Josh Hartnett is an actor who seemed to peak very early in his career. At one time he was everywhere, and slowly edging towards being a household name and serious Hollywood contender, when suddenly he all but disappeared. He took on some huge roles at first, in movies like Pearl Harbor and Black Hawk Down, but he also made a conscious step back from the spotlight, too.
There have been reports for years that Hartnett turned down three separate roles in major superhero franchises, however the actor has now clarified unequivocally that he only turned down one role, rather than the oft-rumoured three.
"I didn't turn down Spider-Man. I don't know where that came from. I'd only turned down Superman as a straight-up offer. But I was, at that time of my career, where a lot of people were asking me to do those types of movies. I was having meetings with those directors and people were saying: 'Would you be interested?'
I talked to them about what they were doing and I ultimately decided I wasn't, but that was a very privileged place for a young man to be in. I'm a little bit outside of the box and had the leverage to do that, and that's the direction I chose."
Hartnett has the kind of look that could be fitted to a lot of well known comic book superheroes, with the actor at one stage being fan-cast as almost every single DC and Marvel character. Evidently this was not of much interest to him, but with him now stating that the only role he was offered and turned down was Superman, it just goes to show how rampant the Hollywood rumour mill can be. Hartnett did then add that he at least had a conversation about playing the sought after role of Bruce Wayne aka Batman that eventually went to Christian Bale, but it did not go very far.
"No, Batman wasn't an audition or an offer. It was a conversation with the director [Christopher Nolan]. I think there's a lot of misinformation out there. When you say one thing one time about it, and now it gets blown up. But I don't really care to tell that story over and over again."
Of course, had Hartnett ended up in either of these roles his career would look very different to what it looks like today, though the actor has always stated his preference for smaller roles and lesser fame, so no doubt he is very happy with where he is, and so should he be.
With several projects set to be released, 2020 may end up being a big year for Josh Hartnett, with the actor having starring roles in the upcoming thriller Target Number One, Guy Ritchie crime drama Cash Truck and the television series Paradise Lost. This clarification comes to us from Variety.