Nia Long: ‘Why Wasn’t I Considered’ for ‘Avatar’ Over Zoe Saldaña?
“I think Zoe is amazing,” Long said. “But I wasn’t even a topic of discussion, you know?”
Nia Long has a long memory when it comes to roles she didn’t get.
The “You People” star admitted she’s felt “abandoned” by projects in the past and wondered why certain roles, such as co-starring in James Cameron’s blockbuster “Avatar,” were not considered before Zoe Saldaña was cast.
“It sure felt like they got away from things.” There were definitely moments like, “Why didn’t I consider that?” For example, why didn’t I consider it for “Avatar”? Long said the The cut cover story. “I think Zoe is wonderful.” But I wasn’t even a topic of discussion, you know?
Long continued: “To be fair, directors often know who they want. It happened to me, and not to me.”
The ‘Gone’ actress added: ‘I would love a movie like ‘Avatar’ because I’m really a fan and obsessed. I would even take a supporting role in a movie like that because it’s so magical and beautiful and has so many lessons and a connection to Mother Nature and humanity and the species. I think it’s just fantastic.”
Long revealed that while he hasn’t been asked to audition for roles in a while, he would be open to auditioning if it meant becoming a part of “Avatar 5” in some capacity.
“If somebody thought I wasn’t up to it, I would, I would,” Long said.
And the “Best Man” actress isn’t the only star who missed out on appearing in the historic first “Avatar” movie.
Matt Damon infamously turned down the lead role (and 10 percent of the proceeds) before Sam Worthington was hired.
“Jim Cameron offered me ‘Avatar,'” Damon revealed in 2019, “and when he offered it to me, he says, ‘Listen. I do not need anyone. I don’t need a name or a named actor for this. If you don’t take this, I’ll find an unknown actor and give it to him, because the film doesn’t really need you. But if you take the part, I’ll give you ten percent.”
Cameron invited Damon to join the film’s sequels so “the world will be balanced again”.
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