There have been many actors who were cast in an iconic role before being dropped for someone better to come along. Many comic book characters are also defined by the actor who plays them, with some becoming hard favorites and others an absolute fail. However, it’s interesting to see some of the casting decisions, and what caused these guys to pull out or be re-cast, perhaps some of our favorite franchises would look and feel very different to what we’re used to.
Nicolas Cage as The Scarecrow
It seems that Nicolas Cage was set to debut the role of Scarecrow in Joel Schumacher’s third Batman movie. However, for those of you who don’t know, Schumacher was responsible for Batman Forever and then the movie Batman and Robin. He was already thinking about who was going to be cast in the third movie ‘Batman Triumphant,’ however, since Batman and Robin went down in history as one of the worst adaptations, Nicholas Cage never got his moment within the franchise.
John Malkovich as The Vulture
It seems that Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man movies were not going to stay a trilogy, and was actually supposed to get a fourth movie. John Malkovich confirmed he was due to play the part of the vulture, which ended up getting played more recently by Michael Keaton in Spider-Man: Homecoming. The reason it never happened is because Sony and Sam Raimi had creative differences and decided they it couldn’t go ahead.
Dougray Scott as Wolverine
Wolverine is another iconic role that no one else could do half as well as the incredible Hugh Jackman, at least that’s what we’ll tell ourselves. Jackman was actually the studio’s second choice of actor to play the role as Dougray Scott had actually got on board the X-Men train. However, since he was working on Mission Impossible at the time, his schedule didn’t work out. That, folks, is how we ended up with this masterful depiction through nine movies.
Tom Cruise as Iron Man
With how popular Robert Downey Jr’s Iron Man is these days, it seems crazy that anyone else in the world would even be considered. However, Tom Cruise, while it was never made official, was involved in the Iron Man idea for a long time before any decisions were made. Marvel admitted that Tom Cruise was supposed to both produce and star in the Iron Man movies and had been set to do so for several years but pulled out believing it wouldn’t take off. The Marvel Cinematic Universe essentially began with Iron Man, not forgetting the 2008 Hulk movie, and has become one of the world’s biggest franchises.
Arnold Schwarzenegger as Doctor Octopus
This was part of a whole separate Spider-Man franchise that was in pre-production before Sam Raimi got on board much later. However, James Cameron wanted to take the reigns with this one, wanting to create a Spider-Man movie where the debut villain would be Doctor Octopus, played by Arnold Schwarzenegger. Sadly, Cameron and the studio couldn’t agree where the film was going, so the whole project fell on its head before Raimi picked it up.
It’s interesting to see how many actors came close to claiming an iconic role but never got to play the part, making way for a different actor to make their mark on the world.