Tom Hardy has gained a reputation for portraying intense and gritty characters over the years. But in the early days of his burgeoning career, the Warrior star ventured into auditions for a role of an entirely different nature.
Believe it or not, Hardy once tried his hand at the romance genre. While Hardy tried his best to land the lead in movies like Pride & Prejudice, he was “really hurt” after losing out on a part that ultimately went to Succession star Matthew Macfadyen.
Tom Hardy admits that losing this iconic role to a ‘Succession’ star ‘Really Hurt’
Despite all of the dark and broody characters he’s played, Hardy actually has a love for characters in classical stories. One of his favorite classic characters is Mr. Darcy from Pride & Prejudice.
In an interview with Telegraph, Hardy revealed that he auditioned for the role of Darcy in the 2005 film, Pride & Prejudice. MacFadyen, of course, eventually won the role and starred opposite Keira Knightley in the popular rendition.
But Hardy really thought he had a shot at the part. He even did his best impression of Hugh Grant in a bid to convince director Joe Wright that he was perfect for the part. When Universal Studios boss Stacey Snider broke the bad news to Hardy, the actor was completely gutted.
“That hurt, that really hurt,” Hardy recalled. “I’d worn a blue shirt and jeans and a blue blazer and been doing my best Hugh Grant impression. But now I was back to playing the wonky skewiff-teeth kid with the bow legs.”
Hardy noted that Snider told him exactly why he didn’t land the part. Trying to break it gently, Snider told him “every woman in the world has an impression of who Darcy is and you’re just not it.”
Tom Hardy accepts that he’s ‘obviously not a romantic lead’
While Succession star Macfadyen beat out Harden for the part of Darcy in Pride & Prejudice, his journey in Hollywood has included an array of iconic roles. From the formidable Bane to the fierce Tom Conlon, he has carved out a remarkable career.
Interestingly, Hardy admitted that delving into such narratives can sometimes be emotionally intense and challenging to fully explore. This is one reason he attempted to explore other, lighter, characters.
Unfortunately for Hardy, his plan didn’t work out. Apart from the Pride & Prejudice debacle, Hardy did land a part in the 2012 romcom This Means War. Needless to say, Hardy didn’t enjoy his brief stint in the world of romance.
In an interview with LA Times, Hardy revealed that he no longer seeks out romantic leads. After Pride & Prejudice and This Means War, Hardy finally realized those types of roles aren’t for him.
“I was like, ‘Fair enough.’ I’m obviously not a romantic lead, so I’m not going to focus a lot of my attention on being something that I’m not,” he stated. “I like to play people who’ve got a bit of range on them: a little bit of dark and a little bit of light.”
Matthew Macfadyen opens up about his iconic scene in ‘Pride & Prejudice’
Throughout the past two centuries, Mr. Darcy has cemented his status as one of the most remarkable romantic figures in popular culture. Countless talented actors have taken on the role over the years. This includes Colin Firth and Sir Laurence Olivier.
Yet, Macfadyen’s portrayal of Darcy in the 2005 adaptation possesses several unique qualities that make it truly stand out. Undoubtedly, one of the most breathtaking and unforgettable moments from the film is Darcy’s hand flex scene.
In speaking about the scene, Macfadyen revealed that his character’s hand flex wasn’t in the original script. According to Collider, the actor revealed that director Joe Wright is the one who came up with the idea.
“No, it’s credit to Joe, because he’s— I think, he doesn’t miss a trick, and he’s so alive to things, and he saw me do it in a rehearsal take and I remember him just going, ‘Get that!’ So they just did an extra shot on the hand,” Macfadyen explained.
Macfadyen went on to share his thoughts about playing Darcy on the big screens. The actor admitted that he worried about getting the character right, though we can all agree that he pretty much nailed it.