Last month, it was a little sad to find out that actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt had left Quentin Tarantino’s upcoming action-western Django Unchained. With the first photos of the film revealed, we still don’t know who will be replacing the actor in his role as one half of a Australian slave-owning duo. Now, it seems he’s not the only one leaving the project, as tow more very notable names have bowed out.
The Playlist and Variety report that both Sacha Baron Cohen and Kurt Russell have both left Django Unchained for varying reasons. Cohen told Howard Stern his role was going to simply be a cameo, and due to the press tour for The Dictator he simply didn’t have the time to film it. Russell, on the other hand, is unknown. Russell was set to have a larger role within the film, but apparently it seems the role was too small for the big star.
Cohen’s role was that of “Scotty Harmony, described in the script as an overweight 24 year-old whose father purchases a key female slave for him.” Originally, Jonah Hill was eyed for the character but the actor turned it down, leading to Cohen’s offer. It’s unclear who Tarantino will get to come into the cameo this time around, or even fill Russell’s role for that matter.
Russell’s role is to train the slaves inside Candieland, the plantantion for Leonardo DiCaprio’s villain where the sold individuals are forced to fight it out to the death. While Cohen’s role is just a quick one, it’s Russell’s that serves more of a weight. Given the crunch for time, Tarantino could call upon a past actor to possibly replace him. Perhaps who better to train them for violence then the man with a heart for horror Eli Roth?
Set in the South two years before the Civil War, “Django Unchained” stars Academy Award®-winner Jamie Foxx as Django, a slave whose brutal history with his former owners lands him face-to-face with German-born bounty hunter Dr. King Schultz (Academy Award®-winner Christoph Waltz). Schultz is on the trail of the murderous Brittle brothers, and only Django can lead him to his bounty. The unorthodox Schultz acquires Django with a promise to free him upon the capture of the Brittles – dead or alive.
Success leads Schultz to free Django, though the two men choose not to go their separate ways. Instead, Schultz seeks out the South’s most wanted criminals with Django by his side. Honing vital hunting skills, Django remains focused on one goal: finding and rescuing Broomhilda (Kerry Washington), the wife he lost to the slave trade long ago.
Django Unchained will be released this Christmas.