I love Marvel "What if?" casting stories. Tom Cruise was almost Iron Man. Daniel Craig was the first choice to play Thor. And now we are learning that The Office star John Krasinski auditioned to play Steve Rogers in Captain America: The First Avenger, and even made it as far as a costumed audition, before he took himself out of the race for one very funny reason.
Krasinski is making the rounds promoting his latest directorial effort, The Hollars, when he shared a story with Conan O'Brien. The actor was stepping into Cap's suit when, unexpectedly, Chris Hemsworth walked by in costume as Thor... and reality hit Krasinski like a star-spangled shield to the jaw. He tells Conan:
Hilarious. Listen, actors are paid to act, and become characters we don't expect to see on screen. John Krasinski is no less intimidating than Chris Evans is (or was) in real life. And if you saw Krasinski in Michael Bay's 13 Hours, you would have no problem believing him as a buff superhero in the Marvel universe.
The part of Steve Rogers probably would have been a lot funnier with Krasinski in the role. Now that we have seen the MCU play out, the Office star probably was a better fit for a Scott Lang (Paul Rudd), or even a Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner). Alas, it wasn't meant to be. The funny thing is, Krasinski's wife, Emily Blunt, also has been in the running for various Marvel roles over the years, from Black Widow to the recent casting decision on Captain Marvel. I wonder if the beautiful power couple discuss what might have been over the dinner table in their Hollywood home.
Listen to John Krasinski tell the amusing story of his brush with Marvel fame on Conan O'Brien's show:
Needless to say, the Captain America series survived without John Krasinski. The most recent edition, Captain America: Civil War, is the second highest grossing movie of the year (domestically), and it has set the stage for the next Avengers movie, of which we expect Cap to be a major part. Krasinski, meanwhile, has stayed busy acting and directing. His latest film, The Hollars, co-stars Anna Kendrick, Margo Martindale, Charlie Day, and Richard Jenkins. It's playing in limited release now.
Head to Page Two to read John Krasinski's recent comments about bringing the Fantastic Four to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.