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Tom Cruise got a big movie role ahead of Daniel Day-Lewis, here’s why

When it comes to the best Tom Cruise movies, you can't imagine anyone else in the role. But for this '90s movie, it was almost Daniel Day-Lewis.

Tom Cruise starred in '90s movies including A Few Good Men

It’s difficult to imagine there being a Tom Cruise movie in which people didn’t want him to play the lead role. Certainly, the likes of Top Gun Maverick and Mission Impossible 7 wouldn’t trade him for the world.

However, the casting of Cruise in one of his ‘90s movies triggered a furore, as people imagined someone else in the horror movie role. As with many of the best movies based on books, the fans saw things differently to those making the decisions.

Interview With the Vampire came out in 1994 and adapted Anne Rice’s debut novel, with Cruise in the lead vampire movie role as Lestat. But for a lot of people, including co-star Brad Pitt, it was Daniel Day-Lewis they really wanted.

“Everybody wanted Daniel – though I imagine he didn’t want to sleep in a coffin [for preparation],” said director Neil Jordan in an interview with The Independent.

Despite what everyone else thought, Jordan wanted Cruise for the role. “I’ve always thought he’s a great actor, but his life is also not unlike the life of a vampire, you know what I mean? Famous people don’t want to go out into an unmediated space.

“They have to control who they meet and how they meet them. They have to control their image. It’s almost like they live in a spectral kind of world. Just as an analogy, that made sense to me. So we agreed to do the film together, and then everybody got really angry.”

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The opprobrium around the casting was so intense that Jordan revealed he was once approached by an Anne Rice fan in New Orleans who had a tattoo on her butt of the late Rutger Hauer in the role of Lestat. That’s taking fandom to the next level.

For more of the best movies ever made, check out our lists of the best ’80s movies or the best 2000s movies. We’ve also got you covered on the new movies heading to cinemas, including the Oppenheimer release date and the Evil Dead Rise release date. Or for more vampires, here’s everything we know about the Renfield movie release date.