Billy Wilder

  1. Jared Jussim, Jerry Maguire, 1996.  A great fan of Wilder, The Apartmentand Shirley MacLaine in it,  Crowe wanted the iconic  director as the  conscience of the movie –  Jerry’s mentor, Dicky Fox.  A meet was arranged. Wilder instantly  said: “I am sorry, but I have to piss ice water on you right now and say I am not an actor. Goodbye!” Not even a visit to his office by Tom Cruise could persuade him. “I don’t think Tom Cruise has heard the word nothis often in a really long time,”  said Crowe“He lights up when he sees that it’s Tom Cruise,”Crowe told Deadline Hollywood’s Michael Fleming Jr in January 2017. “He invites us in. Tells Tom these stories about Cary Grant, and Sunset Boulevard. He’s just magnificent!And I realise he’s in full Hollywood director-getting-ready-to-make-another-picture-as-soon-as-possible mode, and he’s got Tom Cruise in his office. He’s now going to steal Tom Cruise from me and destroy Jerry Maguirein one move.”  Instead, he noticed one flaw. “Why would we feel sympathy for such a character as this sports agent… I’m stillworried that Jack Lemmon is not sympathetic enough in The Apartment.You know, I wanted to give him a limp. You have to make sure these characters are relate-able… You must hire an actor. The irony is we ended up casting Jared Jussim, who the head of business affairs at Tri-Star.” At a screening, Crowe told  Shirley MacLaine that the girl is a tribute to you in The Apartment. She said, ‘I thought so.’ And then I watched her trot off, to find Renée Zellweger. And in that moment, the circle was complete for me. We’d been blown off by Billy Wilder, but embraced by Shirley MacLaine.”
  2. Steven Spielberg,  Vanilla Sky, 2001.     Cameron Crowe and Tom Cruise  tried and failed again to net Wilder.  Tiny Tom’s pal Spielberg agreed to walk-on, instead


 Birth year: 1906 Death year: 2002 Other name:  Usual occupation: Film director Casting Calls:  2