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Lord of the Rings: Adrien Brody Regrets Turning Down Role

For you trivia fans, here's a question: What do actors Adrien Brody and Sean Connery have in common? They both turned down roles to be in Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings and regretted it because neither understood the project. Talking to GQ on his career retrospective, the actor opened up about the revelation after seeing 2001's The Fellowship of the Ring on the screen.

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Elijah Wood in The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003). Image courtesy of New Line Cinema

Adrien Brody's Lord of the Rings Regret

"I, somehow, didn't grasp it," Brody said about being approached about the film. "I don't know what part I would have been right for, but it was some Hobbit-like character. I was looking for something else. I remember going to see 'Lord of the Rings' in the theater with an ex-girlfriend. And she turned to me and said, 'You passed on Lord of the Rings?!' I remember feeling so stupid. But I don't think I would have gotten the role of Jack in Peter's 'King Kong.' I don't think that would have translated." The actor remained grateful for starring in the 2005 remake.

Lord of the Rings: Adrien Brody Regrets Turning Down Role
New York, NY – June 19, 2021: Adrien Brody attends 'Clean' Premiere during the 2021 Tribeca Festival at Brooklyn Commons at MetroTech. Editorial credit: lev radin /

"We had a premiere in Times Square, and they shut down all of Times Square," Brody said. "The mayor was there and introduced us to the city. It was a big deal. My face was immortalized on a McDonald's soda cup. When does that happen for anyone?" King Kong, which also starred Naomi Watts and Jack Black, was a box office success grossing $556.9 million globally for Universal. Connery was originally eyed for Gandalf and turning it down before it went to Ian McKellan. Regretting his decision, Connery decided not to pass on 2003's League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, but the experience left him to decide to retire from the screen. You can watch Brody's GQ career retrospective below.

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Tom ChangAbout Tom Chang

I'm a follower of pop culture from gaming, comics, sci-fi, fantasy, film, and TV for over 30 years. I grew up reading magazines like Starlog, Mad, and Fangoria. As a writer for over 10 years, Star Wars was the first sci-fi franchise I fell in love with. I'm a nerd-of-all-trades.
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