For most of us, hearing the name Mark Wahlberg may still bring to mind images of Calvin Klein boxer briefs, but the man has a lot of pull in Hollywood. He's credited as an executive producer on HBO hits Boardwalk Empire and Entourage after all and impressed fans and critics with his performances in films like The Departed and The Fighter. And if he had gotten his way, he would also be producing Fifty Shades of Grey as one of his next projects.
During the Hollywood Reporter's Producers Roundtable, the man previously known as Marky Mark shared how the flick ended up becoming the one that got away ...
I almost fired my agent Ari [Emanuel] over [Fifty Shades]—not because I wanted to play the part. We were aware of the book from very early on, and we were close to securing the rights, and then we get into this bidding war. We were so close to having [it]. That was one of the few times I was going to fire Ari.
Ha! Sounds like he had reason to, especially considering he also had some big plans for the flick if he had gotten his hands on the rights. Even though current producer Michael De Luca joked that E.L. James' mercurial billionaire "looks a lot like Mark Wahlberg" in his eyes, Mark had different plans for the lead role.
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He apparently noted, "[Christian] sounds like Brad Pitt to me!" Um. No? I guess Mark didn't read all that closely, because Angelina Jolie's fiance is approaching the big 5-0 next month, and Christian Grey is supposed to be all of, what, 28? So silly.
Then again, the association may stem from something other than age. Walhberg admitted later in the event that he "wanted to produce because I was never going to get the script first. I had to wait for Brad Pitt to pass." Ah, so he's jealous of the guy's power! Well, in that case, I could definitely understand why he would have seen him as Christian ... but, err, no one else could've, right? So probably best ol' Marky didn't get his way after all!
How would you have felt about Brad Pitt as Christian Grey ... or Mark Wahlberg, for that matter?!
Image via Caroline Bonarde Ucci/Wikimedia