Arnold Schwarzenegger has been a force to reckon with for over 5 decades in Hollywood. Starting from his first stint with the movies in 1970 with Hercules, the action star went from strength to strength to take advantage of his commanding physicality. His presence in cult classics like James Cameron’s Terminator series, Commando and Predator made him the undisputed king of action while comedies like Junior and True Lies showcased another side to his personality.
Schwarzenegger also dabbled in politics successfully by becoming the Governor of California between 2003 and 2007. Despite being part of many prestigious film projects over the years, the Austrian bodybuilding star also made some bold choices to reject films by famous directors as well.
Arnold Schwarzenegger Turned Down Stanley Kubrick
It isn’t often that a celebrated maverick director comes knocking on an actor’s door. But Arnold Schwarzenegger was one of the lucky few who caught the eye of iconic filmmaker Stanley Kubrick in the 80s. Considered one of the greatest directors of his time, Kubrick’s films are known to be provocative, disturbing, and powerful in their content and execution. But Schwarzenegger made the bold move to forgo Kubrick’s offer. The master storyteller approached the Terminator star in 1987 to offer him the role of Sergeant “Animal Mother” in his film Full Metal Jacket which was the director’s scathing take on the Vietnam War.
Kubrick was of the opinion that Schwarzenegger would be tailor-made for the role of the brutal and uncompromising machine gunner. But the star turned down Kubrick and the film owing to his commitments to two big blockbusters Commando and Predator. While Full Metal Jacket went on to become a critically acclaimed film, Schwarzenegger’s decision proved right for his career, with both Commando and Predator becoming two of his most successful films at the box office that also earned the star hefty paydays.
Arnold Schwarzenegger Also Missed Out On These Roles
Apart from Stanley Kubrick’s Full Metal Jacket, Arnold Schwarzenegger has also turned down other lucrative films that came his way, for various reasons. One of them was the 2007 Will Smith starrer I Am Legend. According to inside information, the movie which was originally supposed to have been helmed by Ridley Scott, was offered to the True Lies star 15 years before. With Scott dropping out of the project, issues of budget, and director Michael Bay stepping in, Schwarzenegger reportedly lost interest and backed out of the project.
Schwarzenegger was also considered for Robocop which in retrospect would have been a perfect fit for the actor with his massive body frame and cyborg-like movements that he executed perfectly in films like Terminator. But these thoughts were not echoed by the producers who were of the opinion that his physicality would pose a problem while designing a suit for the character. The role ultimately went to actor Peter Weller.
Source: Movie Web