Top Ten Casting Choices That We Are All Grateful Were Changed Before The Movie Was Made: Movie Rob

I am thrilled to present movie watching machine Rob of Movie Rob on my blog today, who had a lovely idea for his list, and there are many on here that I think you will all be able to agree with! If you do not already follow Rob’s blog, I would highly recommend it. Rob also runs an awesome feature called Genre Grandeur every month, in which you submit your favourite film in the given genre that has been selected, join it, it is a lot of fun!

Should you be interested in submitting a Top Ten list, draw up a list of either your top ten personal favourite movies or a top ten list by a specific genre/theme and send it along to me at Hope to see a few more lists!


When choosing a cast for a movie, many directors and producers have certain actors in mind for particular roles and sometimes they are correct on their first thoughts and sometimes, they aren’t.

Here is a list of 10 casting decisions that we are quite grateful for. If the original choice hadn’t turned down these iconic roles (or in one particular case, been fired after they filmed for 5 weeks (#8), our view of EVERY one of these iconic roles and the movies they appear in would be seen much differently by the entire world.

10. Mick Jagger – Irwin Fletcher in Fletch (1985)

mick jagger

9. Gwyneth Paltrow – Rose DeWitt Bukater in Titanic (1997)

gwenyth paltrow

8. Eric Stoltz – Marty McFly in Back to the Future (1985)

back to the future

7. Daryl Hannah – Vivian Ward in Pretty Woman (1990)

darryl hannah

6. John Travolta – Forrest Gump in Forrest Gump (1994)

john travolta

5. Michelle Pfieffer – Clarice Starling in Silence of the Lambs (1991)

michelle pfeiffer

4. Sylvester Stallone – Axel Foley in Beverly Hills Cop (1984)

sylvester stallone

3. Tom Selleck – Indiana Jones in Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)

indiana jones

2. Richard Gere – John McClane in Die Hard (1988)

richard gere

1. Gene Hackman – Hannibal Lecter in Silence of the Lambs (1991)

hannibal lecter

81 thoughts on “Top Ten Casting Choices That We Are All Grateful Were Changed Before The Movie Was Made: Movie Rob

  1. Thank you so much for submitting this list Rob! One casting choice I am thrilled did not realise itself was Stuart Townsend almost being Aragorn instead of Viggo Mortensen!


    1. Thanks Zoe for all the praise. This was lots of fun to do. Yeah, I knew about that one too, but I cant even think of what Townsend looks like, so I think the rest here are more high profile people


      1. Anytime Rob, really appreciate your participation! Did you ever watch Queen of the Damned? Meh. Imagine that awful Lestat walking around as an awful Aragorn! 😛 I would have died!


  2. Wow. This is one of the best uses of a Top Ten format ever. Very well done Rob, what a great list. I would honest to god be intrigued by a Gene Hackman version of Hannibal Lecter. But all the others — particularly John Travolta for Forrest Gump — !!!! Haha. Can you imagine?


    1. Thanks Tom,

      As we’ve seen, NOBODY can do Lecter as well as Hopkins. He set the bar waaay too high for anyone else (even Madds)

      Yeah, I think Travolta as Gump woulda been horrendous 😦


    1. Thanks SDQ,

      Just think that Willis did so well with the role because he can mix action and humor quite well. Gere wouldn’t have been able to pull that off. Imagine him saying Yippe Kayee 🙂


  3. This is great. I thought I would come here and be able to defend one of those replaced by saying that the film would not have been so bad without a change. But nope. God, Travolta in Forrest Gump would have been so hideous.


      1. OF COURSE!! Could you imagine him as Fletch??

        That would be like casting me as Spock.


      2. DO YOU THINK I COULD BE SPOCK?????????????



  4. The worst on this list would be Travolta as Forest Gump; can just image Forest talking like Vincent. “Man, I used to run fast as shit when I was a kid.” lol.

    Some of these casts actually wouldn’t be so bad; I could see Hackman playing Hanibal or Michelle Pfeiffer playing Clarice. Eric Stoltz would have been fine as Marty. MJ Fox was great in the role, but I’m sure Stoltz would have been about as good. I can’t imagine anyone playing Fletch other than Chevy. 🙂

    And let’s not forget Will Smith turning down “Neo” in The Matrix. Will Smith said was his biggest regret of his career. lol.


    1. very funny Gary abt Travolta as Vincent Gump.

      They actually filmed for a few weeks with Stoltz as McFly and he was too serious so Zemekis and Spielberg made the change.

      You can do a search on line for pics from scenes he shot and they dont look as fun as the ones with Fox.

      Yep, Smith as Neo was also one I contemplated adding, but he actually might have been good there and these were for ones that wouldn’t have been 🙂


      1. Oh okay, I see what you’re saying. But I do think Hackman could have rocked the Hanibal role. 🙂

        Looks like the producers and director made a good call switching Eric Stoltz out then; he’s a good actor though, but sometimes one is just better in certain roles. I always thought Stoltz was good in “Some Kind of Wonderful”.


      2. PS:

        Another clip from Vincent Gump:

        PRESIDENT: How’s it feel to be an All-American?
        GUMP: Man, I gotta piss like a motherfucker.


      3. gotta disagree with you on that one Gary, Dont think Hackman would’ve come close to what Hopkins did.

        Loved Stoltz in Some Kind of Wonderful and also in Mask. he was also great in Memphis Belle.

        Someone should make Vincent Gump, it’ll be hilarious 🙂


    1. Thanks Craig – They actually filmed for a few weeks with Stoltz as McFly and he was too serious so Zemekis and Spielberg made the change.

      You can do a search on line for pics from scenes he shot and they dont look as fun as the ones with Fox.


  5. I have seen the footage from when Eric Stoltz was doing BTTF. And boy did they make the right decision to change him out for someone with talent. If they had not gone with Michael J. Fox it would never have been a huge franchise.


      1. I mean, they’re really two very different kinds of performances. It’s hard to compare Hopkins and Mads. Have you seen Hannibal though? Don’t knock it until you’ve seen it!


      1. Ha! I see what you did there. It is somewhat graphic, but also really, really well-done. You could at least try an episode…just sayin’. 😉


    1. for you (and b/c u asked nicely,) I’ll watch the pilot episode. But if I have nightmares, I know who to blame

      BTW, how’s your Genre Grandeur review coming along?


      1. Budy watching my latest milestone marathon so I probably wont get to it before friday at the earliest. Ideally by the 20th but the sooner the better. Zoe is my bedt customer. Everyone else just dont realize how much fun it is 😦


    1. Oops. I hate the WordPress app. Great list, Rob! Every one of these other than Michelle Pfeiffer would have sucked!!! Especially Gwyneth Paltrow – yuck. But that’s just in general. ; )


      1. u think Pfieffer woulda been a better Clarice?? I think Foster was able to play the young innocent recruit in a way that she never woulda been able to do.

        Thanks Mutant!


    1. I actually didnt know that. I knew they wanted Matthew McConaughey for the part tho.

      still cant see her as Clarice no matter how hard I try.

      Thanks for commenting Nuwansenfilmsen!


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