Hollywood has been blessed with a few truly versatile actors. Brad Pitt happens to be one such Thespian.
The Fight Club star has shown his mettle over the years, having acted in all sorts of movies ranging from mind bogglers to all-out action flicks. However, there were certain off-screen controversies that could have hindered his growth. The Se7en star’s career was at a crossroads in the 90s because of his drug addiction. And it could have cost him dearly – stealing from him an opportunity to feature in one of the most iconic films of the 90s.
Things could have gone awry for Brad Pitt
There can be no doubt about Brad Pitt’s acting prowess. Even at the onset of his career, everyone knew that he was destined for greatness. It came as a shock to many to see how God had gifted him with both hands.
The man from Oklahoma had just one thing going against him – a drug addiction that was having a sizable impact on his professional career. And this addiction could have claimed his spot in the iconic 1995 sci-fi thriller 12 Monkeys.
Terry Gilliam couldn’t wrap his head around the casting of Brad Pitt
In a candid interview about the making of 12 Monkeys, director Terry Gilliam along with casting director, Margery Simkin opened up about how they had their fair share of doubts about Pitt for the role of Jeffrey Goines.
The reasons were multifarious. For starters, they had never seen him play such a character before. Gilliam said,
“I was actually scared shitless that Brad might not be able to do the character because up to then we’d never seen him as a motormouth.” (Inverse)
That was far from their primary concern though.
Terry Gilliam was (almost) not going to cast Brad Pitt for his controversial views
What scared the man in charge of 12 Monkeys was his drug addiction. Pitt at the time seemed to be staring down a pit that had no end. But he realized that his behavior was not going to cut it. Terry Gilliam said,
“I put [Brad] together with Stephen Bridgewater, who had worked with Jeff Bridges on The Fisher King. Stephen’s first meetings with Brad — he liked pot too much, he had a lazy tongue.” (Inverse)
That could have very easily cost him that role. But that is where his class and hard work stepped in. The Babylon star “worked his ass off” to prove himself. What really made The Fisher King director admire him was his commitment to the role. He limited his use. And to get the feel of the role, he even checked himself into a mental ward.
One wonders how everything would have gone had he not managed to overcome that.