14 Actors Who Were Rejected From TV Roles Because Of Their Looks, Age, Race, Or Other Unfair Reasons

·9 min read

When you're an actor, not getting the role you hoped for sucks. Most of the time, the casting directors are just trying to go with the best person for the part, but sometimes, they reject talented actors for incredibly ridiculous reasons.

CBC / Via giphy.com

Here are 14 TV roles that actors didn't get for the most ridiculous reasons:

1.Chris Pine's audition for Ryan Atwood in The O.C. was "really really really good" — but he was rejected because of his acne.

Chris Pine smiling
Daniel Knighton / Getty Images for Paramount Pictures

Casting director Patrick Rush told the Welcome to the OC, Bitches! podcast, "This is painful. At the time Chris Pine’s skin was really, really bad, and that broke my heart because I was a kid with acne. I remember thinking he was so good."

a young Chris Pine
Frazer Harrison / Getty Images

The role went to Ben McKenzie.

Ben McKenzie on "The OC"
Fox / Via youtube.com

2.Regé-Jean Page reportedly wasn't cast as Seyg-El (Superman's grandfather) on Krypton because of his race.

Regé-Jean Page in a tux
Mike Marsland / Mike Marsland / WireImage / Via Getty

The executive overseeing the production allegedly said, "Superman could not have a Black grandfather." However, he denied the reports.

Superman uniform
Ian Walton / Getty Images

In a statement, his representatives said that he "never said Superman can't have a Black ancestor or be Black — there have been diverse versions of Superman throughout the comics for decades so he does and can be diverse."

In response to the reports, Regé-Jean tweeted, "Hearing about these conversations hurts no less now than it did back then. The clarifications almost hurt more tbh."

Regé-Jean Page posing for a photo at an event
Mike Marsland / Mike Marsland / WireImage / Via Getty

He continued, "Still just doing my thing. Still we do the work. We still fly."

The role went to Cameron Cuffe.

Cameron Cuffe as Superman's grandfather
Steffan Hill / ©Syfy / courtesy Everett Collection

3.In the '80s, Sheryl Lee Ralph landed a role in a pilot, but a producer fired her and told her she was "not Black enough."

Sheryl Lee Ralph smiling
Michael Ochs Archives / Getty Images

She told People, "Those were his words. It was horrible. I can still remember the way I felt."

Sheryl Lee Ralph smiling
Paras Griffin / Getty Images for CMPR Inc.

"People's thinking was not very inclusive. You [had] directors who were still trying to tell you how to be Black," she said.

4.Daniel Kaluuya once went through 10 rounds of auditions for an English show about aliens. In the end, it came down to him and a white actor for the lead — and he realized his competitor had been given an advantage.

Daniel Kaluuya on a talk show
Nbc / NBC / NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

He told the Sunday Times, "I realized as I was going to one audition that the other guy had been given an acting coach. They didn’t love me like they loved him."

Daniel Kaluuya at an event
Prince Williams / Getty Images

He continued, "In any other profession, that would be weird, but it was accepted in mine. It happened a few times, and I went, 'Nah. I’m not an idiot.'"

5.Lisa Edelstein had a contract in place to star as Carrie Bradshaw in Sex and the City — until Sarah Jessica Parker finally made up her mind.

Lisa Edelstein smiling
Steve Granitz / FilmMagic / Via Getty

Lisa told Access Online, "I was either going to do it or not. It all depended on whether she said yes."

Lisa Edelstein at the SAG Awards
Kevin Mazur / Getty Images for WarnerMedia

After Sarah decided to take the part, Lisa was dropped, and she found the show "was too painful" to watch.

Sarah Jessica Parker standing outside a building
Kristin Callahan/Everett Collection

6.Alden Ehrenreich was initially casting director David Rapaport's first choice for Dan Humphrey in Gossip Girl, but the producers decided he wasn't "tall enough" to play Blake Lively's love interest.

Alden Ehrenreich on the red carpet
Frazer Harrison / Getty Images for Paramount Pictures

Alden is 5'9", and Blake is 5'10".

Alden Ehrenreich holding a mic; Blake Lively at the Met Gala
Jun Sato / WireImage via Getty / GWR/Star Max/GC Images / Via Getty

The role went to Penn Badgley, who's 5'9".

Blake Lively and Penn Badgley holding hands on "Gossip Girl"
Giovanni Rufino / © The CW / Courtesy Everett Collection

7.Mark Webber played Grey McConnell in the Stumptown pilot, but when the show was picked up by ABC, he was fired — a decision he claimed was made because of his looks.

a closeup of Mark Webber
Gilbert Carrasquillo / Getty Images

He tweeted, "Look, I’m a straight white male so I know my journey has been way less painful in this warped industry, but I’m being recast in a network television show because I’m not handsome enough for the executives."

Mark Webber on the red carpet
Gilbert Carrasquillo / Getty Images

He continued, "The way I was treated was so degrading. These 'executive' decisions are why network TV is dying."

closeup of Mark Webber
Albert L. Ortega / Getty Images

The role went to Jake Johnson.

Jake Johnson standing behind a bar
ABC / Via youtube.com

8.Early in her career, Mindy Kaling was offered her own sketch comedy show, but the network made her audition for the role of herself — then decided she wasn't "attractive or funny enough" to play the part.

