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Hugh Jackman Nearly Replaced Tom Hanks in Critically Panned $1.5B Franchise That Could’ve Potentially Continued Failing Series 

hugh jackman and tom hanks

Based on Dan Brown’s critically acclaimed best-selling novel, 2006’s The Da Vinci Code comprised one of the greatest living actors of our time, Tom Hanks, at its forefront. But it seems that even before Hanks was selected for portraying the role of Robert Langdon, X-Men Star Hugh Jackman was initially considered for the lead in the movie.

The first movie and its sequels did good numbers and grossed around $1.5 billion at the box office throughout three movies. But they weren’t much well received by the critics and the Toy Story actor himself didn’t back away from sharing his distaste either.

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Hugh Jackman
Hugh Jackman

Hugh Jackman was the initial choice to lead The Da Vinci Code 

Following Hugh Jackman’s illustrious career in Hollywood, the actor has maintained a balance between starring in big-budget blockbusters and more story-focused indie projects. Although, his X-Men movies did push the actor to stardom and made him one of the biggest names in the world of superheroes, however, the actor wasn’t enthralled by every big project he was offered.

Jackman, who reportedly rejected the opportunity to star in a James Bond film, also allegedly backed away from starring in the adaptation of Dan Brown’s best-selling novel. Even though the reasons behind the actor’s alleged rejection of the role aren’t clear, it might have to do with his extremely busy schedule and desire to star in more story-focused projects.

Although he may have missed the opportunity to take a healthy paycheck home, it might have turned out as a blessing in disguise for the actor, as all three movies, including The Da Vinci Code, Angels & Demons, and Inferno were bashed by the critics. And even its lead, Tom Hanks too didn’t back away from criticizing one of his biggest blockbusters.

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The Da Vinci Code (2006)
The Da Vinci Code (2006)

Tom Hank once deemed his Robert Langdon movies as Hooey

Considering that Tom Hank hasn’t been the biggest fan of big-budget blockbusters, his inclusion in the adaption of Dan Brown’s best-selling novel was a little surprising for fans at the time. But despite the movie’s successful run at the box office, unlike Hank’s most projects, it wasn’t held high among critics.

Tom Hank would later express his viewpoint regarding the movie’s low critical reception and claimed that they were made for commercial reasons only, as he went on to criticize the movie’s story. He said,

“God, that was a commercial enterprise. Yeah, those Robert Langdon sequels are hooey. The Da Vinci Code was hooey.”

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Tom Hanks as Robert Langdon
Tom Hanks as Robert Langdon

But despite its problems, the Forrest Gump star expressed that he didn’t regret working in the movie, as it became one of the actor’s highest-grossing movies after Toy Story 3 and its sequel. However, unlike the first movie, the two sequels didn’t do quite as well as the first, and the possibilities of future entries in the franchise eventually washed away.

The Da Vinci Code is available to stream on Netflix.

Source: Movieweb

Written by Santanu Roy

Santanu Roy is a film enthusiast with a deep love for the medium of animation while also being obsessed with Batman and The Everly Brothers. Apart from pursuing animation and analyzing movies, he possesses a deep fondness for narrative-driven games and is currently a content writer at Fandomwire with over 500 articles.