Jack Reacher is the creation of author Lee Childs and first emerged in the 1997 novel The Killing Floor. Since Reacher made his literary debut more than 20 years ago, it was only a matter of time until a movie version was made. Finding an actor who matched Childs’ description was one of the biggest challenges facing the Jack Reacher movie.
It was noted by Screen Rant that even though Tom Cruise is one of the most versatile actors in the world, it’s fair to say that readers had mixed feelings about Cruise’s casting in Jack Reacher. Cruise’s height was just one of several things highlighted as a problem, but while Childs justified this decision, he was more satisfied with Alan Ritchson’s casting for Amazon’s Reacher series.
In the 1980s, the role would almost surely have been portrayed by Schwarzenegger or Stallone, but few artists from the 2000s onward fit that mold. One exception is actor-wrestler Dwayne Johnson, who has frequently acted alongside Kevin Hart and had the perfect physique and personality of Reacher down.
Johnson confirmed in 2017 that he pursued and attended an audition for the role, but Cruise ultimately won it. Even though Johnson playing Jack Reacher might seem obvious today, it’s also notable that his stardom wasn’t in the same place during that time. Johnson was praised as a new action star with films like The Scorpion King and Doom, but after a series of flops, he started to show up in comedies like The Tooth Fairy. His potential was undeniable, but he hadn’t yet landed his breakout role.
Although he was the right fit for Reacher, the studio obviously believed that he lacked the star power necessary to start a potential new franchise. However, Johnson admitted that while he was upset at the time, he is now glad Cruise received the role and that it was a learning opportunity in certain ways. Stay tuned to Thirsty for more updates.
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