John Malkovich Initially Didn't Want to Be the Subject of 'Being John Malkovich'

When he was first introduced to the film, the actor wanted to direct it with Tom Cruise in the titular role instead
John Malkovich Initially Didn't Want to Be the Subject of 'Being John Malkovich'
John Malkovich has revealed that, when it came to being the subject of Charlie Kaufman's 1999 feature film debut, cult favourite Being John Malkovich, he wasn't too keen at first.

In a new interview with NME, the actor said that initially he didn't even want to be in the film, but would have been happy to direct in place of Spike Jonze. He has also said that he would have cast Tom Cruise in his role if given the chance.

"Why not Being Tom Cruise I asked?" Malkovich said of being cast in the titular role. "Charlie told me quite clearly that he had no desire to change it, and that he was going to direct, so I said OK."

Confused about the inspiration for the screenplay, Malkovich learned that Kaufman was searching for an individual with "a quality of unknowability."

"I don't really think anyone is knowable if I'm unknowable," Malkovich told NME.

"To be honest, I never actually thought that it would get made," he continued. "I remember those years when it remained un-produced. Whenever I got to Hollywood for some press thing or whatever, invariably I'd be in some hotel lobby or in some restaurant or at some vintage lamp store, and somebody would come up to me and say, 'Hey, why aren't you making Being John Malkovich?' Eventually, we did it, and honestly, I was just happy to be a part of it."

Along with Malkovich, the movie also starred John Cusack, Cameron Diaz and Catherine Keener.

Malkovich most recently starred in Netflix's newest workplace comedy, Space Force, alongside Steve Carell and Greg Daniels.