007 bosses are currently on the hunt for the next actor destined to take over from Daniel Craig as James Bond. The British star played the suave hero in five films across 15 years – but before he landed the gig, he went up against a major Australian star. Sam Worthington was at the top of the list of the Bond bosses Barbara Broccoli and Michael G Wilson.
Worthington is back in the conversation as he stars in the newly released Avatar sequel – Avatar: The Way of Water. And during a new interview, he opened up about being turned down for the role of James Bond back in 2005 for Casino Royale.
The 46-year-old star explained that he was flown out to London, UK, and was filmed doing the scene that every potential Bond actor is tasked with performing; a risqué moment shown in From Russia With Love.
Worthington then revealed Broccoli was particularly attentive to him before the audition. She reportedly “went to his hotel room before the screen test to personally cut his hair to match her vision of Bond”.
Unfortunately, it was the screen test itself that ruined his chances.
Worthington said he struggled with one major aspect of playing James Bond. “I could play Bond as a killer,” he said. “But I couldn’t get the debonair down for the life of me.”
What’s more, there were other issues with the attire he was given to play out the audition. He remembered: “The suit did not fit,” before sullenly adding: “I had no idea what I was doing.”
Although his audition didn’t pan out how he wanted it to, the Jake Sully actor did not have a bad word to say about the Bond bosses, Broccoli and Wilson.
Worthington compared the sibling duo to James Cameron, the Avatar director. He said: “They are so detailed and meticulous. They are protective and passionate about this series. What I learned is that you listen to these people. It’s the same thing with James Cameron. He’s done all the research and there’s nothing you can’t ask him that he doesn’t have an answer for.”
Despite not getting the role of James Bond in the 2006 movie Casino Royale, he claimed the role of Sully in Avatar just three years later. The science-fiction movie then went on to become the highest-grossing movie of all time – earning more than $2.9 billion in total – so he didn’t do too badly.
Worthington also wasn’t the only major Hollywood star to lose out on the role. Henry Cavill famously got to the final auditions for Casino Royale and lost out because of his weight.
Casino Royale’s director Martin Campbell reportedly told the Superman star he was looking a “little chubby”. He admitted he did not know how to “diet or train” at the time.
Cavill lost the role to Craig, but the British hunk has since expressed gratitude for even having the opportunity in the first place.
Other names that lost out to Craig include Sam Heughan and Clive Owen.