When we think of the Marvel Cinematic Universe we only think of the characters that are in it. We think about the actors that play the characters we love and we don’t think about who might have been cast instead of them. The truth is that a lot of people auditioned for those roles. There are a lot of actors that get turned down or declined the offer before they ended up with the final actor.
Sometimes the actors that audition are big-name stars and sometimes they are relatively unknown. The reasons why these actors might decline the offer is because the filming schedule will interfere with something else they are working on. Or they might not get the role because the producers don’t think that they were a good fit.
If you are interested to know who has come in to audition for some of these iconic characters, you have come to the right place. We have some information about some actors who have come into the audition room to become some of our beloved Avengers. Below is a list of 16 actors who were almost cast as Avengers.
1. Tom Hiddleston as Thor: According to Looper, Tom Hiddleston originally went into the audition for Marvel with the intention of the role of Thor. It’s reported on Looper that he gained 20 pounds of muscle before heading into the audition, that’s how serious he was about getting the role. It turned out that the auditors thought he was better suited as the beloved villain/hero Loki.
2. Eliza Dushku as Black Widow: Back in 2009 Eliza Dushku vocalized her desire to be cast as Black Widow in Iron Man 2 on The Howard Stern Show. “They’re doing ‘Iron Man 2,’ and I’m so perfect for the Black Widow character, that they just need to get into it,” said Dushku. “They need to understand… I just learned Russian because I had to play a Russian girl in ‘Dollhouse.’ Maybe we could all tell them. Let’s get on a Black Widow / Iron Man 2 campaign.” And an online campaign started shortly after.
3. David Duchovny as The Hulk: Back in 2006, Marvel vice-chairman Peter Cuneo said in an interview with AOL’s Motley Fool Radio Team: “Duchovny’s name has been brought up several times. He’s quite the fan too.” It seemed like it was all set in stone, well until Edward Norton lobbied pretty hard and got the role.
4. Timothy Olyphant as Iron Man: Looper claims that Timothy Olyphant’s management team was able to get him onto Jon Favreau’s short list for Tony Stark in Iron Man. We all know that he didn’t manage to get the part but in an interview with Conan back in 2015 he was in good spirits talking about the audition. “I’m still waiting to hear back. Those superhero movies are huge! That could be a real game-changer.”
5. Glenn Howerton as Star-Lord: It’s hard to think of Star-Lord being anyone but Chris Pratt. There is something special that Pratt was able to do with Star-Lord. Yet it turns out that It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia star Glenn Howerton could’ve ended up at Star-Lord if Chris didn’t take the part. James Gunn said in a 2014 interview with GQ, “Glenn came along a bit later, but there was a good chance that, if I didn’t cast Chris, that I would’ve cast Glenn Howerton in the role.”
6. Michael B. Jordan as Falcon: Years before Michael B. Jordan was Killmonger in Black Panther he auditioned for the role of Falcon, according to The Daily Beast. Jordan spoke to the publication shortly after Anthony Mackie got cast, “With superheroes, a lot of those comics were created before the 1960s, so they weren’t going to have a black man save America. So I think it’s more of a continuity thing now. With more generic superheroes, why can’t you have a black, Asian, Hispanic actor play the role? Hopefully, in my lifetime, we’ll see more black superheroes.” It looks like his hope is now a reality, thanks to Black Panther. And hopefully, there will be more in the future.
7. Sebastian Stan as Captain America: When Sebastian Stan went in to audition for a role in Captain America, he was auditioning for the title role that eventually went to Chris Evans, according to People. “I was really bummed that I didn’t get Captain America,” Stan told People.com. It all turned out for the best anyways because, in the end, he ended up as the beloved Bucky.
8. Asa Butterfield as Spiderman: According to Screen Rant, Asa Butterfield got far along in the casting process to become the most recent Spiderman in Spiderman: Homecoming. He got so far that he was able to do a screen-test with Robert Downey Jr. But it was later reported that he was no longer considered for the role.
9. Joaquin Phoenix as Doctor Strange: According to Cinema Blend, Joaquin Phoenix was considered to play Doctor Strange. They even considered him to be in the final negotiation phase back in 2015. It turns out that something mustn’t have gone through in the negotiations and Phoenix didn’t get the part. Phoenix did reflect later on that, “I think everybody was really happy with how things turned out. All parties were satisfied.”
10. Gina Carano as Gamora: Looper.com states that UFC fighter Gina Carano was considered for the role of Gamora. This was when Carano was coming off of the action-packed film Haywire she did back in 2011. Looper states that Carano was considered for the role early in the production process for Guardians Of The Galaxy. This was so early on, that Gamora didn’t have green skin yet. But eventually it worked out perfectly; Gina Carano got to play the tough Angel Dust in Deadpool.
11. Emily Blunt as Agent Peggy Carter: Emily Blunt seems to be a favorite for Marvel producers to seek out when casting. Blunt told The Independent in 2014 that she was asked to play both Black Widow and Agent Peggy Carter, but she turned them down. “Yeah, but it was never the right time, really, and it just didn’t work out scheduling-wise with those two,” she added.
12. Jim Carrey as Loki: According to Suggest.com, Jim Carrey was considered for the role of Loki in the first Thor film in 2011. Suggest.com states that Carrey was the original first choice Marvel had for Loki but then Hiddleston came in and knocked it out of the park. A cool fact about Carrey’s ties to Loki is that they go back to his 1994 film The Mask. The mask that was in that film was made by the Norse God Loki.
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