Van Damme turned down Stallone's The Expendables
It seems that Jean-Claude Van Damme had the chance to sign up to Sylvester Stallone's film The Expendables and even had Stallone on the phone to him personally offering him the role.
However for some insane reason he turned it down and the result was the Filmstalker story of Dolph Lundgren getting signed up.
So that's cool on the Dolph Lundgren front, but Jean-Claude Van Damme saying no?! What was he thinking? Well apparently he doesn't want to have his career going down “that route” - that route? What, a huge cast action film that could propel him back into the mainstream spotlight?
Well maybe, that seems to be what he's saying if the rumour is true.
“They offered the role to a couple of other actors, like JCVD, before they went to Dolph...
...Seems as soon as Van Damme nixed Sly's offer...Sly went to the other Universal Soldier and offered him the part.”
Oh dear me, what has he done. There's a by-line there that a part may have been offered to Arnold Schwarzenegger, but the production couldn't take the cost and Arnie is far too busy anyway, despite looking out for projects.
That aside though, Van Damme turning down this project is a real missed opportunity. With Sylvester Stallone calling you up and offering you a role in his latest action film, hot off the success of a revived, and closed, Rambo and Rocky Balboa (Filmstalker review), what do you say?
It make you wonder what direction Van Damme wants to go, definitely not that of fame and fortune I imagine, and from the sounds of it definitely not one of mainstream action films.
With Van Damme appearing in Universal Soldier III: A New Beginning you might be thinking what the different is, it would seem he's just choosing not to become mainstream.
Irony indeed though, as Dolph Lundgren gets passed up for Universal Soldier 3, he takes the place that Van Damme turned down in The Expendables alongside Stallone, Jet Li and Jason Statham. Stacking these against each other in the box office I know which one will win, after all Universal Soldier 3 won't even make it to a box office.