Mindy Kaling on the red carpet
Steve Granitz / FilmMagic / Via Getty

She told the Guardian, "That network is no longer on the air, and The Office went on to be one of NBC's most hit shows in years. I feel like karmically, I was vindicated, but at the time it felt terrible."

closeup of Mindy Kaling
Mark Sagliocco / WireImage / Via Getty

9.Alicia Silverstone was co-producer Edward Zwick's first choice for Angela Chase on My So-Called Life, but co-producer Marshall Herskovitz thought she was too pretty for the role.

Alicia Silverstone sitting on a couch
Nbc / NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Marshall told the New Yorker, "Alicia is so beautiful that that would have affected her experience of the world. People would have been telling her she was beautiful since she was six years old. You can’t put that face in what’s been written for this girl."

Alicia Silverstone at an event
Ron Galella, Ltd. / Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

The part instead went to Claire Danes.

Claire Danes smiling
Jeffery Newbury / TV Guide /© ABC / Courtesy Everett Collection

10.Mädchen Amick got "really far in the testing process and almost got the part of Lorelai" on Gilmore Girls, but the network decided she "didn’t seem old enough to be a mother."

closeup of Mädchen Amick
Walter Mcbride / Corbis via Getty Images

She told TVLine, "The network said I didn’t seem old enough to be a mother, which I had thought was kind of the whole point."

Mädchen Amick at an event
Rodin Eckenroth / FilmMagic / Via Getty

The role went to Lauren Graham.

Lauren Graham on "Gilmore Girls"
Marsha Blackburn / ©The CW /Courtesy Everett Collection

However, Mädchen got her chance to visit Stars Hollow when series creator Amy Sherman-Palladino brought her back as Sherry Tinsdale in three episodes.

Mädchen Amick as Sherry Tinsdale
The WB / Via youtube.com

11.Teo Halm was initially cast as Elliot Matthews — Cory and Topanga's oldest child — on Girl Meets World. However, his character was axed after the pilot.

Teo Halm at an event
Rodin Eckenroth / Getty Images

Sharing the news on Twitter, he said, "So guys, Disney decided that it wouldn’t work to have an older brother on the show; I won’t be on Girl Meets World. Thank you to everyone."

Teo Halm as a child with two other child actors
James Lemke Jr / WireImage / Via Getty

When Boy Meets World ended in 2000, Cory and Topanga didn't have any children. Girl Meets World premiered in 2014, when Teo was 15, so it's possible Disney decided that including Elliot in the series wouldn't have fit with the show's timeline. They made Riley Matthews, the main character, 12 years old at the start of the show.

In response, Danielle Fishel, who plays Topanga, tweeted, "Teo, you are an incredible talent and I adore you. You may still call me 'mom.'"

Topanga smiling at a breakfast table
Ron Tom/©Disney Channel / courtesy Everett Collection

12.Jenna Fischer played Andi Burns in the Man with a Plan pilot, but her episode never aired outside of the 2016 CBS Upfronts. The network announced its decision to recast her before the preview.

Jenna Fischer on the red carpet
Axelle / FilmMagic / Via Getty

The decision reportedly came down to her lack of chemistry with co-star Matt LeBlanc. Then-president of entertainment at CBS Glenn Geller told the Wrap, "It was fine, we think we can do better in terms of the chemistry between the two of them."

closeup of Jenna Fischer
Leonard Adam / WireImage / Via Getty

The part went to Liza Snyder.

Liza Snyder and Matt LeBlanc looking at something together
Darren Michaels / ©CBS / Courtesy Everett Collection

13.Comedian and podcaster Marc Maron felt that he lost his chance at joining the cast of Saturday Night Live over a piece of candy he took from Lorne Michaels' desk.

Marc Maron standing with his hand in his pocket
Lester Cohen / Getty Images for The Bob Dylan Center

He told the New York Times, "I think I was a little high on pot. There were some pictures facing [Mr. Michaels], and in front of the pictures was a bowl of candy. It was all very loaded."

Marc Maron smiling on a talk show
Nbc / NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

"Then he just starts looking at me, to a point where Steve Higgins [then an SNL producer] goes, 'Lorne?' And Lorne goes, 'You can tell a lot by looking into someone’s eyes.' And then I took a candy," he continued.

a hand reaching into a candy jar
Helen King / Getty Images

He said, "Lorne looked at Steve, and the meeting was over. I thought I failed the candy test."

closeup of Marc Maron
Tommaso Boddi / FilmMagic / Via Getty

However, when Lorne visited Marc's WTF podcast years later, he clarified that his rejection had nothing to do with the candy — SNL simply didn't have a spot for him.

Lorne Michaels backstage
Nbc / NBCU Photo Bank / NBCUniversal via Getty Images

Lorne said, "I think you were ready. I think it was, I didn’t have — I learned early on that if you bring people in and there’s no real spot for them... Writers will always go with whoever came through for them on the last show. And so they will go with the performer that they know can deliver, and it’s just harder."

14.And finally, on How I Met Your Mother, Lily Aldrin's second baby was supposed to be played by one of Alyson Hannigan's daughters — Satyana and Keeva Denisof — but the producers decided her kids were "too old."

Alyson Hannigan with her two children
Michael Bezjian / Via Getty

Alyson told HuffPost, "I was like, 'You fired my child. First of all that’s ageism. I don’t think you’re allowed to fire her because she’s too old.'"

Alyson Hannigan with her husband and kids
Vivien Killilea / WireImage / Via Getty

The role of Daisy Eriksen was played by an uncredited baby.

Alyson with Jason Segel and a baby sitting together on steps
Cliff Lipson/©CBS / courtesy Everett Collection

Did we miss any of your favorite actors who got rejected from a role for a ridiculous reason? Let us know in the comments!