Tag Archives: Tom Cruise

The most unexpected casting decisions in film history

For anyone who grew up in the 90s Jennifer Aniston is the dictionary definition of squeaky clean. As Rachel in Friends, the gentlest of gentle comedies, and in a subsequent slew of rom-coms she was never less than likeable but ‘controversial’ was not an adjective often attached to her.

So last week, while subbing a review of her latest film Horrible Bosses 2 (in which the 45-year-old plays a foul-mouthed nymphomaniac) for the newspaper I work for, we started chatting about the least likely pieces of casting we could remember.These were the roles that we came up with off the top of our heads. Feel free to leave any more suggestions in the comments section.

Monster (2003)

The glamorous South African actress underwent an extreme makeover in reverse to play prostitute and serial-killer Aileen Wuornos, gaining 30lbs and fitting fake teeth. It paid off, netting her a Best Actress Oscar.

Kindergarten Cop (1990)

In which Hollywood’s go-to beefcake tried out his comedic chops with toe-curling results. Only slightly less unlikely than his later role as California’s Governor.

Stardust (2007)

HE’s made some odd choices since his 70s heyday, but watching the man who played Taxi Driver’s Travis Bickle and Raging Bull’s Jake La’ Motta prancing in a pink feather boa as a cross-dressing pirate tops the lot.

S.O.B (1981)

If you want to ruin a slice of your childhood, watch S.O.B, in which Andrews (aka Maria VonTrapp/ Mary Poppins) is convinced to star in a softcore porn musical and bare her breasts.

Collateral (2004)

Cruise’s CV was a long list of All-American heroes  and flawed good guys (Top Gun, Rain Man, Mission: Impossible), so this impressive turn as a callous hit-man was a surprising departure.

Pulp Fiction (1994)

The late 80s saw the Grease star reduced to sharing top billing with a wisecracking newborn in Look Who’s Talking.
The role of Elvis-loving heavy Vincent Vega made him cool again… briefly.

Dallas Buyers Club (2013)

Once a six-pack flashing rom-com rent-a-hunk, McConaughey has made a career 180⁰.  His recent transformation is starkest here, as a rail-thin AIDS victim selling illegal drugs.