Payday Loans
Roy Scheider (1932-2008)


  1. Gregory Peck, The Omen, 1975.     Charlton Heston and William Holden and even Dick Van Dyke (!) also refused, giving Peck his first movie in five years - and his biggest pay-day. Consequently, Holden rushed into the sequel.
  2. Robert De Niro, Taxi Driver, 1975
  3. Robert De Niro, The Deer Hunter, 1978.   "Since I was anxious to do that Jaws part and work for Spielberg, I said OK, fine, when Universal said they'd  want me for two more," Scheider told me in Cannes. "I ran away and did Marathon Man and Sorcerer.   Finally my time was up. I owed them two movies.   It was either work for them or not work. At the time, Cimino and I were preparing The Deer Hunter. I was growing the beard you saw on Robert De Niro. Universal said:   'You're either going to do Jaws II or you're not going to work.'   Legally, they had me. I'm just sorry that I didn't get a chance to participate. De Niro was just fabulous.   I'd have liked to have been as good." (Pause). "But I made the second Jaws count for the two I   owed   them." Final irony:   Universal released Deer Hunter.
  4. Robert Stack, 1941, 1979.    Steven Spielberg's first choice   for the 60-year-old General "Vinegar Joe" Stilwell. "That's not a leading man's shot," said Scheider gleefully, "that's an actor's shot."
  5. Dustin   Hoffman, Kramer vs Kramer, 1979.    Once Al Pacino passed, Robert Benton wanted Scheider, producer Stanley wanted Hoffman.   Dustin  got the Oscar
  6. Al Pacino, Cruising, 1980.    Both Robert De Niro and Scheider backed off.
  7. James Caan, Thief, 1980.    Jeff Bridges was was auteur Michael Mann’s first choice  for the titular Frank. Until some dopes said that for a such a career criminal, Jeff was too young (at 31) and inexperienced  (after 25 screen roles for Bogdanovich, Cimino, Frankenheimer, Huston, Rafaelson, etc).  Al Pacino and The French Connection cops, Gene Hackman and  Roy Sheider, were also in the frame.
  8. Robert Duvall, Pursuit of DB Cooper, 1981.    As the ex-Marine insurance man chasing his tail looking for the mythical DB Cooper, who, as Variety reviewed, "did indeed excite the nation by taking over a jet with a fake bomb, demanding $200,000 and then parachuting out the back door, never to be seen again." That much said, Variety then lowered the boom: "That tale could still make an exciting picture."
  9. James Mason, The Verdict, 1982.    For the ace attorney hoping to make mincemeat of washed up lawyer Paul Newman.   No way!
  10. Sean Connery, Der Name der Rose/The Name of the Rose, France-Italy-West Germany, 1986.   Réalisateur Jean-Jacques Annaud was not keen on 007 as Umberto Eco’s medieval monk turned detective.  Columia Pictures even refused financing if Connery was involved as his post-Bond star was imploding. Naturally, Brando topped Annaud’s further 14 ideas. Five Americans: Scheider, Robert De Niro, Frederic Forrest, Paul Newman, Jack Nicholson; four Brits: Michael Caine, Albert Finney, Ian McKellen, Terence Stamp; two Canadians: Christopher Plummer and  Donald Sutherland; plus the  French Yves Montand, Irish Richard Harris and Italian Vittorio Gassman. a Connery’s reading was the best (Scheider, said JJA, was trop American) and his career exploded anew. Two years later, he won his support Oscar for The Untouchables.
  11. Jack Nicholson, The Two Jakes, 1990.
  12. Tommy Lee Jones,  JFK, 1991.


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