Did you know that Will Smith passed up the blockbuster film, The Matrix, so he could make the Wild, Wild West (1994)? Would you have thought that Rihanna’s smash hit “Umbrella” was passed up by pop icon Britney Spears? The saying, one person’s trash is another person’s treasure is undoubtedly true in the entertainment industry. So many of our favorite films, television shows, and songs were offered or intended for completely different performers, than who landed the final project. Of course, everything happens for a reason and these celebrities always seem to land on their feet.
Recently, British singer, Leona Lewis, expressed some discontent in the music industry; “There are so many songs I’ve recorded, only to hear other people singing them,” Lewis told The Daily Star. “It happens all the time.” Lewis is referring to the song, “We Found Love”, the hit single by Calvin Harris and Rihanna. The song sold millions and reached the top of the charts in 25 countries. Lewis is obviously disappointed in the music industry overall, “It was a bit annoying to see how big a hit it was around the world, but if I’d released it, it wouldn’t have done as well.” Unfortunately for Lewis, that might very well be true, as the level of fame achieved by both pop stars is a world apart. Although their talent level may not be the same, celebrity status does increase record sales.
It isn’t uncommon for swaps such as this to occur in entertainment. For example, Kristen Stewart’s career defining role in Twilight was originally intended for Emily Browning. This pertinent role catapulted Stewart to the helm of fame and raked in millions of dollars domestically and internationally. These unknown stories of missed opportunities are also tales of great success.