New York, Aug 18 : A new book unveils hundreds of breakthrough roles that Hollywood celebrities have missed to date.
'Mickey Rooney as Archie Bunker and Other TV Casting Almosts' by Eila Mell reveals how Harrison Ford had been given the role of Meathead on 'All in the Family', and he turned down the classic part of Archie Bunker's son-in-law, Michael 'Meathead' Stivic, which it ended up becoming Rob Reiner's breakout role.
Another star to have missed out was Rosie O'Donnell, who lost the role as Jerry Seinfeld's female best friend, Elaine Benes, on "Seinfeld," to Julia Louis-Dreyfus.
The legendary Rooney was offered the Archie Bunker part but turned it down because he didn't want to play a bigot.
Whitney Houston turned down the role of Denise Huxtable on "The Cosby Show" because she wanted to have a singing career. Lisa Bonet took the part.
Rachel Dratch played Jenna Maroney in the pilot for "30 Rock," but producers pulled the part from her and gave it to sexpot Jane Krakowski.
Casting directors thought "The Office" cutie Jenna Fischer wasn't sexy enough to play Sydney Bristow on "Alias," so they handed the role to Jennifer Garner.
Leonardo DiCaprio almost landed on "Baywatch" as David Hasselhoff's son.
Courteney Cox's Monica Geller on "Friends" was nearly played by Nancy McKeon, who had finished "The Facts of Life" years earlier.
Mell had to talk to a number of filmmakers for writing the book.
"I interviewed tons of casting directors and discovered all these castings that didn't happen either because some turned down the role, or some didn't get it. Some were just totally wrong for the part and just auditioned," the New York Post quoted Mell as saying.
Mell has another book out all about movies, titled 'Casting Might Have Beens'.