Danny DeVito's career has gone through a resurgence since It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia, but he's always been a hugely popular actor.
Going all the way back to Taxi in the early '70s, DeVito's a well-known and respected comedic actor who's sought for a lot of different roles. One role he turned down, however, was one that was incredibly egregious. When you say it out loud, he would have been perfect for the role.
We mean PERFECT.
According to a recent interview with Rocky Morton, the director of the ill-fated 1993 adaptation of Super Mario Bros., Danny DeVito was the No. 1 choice to play everyone's favourite Italian plumber. "Well, Danny DeVito turned us down. Mario was the main character in the cast, and Bob was available. It was basically about availability. There are all these stories about the way people are cast but it’s normally about availability."
"Then we saw lots of different Luigis and John stood out because of his comic timing, his ability to be real but also be funny at the same time. Bob had that ability too. We wanted it to have a reality to it, especially the relationship, and we wanted it to be funny but not just a series of gags."
As it stands, the film is something of a disaster, with Bob Hoskins openly admitting that both he and John Leguizamo were drunk as lords almost every day on set. For Rocky Morton, who was a respected music video director, it was just as tough. "It was a harrowing experience. I mean, we had five units working every day... We had this enormous set that was built with not enough money to light it… I’d ask for a crane to put the camera on, you know, because we’re making a movie, and there wasn’t any money for a crane for a movie that size!"
The full interview is up over at SciFiNow and, honestly, check it out because it's a fascinating read.