When it comes to casting, Quentin Tarantino often writes characters with particular actors in mind. This is why you tend to see many of the same performers popping up in his films time and time again. Even for the long-time Tarantino collaborators, however, there had to be a first time. A year ago it looked like one of the hottest stars in Hollywood was going to be the newest member of the Tarantino cast of characters, but ultimately Jennifer Lawrence said no. Now the director has opened up about what happened and why Lawrence didn’t join The Hateful Eight.
Generally speaking, Quentin Tarantino doesn’t bring established "movie stars" into his films, he’s more likely to make them stars by putting smaller names in his films. But Tarantino has put Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt in his movies before so the idea of Jennifer Lawrence being in a Tarantino movie is hardly a crazy one. The director counts himself among the actresses fans. It’s obvious he would have loved to have the actress in the film, but ultimately she was simply in too high demand.
She was just doing me a courtesy to see me, I think. She was doing Joy. She had to [do] all this publicity on the Hunger Games movies. There was just no fucking way in the world that she was available. Having said that, I’m glad I didn’t cast somebody that young. I think I absolutely positively made the right choice, as far as the ages of the characters.
The role of Daisy Domergue eventually went to Jennifer Jason Leigh instead. The ages of the character certainly changed. Jennifer Lawrence is all of 25. When Leigh was that age, Lawrence wasn’t even born yet. According to Entertainment Weekly, the role of Daisy was one of the few in the film that wasn’t written with a specific actor in mind. It appears Quentin Tarantino was looking to have the actor help create the role as well as read the lines. It certainly would have ended up being a much different part if Jennifer Lawrence had decided to do it.
While it may be true that there’s no way Lawrence would have been available to do the movie, her own movie, Joy, is opening on Christmas Day, the same day as The Hateful Eight and they likely had near-identical production schedules, we’d be curious to know if she wanted the role. Tarantino is one of those directors that actors seem to love to work with, thus all the repeat casting. Jennifer Lawrence seems to have the same relationship with David O. Russell that somebody like Samuel L. Jackson has with Tarantino, but if she would have done Hateful Eight, had she been able, it might mean that we could still see the two working together somewhere down the road when schedules work out better. We can only hope.
The Hateful Eight is the writer/director's eighth film, and he’s said he’s only going to make 10, though, so time is running out.