Quentin Tarantino Says Tom Cruise Nearly Played Brad Pitt's Role in 'Once Upon a Time in Hollywood'
While Brad Pitt and Leonardo DiCaprio are one of the hottest on-screen duos of the year in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, director Quentin Tarantino recently revealed that another major A-lister was approached to star.
Sitting down with Josh Horowitz on his Happy Sad Confused podcast, the filmmaker admitted that, at one point, he reached out to Tom Cruise to play the role of stuntman Cliff Booth, which eventually went to Pitt.
"We talked about it," Tarantino shared. "He's a great guy, and we really hit it off."
The Pulp Fiction director said that, while he went in a different direction for this project, working with Cruise is still a possibility, adding, "It could happen on something else."
Ultimately, Tarantino admitted that he lucked out in a big way when he managed to get DiCaprio and Pitt -- two actors he's worked with in the past, but on separate projects -- to star in this film together.
"The reality of it was, people ask, 'Was it always these two guys?' And I'm like, 'Well, it's the casting coup of the decade,'" Tarantino reflected. "You can't count on that. They both have to respond to it, they both have to want to play they roles, they have to be available. There's a whole lot of stuff there."
In the film, DiCaprio plays a fading movie star named Rick Dalton, while Pitt plays his close friend and stunt double. For the casting to work, Tarantino explained, he needed two stars who made sense, physically, playing an actor and his double.
"The reality is, I had maybe eight different pairings of actors that could go together in a realistic way in this situation," Tarantino shared. "Now, the ones that I got were definitely my No. 1s."
ET's Keltie Knight spoke with the famed filmmaker at the star-studded Los Angeles premiere of Once Upon a Time In Hollywood on Monday, and he opened up about working with the pair of Oscar winners.
"It's like lassoing a couple of wild stallions!" Tarantino marveled. "They are such terrific actors and such great movie stars!"
Check out the video below to hear more. Once Upon a Time In Hollywood hits theaters July 26.
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