. . .
Basil Rathbone played other famous roles?
Did you know that Margaret
Mitchell wanted Basil Rathbone to play the part of Rhett Butler in Gone
with the Wind?* Nowadays
it's hard to imagine anyone other than Clark Gable as Rhett Butler, but
I'm sure that Basil would have given an excellent performance, too.
the Gone with the Wind poster might have looked like:
When I learned of Margaret Mitchell's
desire, I wondered, "What if Basil Rathbone had been cast in other famous
roles?" What if Basil Rathbone had played . . .
or perhaps Dr. Evil?
Ben, in The Graduate?
("Mrs. Robinson, you're trying to seduce me!")
What if the famous dancing team had been
Rathbone and Rogers?
Could Basil have replaced Patrick Swayze and danced with Jennifer Grey in
Darth Vader from Star Wars? Okay, that could be anyone behind
that mask. How about . . .
Have you ever imagined Basil
Rathbone playing one of your favorite characters? Be creative! Take any
photo of Basil from this site (or your own, if you have any) and combine
it with a photo of the role you imagine Basil could have performed. Then e-mail the finished photo to me
and I'll add it to this page.
|Here are some
wonderful contributions by Lisa Halverson, imagining Basil Rathbone as
. . .
Jack Sparrow, pirate
Neo, in The Matrix
Bonnie Shawcross contributed this great photo:
Instead of Lady Gaga, we present Lady Baza!
What if Basil Rathbone had played the Joker in Batman? Here's a
poster for a Batman movie that was never filmed.
Found this on the Internet: Orson
Welles began preproduction on his adaptation of Batman in 1946.
"Rumor has it that a treatment was written, costumes were designed and
actors were lined up. ... Apparently, Welles himself was going to take
on the dual role of Bruce Wayne and Batman ... Basil Rathbone was
apparently set to play the Joker, Marlene Dietrich was to play
Catwoman, George Raft was looking at Two-Face and ... James Cagney as
the Riddler. What apparently killed any possibility of Orson Welles'
Batman from being made was the fact that he wanted to play the lead,
while the studio was in favor of Gregory Peck. Legend has it that when
Welles found out about this, he immediately halted production and
never considered the property again."
Presumably this was a hoax perpetrated by comics writer Mark Millar in
2003. Nevertheless, it's a great poster and a great "What if"!
* "Although MGM star Clark Gable was
expected to play the role of the dashing war profiteer Rhett Butler, Errol
Flynn, Ronald Colman, and Gary Cooper were also considered for the part.
Author Margaret Mitchell told a reporter she favored Basil Rathbone for
the male lead" (www.filmsite.org/gone.html).
"An exchange of letters between [Margaret] Mitchell and
Kay Brown over the next eighteen months indicated that the author had no
'inside' knowledge about the casting of Rhett or any other roles, but
frequently related suggestions garnered from fellow Southerners and in July
1938 expressed the opinion that Gable was 'not as popular here in the
South as in other sections of the country...in looks and in conduct Basil Rathbone has been the first choice in this section' " (http://www.afi.com/members/catalog/DetailView.aspx?s=1&Movie=1181).