Over the years, we’ve learned about a long list of actors who turned down roles in Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings series or had a connection to them, and now another name can be added to the list.
Mission Impossible actor Dougray Scott told NME that he was approached to play Aragorn in The Lord of the Rings, a role that eventually went to Viggo Mortensen.
Dougray said he declined to initiate a conversation about appearing in the movie because, after coming off Mission: Impossible 2, he was not thrilled with the idea of picking up his life and moving to New Zealand to shoot the epic fantasy movie trilogy. Jackson famously shot the three movies back-to-back-to-back over the course of multiple years. Dougray also specified that he was never officially offered the role, but he was sent the script to read and extended an invitation to meet with Jackson.
“They sent [the script] to me,” he said. “They wanted me to go meet Peter Jackson in New Zealand, but to be honest with you I’d just finished doing MI:2 and the idea of spending two years away in New Zealand I just couldn’t quite contemplate. The idea of spending that amount of time away in New Zealand at that particular time, I didn’t want to do.”
Dougray said he enjoyed The Lord of the Rings films, and he praised Mortensen specifically. He’s also not losing sleep at night over the matter. “I don’t have regrets about anything,” he said.
Jackson initially hired Stuart Townsend to play Aragorn in his Lord of the Rings trilogy. Townsend trained for the role and filmed some scenes before Jackson decided to make a change and bring in Mortensen.
Jackson was also said to be looking at Daniel Day-Lewis and Russell Crowe for Aragorn, while Nicolas Cage was offered the role but turned it down.
Amazon is now producing a new Lord of the Rings TV show, but production on the series stopped due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
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