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Original casting ideas

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Anyone who was once or has been considered for one of the various film installments of The Expndables franchise.

Actors/directors considered at one point or another include:Edit

  • Ben Kingsley- in the early stages, he was considered for the role of one of the villains in the first film. He later declined to star.[1]
  • Forest Whitaker- another award-winning actor considered for a part in the first movie as Hale Caesar and who later declined for unspecified reasons.[2]
  • Vinnie Jones- Stallone announced that he was being considered for the third film but nothing ever came of it after the casting auditions.[4]
  • Mickey Rourke- was considered to reprise his role in the second film but Rourke couldn't commit until the third film due to seeking other film roles at the time.
  • Christian Slater- another face that was long connected to the second and third film after Stallone remarked about how fun he was to work with during filming of 2012's Bullet to the Head.
  • Antonio Banderas- was yearning to work on the second film but couldn't commit; later appeared in the third film.
  • Charlie Sheen- considered for a role as a CIA agent role in the second film but after a recent scandal and trying to get his life back together after being fired from his CBS sitcom, he was no longer an option. Bruce Willis's already existing role then took the place of this proposed character in the first sequel.
  • Liam Hemsworth- originally attached to the first film and later confirmed for the first sequel.
  • Wesley Snipes- originally optioned for either of the first two films but was unable to take time out of his prison sentence for tax evasion. Was only allowed to film scenes for the third film once his sentence ended.
  • Nicolas Cage- was rumored for the first sequel and later denied any involvement in the third film.
  • Danny Trejo- was originally attached by Sly as being in the first film despite never being actually contacted about such a possibility. Trejo later claimed that Sly did that as a way to attract a larger hispanic demographic and has not personally expressed interessed interest or reluctance to join a future installment of the franchise.
  • John Travolta- was rumored for a role in the second and third film; his agency later denied such.
  • Taylor Lautner- Media made up rumors of his involvement for being in the third film; never confirmed by official rep's.
  • Steve "Stone Cold" Austin- was rumored by many movie sites and fans as reappearing in the first sequel as a twin brother of Austin's character Paine plotting revenge for the death of his sibling. That idea was denied and thrown out by Sly as being too ludicrious and due to the fact that after suffering many injuries (including a broken neck) for his fight with Austin during the first film that he had no interest in revisiting that whole affair.
  • Michael Biehn- was slated to star in the second film but due to Biehn stating for the longest time that he was never a big fan of playing the supporting role in a group project, it came as no surprise that he passed on it.[5]
  • Michael Paré- was another 80s has-been star mentioned by Stallone around the same time as being [6]
  • Kurt Russell- another star originally asked to be in the first and second film but declined due to reasons similar to Biehn's. Russell also in February of 2014 told the media that he just found similar movies like the Fast and Furious blockbuster franchise to have more appeal while he found Expendables to be more of a "been-there-done-that" aspect. [7]
  • Sandra Bullock- another co-star of Sly's Demolition Man who was rumored to be joining the cast of the original Expendables film.
  • Steven Seagal- was briefly attached as being in the third film but due to the continuing reluctance and having a bad history working with producer Avi Lerner, he continues to be a fan-favorite that will never make the cut.
  • Jackie Chan- wanted to star in the second film but was unavailable; later got underwhelmed by the production's humongous cast and has to reluctantly decline to be in the third film.
  • Donnie Yen- was optioned as a possible addition to the second film but would only film in China locations and was later dropped from the film's final cast roster.
  • Joe Taslim- was attached, auditioned and considered for the third film after Sly was astonished by his international hit film The Raid: Redemption.
  • Iko Uwais- was also consider by Stallone after Sly saw his hit film The Raid: Redemption.
  • Clint Eastwood- once went from joking to being serious about directing the third film.
  • Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson- was briefly rumored to be starring in the first sequel and claimed in interviews that he would love to join but still is waiting for the right moment to star in a future installment since they're not ready for him yet.
  • John Woo- popular and influential Hong Kong action director who many fans cited as one who should direct a future installment.
  • Mel Gibson- was another fan-favorite who others wished would join the franchise. Sly was hesitant despite supporting Gibson during his recent career-damaging scandal but later cast Gibson as the main villain in the third film.
  • Bruce Willis- Willis was suppose to reprise his role of Mr. Church in the third film but due to asking for too much money (or as Sly remarked after the fact as "being greedy"), Willis' contract was not renewed.
  • Pierce Brosnan- While the former James Bond series actor was one of many celebrities to be featured in various fan-made posters for The Expendables series, Brosnon recently stated that he and producer Avi Lerner had worked together in the past and he recently was offered a role. He belives that he'll appear in the 7th installment of the franchise. [8]
  • Jack Nicholson- Stallone briefly mentioned that he had Jack in mind to join the cast of Expendables 3 at one point. [9]
  • Robert De Niro is currently attached to Expendables 4 after both De Niro and Stallone were promoting their 2013 comedy film Grudge Match and Stallone expressed interest in working with De Niro again. [10]
  • Tom Sizemore was attached to the second Expendables film but didn't make the final cut for unspecified reasons.


Gallery of original castEdit

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