fictional characters 15 Famous Roles Christian Bale ALMOST Played  

Evan Lambert
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Though he may be unpredictable and often difficult, Christian Bale is pretty great at self-preservation. He's always made good, discerning choices when it comes to his acting roles. (Well, for the most part. Let's try and forget Exodus: Gods and Kings.) This is how he's ended up with an Oscar, and this is why he's a respected, though potentially disliked, celebrity. Christian Bale movies are usually always a safe bet in the box office.

Before his big break in American Psycho, however, the ambitious Bale tried his best to become a Hollywood star - and always seemed to trail behind Leonardo DiCaprio. You may actually be surprised to find that there are stories of Christian Bale auditioning for several high profile Hollywood roles before he became a household name. Later, once he finally hit Hollywood gold, Bale turned down several roles which still might have sent him down an entirely different career path. 

This list of roles that Christian Bale almost played reveals, among other things, that Christian Bale could have potentially been the next Hollywood heartthrob. If one certain director by the name of James Cameron had just made one slightly different casting choice, then Bale never would have gone on to forge a career playing gruff, damaged weirdos. Christian Bale movies run the gamut of quirky to insane, but it's difficult to think of him as a romantic lead for teen girls. 

Let your imagination run wild and check out this list of movies that Christian Bale almost starred in. There are roles that Christian Bale auditioned for, and roles that Bale turned down once he had that luxury. Most of them will surprise you. 


Anthony Swofford is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list 15 Famous Roles Christian Bale ALMOST Played
Photo: Universal Pictures

In a rare move, Bale lost this role to someone other than Leonardo DiCaprio. In fact, Leo lost this role too. It turns out they both dodged a bullet: The film, which aimed to reinvent the war movie, massively under-performed with critics and audiences. 

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Jack Dawson is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list 15 Famous Roles Christian Bale ALMOST Played
Photo: Freebase/Public domain

It's hard to imagine anyone else as Jack Dawson, but Christian Bale came close. In a slightly xenophobic move, director James Cameron opted for DiCaprio because he didn't want two Brits in his lead roles.

Also Ranked

#23 on The Best Fictional Characters Who Sacrificed Themselves

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Will Turner is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list 15 Famous Roles Christian Bale ALMOST Played
Photo:  Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl

Bale was considered - along with Ewan McGregor, Jude Law, and Tobey MacGuire - for the role of Pirates' resident heartthrob. Orlando Bloom won the role thanks to a popularity surge following Lord of the Rings.

Also Ranked

#27 on The Most Memorable Film Sidekicks Ever

#9 on The Greatest Pirate Characters in Film

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Robin Hood is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list 15 Famous Roles Christian Bale ALMOST Played
Photo: Universal

Ridley Scott briefly considered Bale for the role of Robin Hood, and was still in talks with him until a week before costume fittings began. 

Also Ranked

#83 on The Most Hardcore Big Screen Action Heroes

#12 on The Greatest Fictional Princes of All Time

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