When The Expendables 3 cast additions were announced, they were mighty impressive: Ford (Han Solo/Indiana Jones), Gibson (Mad Max/Braveheart), Banderas (Desperado/Zorro) et al. All guys with a proven action track record and therefore kind of obvious, if total fantasy, candidates to sign up.
But what if along with these stars, you’d had Jack Nicholson?
That’s right, Jack Nicholson. Three-time Oscar-winning, bona fide screen legend; star of classics like Easy Rider and Chinatown; One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest and The Shining. Sure, he chewed scenery as The Joker in Tim Burton’s 1989 Batman, but an action blockbuster? That would be a departure, even for a man handy with a handgun in Scorsese’s crime epic The Departed.
Yet according to Stallone when IGN talked to him on the EX3 set, it was more than just wishful thinking. “I was going to go [call] up Jack Nicholson and we just got there a little too late, because actually he had said he might be interested in it,” he reveals.
“So there are still interesting avenues out there. I want to get, if possible, the most unique actors from the past and just put ‘em out there once and for all, you know? It just seems like an interesting… quest to do that, because I don’t know if it’s ever going to happen again. And we’re certainly not getting any younger.”
What’s fascinating about this idea is that for Stallone, it’s acting – not action – experience that counts. “It doesn’t automatically mean you have to be an action guy,” he confirms. “Like, Kelsey Grammer’s coming in [for Expendables 3].”
True, Grammer played the Hank McCoy/Beast in X-Men: The Last Stand, but you’re unlikely to meet anyone who’d recognize him more from that than his years as Frasier Crane in the hit comedies Cheers and Frasier.
“Kelsey’s a great comedian, great actor,” explains Stallone. “He’s done so many things from [TV drama] Boss to comedy. So you’re going to see him do something now, a unique role – he’s a mercenary’s agent. C’mon! Your client comes in with bullet holes, you’re going to take 10% off of him, It’s just a very interesting role.”
It’s those kind of unusual roles that might aid Stallone’s mission to cast unlikely veteran stars. Although even a great part might not be enough to snag one of his all-time heroes – screen legend Clint Eastwood.
“Well, you know Clint is so involved with what he’s doing, so that’s kind of a pipe dream,” Stallone says wistfully.
So that’s who Stallone wants for future Expendables installments, but who would be high on your list? Let us know in the comments, check out our choices from 2013 in the below video, and read more from the set in our in-depth feature.
See the published article on IGN – ‘Stallone Wants Nicholson and Eastwood For The Expendables’