Us is coming out this week, which is a good time to take a look at another movie about murderers who wear masks. Only in this case… it’s a mask that opens your pores and moisturizes.
Mary Harron did not have it easy making American Psycho. She probably prefers it that way; Harron doesn’t shy from a challenge. The movie was already in development for 8 years. Worse, Lionsgate really wanted Leonardo DiCaprio in the lead. But Harron insisted Christian Bale (Who, pre-Batman, kinda had zero star power). Lionsgate, then, came to a conclusion: replace Mary Harron.
According to Mental Floss:
With Harron not budging on casting Bale and only Bale in the lead, the studio had to consider recasting Harron instead. DiCaprio reportedly submitted some of his own names to the short list of replacement directors, including (serendipitously) Martin Scorsese and Danny Boyle. Ultimately, the studio hired Oliver Stone, whom Harron described as “probably the single worst single person to do it. I like Stone’s stuff, but social satire is not his forte.” Added Pressman: “Oliver’s approach was more psychological. Mary’s was satirical.” Ultimately, after not being able to figure out the best direction to take the project, DiCaprio departed the film to work with Boyle on The Beach.
I don’t know what the Oliver Stone version would look like. I mean…. probably Natural Born Killers (Which celebrates its 25th anniversary this year), but who knows.
You might expect the earlier David Cronenberg version, with Brad Pitt attached to it, to go full gore and depict some of the book’s most brutal moments. That movie, though, was going to end in a musical number at the top of the Twin Towers… and wow, I did not see that one coming.
It’s easy, though, to imagine what American Psycho would look like with DiCaprio in the lead role and Scorcese directing… because the two would put together a very similar project with Wolf of Wall Street. If Scorcese had directed, would there have been a freeze frame while DiCaprio explained the entire moral of the movie? I’d say a 90% chance.
This leads us to today’s prompt: What is the most fascinating alternate version of a movie that never was?
As always, discuss movies you have seen and talk about them below! Maybe a director who came into their own commercially and artistically?
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WTF ASIA 47: Rainbow Eyes (2007)
Netflix Garage Special: Fatal Deviation Recap/Review
Movie Reviews: Apollo 11 (2019)