- Channing Tatum and Chris Evans almost got cast to play Jake Sully avatarwith the final decision being down to the reading of a single line.
- James Cameron conducted an international search for the role, considering the likes of Matt Damon, Chris Pratt, Chris Pine and Jake Gyllenhaal, but ultimately settled on Sam Worthington.
- The lesser-known Worthington was the best choice for the role as it conveyed seriousness and allowed audiences to see Sully as a character rather than a well-known Hollywood face.
Channing Tatum and Chris Evans almost got cast as protagonist Jake Sully avatar, with the decision ultimately coming down to reading a single line. 14 years have passed since then avatar hit theaters and made history as the highest-grossing film of all time. The blockbuster juggernaut emerged from the unique vision of the successful director James Cameron. Cameron wrote the first treatment for the film in 1995, but chose to wait until digital technology caught up with his ambition for the visually rich world of Pandora.
The film was a huge gamble, with its oversized budget and a widespread concept that had no basis in established intellectual property. The risk factor was only heightened by casting then-unknown Australian actor Sam Worthington in the lead role. The producers would certainly have been more comfortable with an established Hollywood presence in the lead, and they came very close to getting their wish. Cameron has admitted that Channing Tatum and Chris Evans, among other high-profile actors, have been considered for Jake Sully, the human marine who becomes the military leader of the planet Pandora’s indigenous people after gaining access to an alien avatar.
James Cameron would not follow Chris Evans or Channing Tatum into battle
Several well-known actors almost played Jake Sully avatar. Celebrities like Matt Damon, Chris Pratt, Chris Pine and Jake Gyllenhaal were considered for the role. Cameron conducted an international search that slowly reduced the number of candidates to a handful. Cameron offered Damon 10% of the film’s colossal back-end earnings if he agreed to play the lead, but Damon declined due to his commitments to the film bournes Franchise. Pine and Pratt recall that their audition went poorly. The last three actors considered for the role were Chris Evan, Channing Tatum and Sam Worthington.
After such an exhaustive search, Cameron (via Rich) that the last three actors all had more or less the same standard of performance. “Everyone did roughly the same thing throughout the script.” says Cameron: “until the final speech.“The director explains that Worthington has a “quality of the voice” which made for a powerful performance of the avatar line”This is our country. Drive now, drive as fast as the wind can carry you.“When Cameron heard Worthington’s reading, he said: “I would have followed him into battle. And I wouldn’t have followed the other guys.”
Why Sam Worthington was the best choice for Avatar
While it would have been a challenge for Channing Tatum and Chris Evans to land the role of Jake Sully, both actors have enjoyed successful careers in Hollywood. All in all, it’s the best Sam Worthington has come up with avatar. Cameron is right about the compelling quality of Worthington’s voice; In 2009, younger Tatum and Evans just didn’t have the seriousness that would make Jake Sully’s character as a military leader believable.
Additionally, Worthington’s lack of star power actually worked to his advantage in 2009. Cameron has stated that he balked at the idea of giving a recognizable face as Jake Sully. The director wanted audiences to see Sully as the character and not as a well-known Hollywood personality. While Worthington had some success in Australia, Tatum and Evans had previously acted in some major American films avatar. The CGI recreation of the lead actor in avatar form would likely have proved extremely distracting when presenting viewers with a transformed version of a highly recognizable Hollywood face.
https://screenrant.com/avatar-jake-casting-sam-worthington-channing-tatum-chris-evans-quote/ 1 avatar line that cost Chris Evans and Channing Tatum to star (but cast Sam Worthington)