For those who read Lee Childs' series of novels, one of the biggest complaints people had over Tom Cruise's casting was the fact that he bore very little resemblance to the character on the page.
For one, Jack Reacher was supposedly a man-monster well over six foot and wide as a door. Tom Cruise's iteration of Reacher, however, was not that. Not surprisingly, another actor was in line for the role before Cruise who fit the description - namely, Dwayne Johnson.
In a Facebook Q&A last night, Johnson opened up about losing out on the role, saying that it inspired him to take up his role as Hobbs in 'Fast Five', knowing that he could do just as well without it. More to the point, Johnson admitted that he's actually grateful he didn't get the role in the first place.
"In Hollywood, actors are kind of like in-a-box. There are actors that can vie for a particular role because it allows for them to have a certain look, skin color, size, etc. Fortunately, for me, there aren’t a lot of guys at all who look like me. So, all of my roles, from the beginning of my career, I’ve been a lucky son of a bitch that they’ve been created and designed for me — except Jack Reacher."
That said, Johnson admitted that he had - at the time, anyway - little chance of clinching the role from The Cruiser. "Tom was the biggest movie star in the world, and I was not. I got the call saying ‘Hey, you didn’t get the role’ Look, I didn’t even know if I had a shot for it, but the people around me at that time made me think that I did."
Seeing as how 'Jack Reacher' eventually ended up, it probably was for the best. As Johnson put it himself, "I’m positive that the role of Jack Reacher, because it was an established character, an IP that was well known and beloved around the world, that I wouldn’t have had the creative space to do what I wanted with the character. I look back in gratitude that I didn’t get Jack Reacher."