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5 Celebrities Who Said No To Roles In Marvel Films

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Over the past two decades, Marvel superheroes have exploded onto the big screen and captured the hearts of audiences. But many of these movies could have turned out much differently. Some big-name actors declined to star in them, for better or worse. Here are five celebrities who turned down Marvel roles.

Emily Blunt As Black Widow

James Keivom

Emily Blunt turned down not one but two big Marvel roles due to scheduling conflicts. The first was as the Black Widow, who debuted in Iron Man II. After that, Blunt was offered the role of Peggy Carter in Captain America: The First Avenger. The Marvel Cinematic Universe could’ve been considerably different with another actress, like Blunt, playing the key Avengers role of Black Widow.

Bryan Cranston As Sebastian Shaw

Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic

Bryan Cranston was offered the role of the evil mutant Sebastian Shaw for 2011’s X-Men: First Class but chose to do Drive instead. It’s a shame. If Cranston’s role as Walter White on Breaking Bad taught us anything, it’s that he was born to play evil masterminds.

Joaquin Phoenix As Doctor Strange

Retrato del actor. STEPHAN VANFLETEREN

Marvel approached Joaquin Phoenix as their first choice to play Doctor Strange. Phoenix opted not to do it, reasoning that he wasn’t comfortable acting against a green screen. After that, Marvel went straight to Benedict Cumberbatch, and the rest is history. Still, we can’t help but wonder what Phoenix would’ve done with the character.

Rachel McAdams As Pepper Potts

AP Photo/Shizuo Kambayashi

Years before Rachel McAdams would officially enter the MCU in Doctor Strange, she was up for Tony Stark’s love interest, Pepper Potts, in Iron Man. As with others on this list, McAdams couldn’t do it due to scheduling conflicts. Of course, Pepper wasn’t the only Iron Man character to almost have a different actor in the role.

Tom Cruise As Iron Man

ANGELA WEISS/AFP

For almost decade before the movie came out, Tom Cruise was attached to Iron Man as the flick’s titular character. By the time Marvel finally got down to making it, Cruise was too caught up in existing contracts to do the project. But, obviously, nobody’s complaining about his replacement.

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