Zac Efron

  1. Jeremy Sumpter, Peter Pan, 2002.    Efron may have been less of a problem.  During the shoot,  13-year-old Sumpter suddenly grew eight inches.  Sets had to be rebuilt  to accommodate  the boy who did grow up! 
  2. Emile Hirsch, Speed Racer, 2007. UK director Julien Temple was due to direct with Johnny Depp in 1995. The Wachowski siblings voted Efron, before signing Hirsch, a long time fan of the 1967-1968 Japanese anime series. Also close to occupying Speed’s driving seat: Shia Labeouf, Joseph Gordon-Levitt.
  3. Chace Crawford, Footloose, 2009. OK, maybe his High School Musical 3 director Kenny Ortega was in charge but Zac quite the re-hash  to shift gears from musicals by heading The Death and Life of Charlie St Cloud. “My perception of what’s great in a film in constantly evolving.  But I’m not going to do anything for the sake of changing my image.”  Huh?
  4. Alex Pettyfer, Beastly, 2009.    Everyone prersumed that High School Musical sweethearts, Zac andVaness Hudgens would continue their (real) romance in in the updatedBeauty AndThe Beast. Then, enterthe handsome teenage UK actor and Burberry model.
  5. Jackson Rathbone, The Last Airbender, 2009. Efron had time to auditionfor Sokka but no time to make director M Night Shyamalan’s ninth (and worst) fantasy.
  6. Andrew Garfield, The Amazing Spider-Man, , 2010.
  7. Ryan Reynolds, Safe House, 2011.    All the new guys – Efron, Andrew Garfield, Jake Gylllenhaal, Tom Hardy, Garrett Hedlund, Chris Hemsworth, Taylor Kitsch, Shia LaBeouf, James McAvoy, Chris Pine, Channing Tatum, Sam Worthington – angled  to be the freshman CIA babysitter rescuing Denzel Washington in the Hollywood debut of Swedish director Daniel Espinosa.
  8. Henry Cavill, Man of Steel, 2011.
  9. Shia LaBeouf, Charlie Countryman, 2012.  As often happens, one actor slipped out of the lead role, was replaced by another, and then slipped back in again.  More a  matter of scheduling than money… or ego.  The actual movie was more about cliches.
  10. Nicholas Hoult, Autobahn, 2013.   Change of Casey, the  US backpacker involved with drug smugglers on  Munich’s high-speed motorways.  (His girl, Juliette, was also switched from Amber Heard to gorgeous Felicity Jones). 
  11. Timothy Olyphant,  This Is Where I Leave You, 2013.  Like directors, the stars kept changing. Only Jason Bateman and Kathryn Hahn survived the shuffling… to  discover if  there’s anything worse than your father dying, it’s going home for the funeral  – a whole week with  an over-sharing mother, siblings, spouses, exes and other assorted wannabes. 
  12. TJ Miller, Big Hero 6, 2014.   “We didn’t set out to be superheroes. But sometimes life doesn’t go the way you planned.”  Zac Efron, Dwayne Johnson, Chris Pratt and Ryan Reynolds were short-listed for Fred – comic-book fan and now comic-book hero in Disney’s first Marvel subject – winning   the best animation Oscar. It unfurls in 2023 (we all know that computer battery number, right?) in San Fransokyo (‘Frisco rebuilt by the Japanese after an earthquake) and deals with a super-troupe behind the titular collective name… that nobody ever uses. TJ next joined Reynolds in Deadpool. “He’s a real student of comedy,” said co-director Chris Williams, ”so Fred ended up becoming a richer character than anyone expected.” Stan Lee, himself, was Fred’s Pop.
  13. Keith Stanfield, Death Note, 2016.    As far back as 2009, Efron was lost in translation (like much of the plot and characters) as the word’s top ’tec, known simply as L in the first Hollywood take on the acclaimed manga by Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata. The tale of the high school kid out to kill all the world’s villains just by writing their names in a very special notebook had been filmed five times in Japan.
  14. James McAvoy, It Chapter Two, 2018.  At one time The Penguin, The Rock, Peter Quill, Harry Potter, Deadpool, The Green Hornet and Doctor Who were suggested for the adult Bill Denbrough – ie, Danny De Vito, Dwayne Johnson, Chris Pratt, Daniel Radcliffe, Ryan Reynolds, Seth Rogan, David Tennant. Also in the mix: Zac Efron, Will Ferrell, Sean Hayes, Ashton Kutcher, Seth Rogan and such off-the-wall outsiders as UK comics Russell Brand, James Corden, Eddie Izzard and Matt Lucas!  McAvoy was the real McCoy – and one of the biggest Stephen King fans around. Bill Skarsgård had more fun as Pennywise this time.  No literal nightmares about fighting the clown, no kid actors scared by him in scenes, his five-hour make-up cut by half and less dialogue…  in the 262nd of King’s staggering 313 screen credits. (King Kameo: Pawnbroker).




 Birth year: Death year: Other name: Casting Calls:  14