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Bruce Dern replaces Burt Reynolds in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

Bruce Dern Quentin Tarantino The Hateful Eight I was really excited when it was announced a few months ago that Burt Reynolds had been cast in writer/director Quentin Tarantino's new film ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD, which is set in 1969 Los Angeles and deals with the Manson Family in some way. Reynolds was one of my favorite actors, the star of several of my favorite movies, and I was excited to see him working with Tarantino... but sadly, it wasn't to be. Reynolds had not yet started working on the film when he passed away earlier this month.

Tarantino needed to find someone else who could take on the role Reynolds had been set to fill, that of George Spahn, "an 80-year-old blind man who rented his Los Angeles ranch out to be used as a movie set for Westerns. Charles Manson convinced Spahn to allow him and his followers to live on the ranch in the months before they murdered Tate and six others." He has now found Reynolds' replacement: Bruce Dern has signed on to play Spahn.

This will be Tarantino's third time working with Dern. The 82-year-old actor, who has 170 acting credits to his name and received Academy Award nominations for his work on 1979's COMING HOME and 2014's NEBRASKA, previously appeared in Tarantino's films DJANGO UNCHAINED and THE HATEFUL EIGHT (pictured above).

ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD stars Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt in the story of 

Rick Dalton (DiCaprio), former star of a Western TV series, and his longtime stunt double Cliff Booth (Pitt). Both are struggling to make it in a Hollywood they don’t recognize anymore. But Rick has a very famous next-door neighbor… Sharon Tate.

There had been a push among fans of the grindhouse era for Tarantino to hire 85-year-old actor / stuntman Gary Kent for the role of George Spahn, as Kent actually lived of a version of the story Tarantino appears to be telling here. While working on films in the late '60s, Kent went to the Spahn Ranch and encountered members of the Manson Family there. It would have been cool to see Kent in this film, but I can't argue with the casting of Bruce Dern.

The rest of the cast we know about: Margot Robbie as pregnant actress Sharon Tate, who was murdered by the Manson Family; Rafal Zawierucha as Tate's husband, filmmaker Roman Polanski; Emile Hirsch as Jay Sebring, a friend and Hollywood hairstylist who was murdered by Tate's side; Costa Ronin as actor Voytek Frykowski, who was also murdered at Tate and Polanski's home; Samantha Robinson as Frykowski's girlfriend, Folger coffee heiress Abigail Folger, who was also murdered by members of the Manson Family; Rumer Willis as British actress Joanna Pettet; Dreama Walker as actress/singer Connie Stevens; Luke Perry as Wayne Maunder, co-star of a Western series called Lancer; Clifton Collins Jr. as Ernesto the Mexican Vaquero; Keith Jefferson as Land Pirate Keith; 1970s TV Spider-Man Nicholas Hammond as real life actor/director Sam Wanamaker; Dakota Fanning as Squeaky Fromme, "the Manson disciple who later tried to assassinate President Gerald Ford"; Al Pacino as Rick's agent Marvin Schwarz; Scoot McNairy as Business Bob Gilbert, a cowboy on a Western TV show; Michael Madsen as the sheriff on a Western TV show; Spencer Garrett as Allen Kincade, "an interviewer of Hollywood's A-list"; Eddie Perez as Land Pirate Eddie; Maurice Compte as Land Pirate Mao; Damian Lewis and Mike Moh as iconic actors Steve McQueen and Bruce Lee; Damon Herriman as Charles Manson (a role he'll also be playing on the next season of the Netflix series Mindhunter); Austin Butler as homicidal Manson Family member Charles "Tex" Watson; Lena Dunham as Manson Family member Catherine "Gypsy" Share; Margaret Qualley as Manson Family member Kitty Kat (based on Kathryn "Kitty" Lutesinger); Madisen Beaty as Manson Family member and convicted murderer Katie (Patricia Krenwinkel) - a person she previously played on the television series Aquarius; and Victor Pedretti as Manson Family member / convicted murderer Lulu (Leslie Van Houten).

Danny Strong, Sydney Sweeney, James Landry Hébert, Mikey Madison, Clu Gulager,  Maya Hawke, Lorenza Izzo, James Remar, Martin Kove, Brenda Vaccaro, Nichole Galicia, Zoe Bell, Kurt Russell, Tim Roth, Timothy Olyphant, James Marsden, Marco Rodríguez, Ramón Franco, Raul Cardona, and Julia Butters are also in the cast, taking on unspecified roles.

ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD will begin marching its massive cast across theatre screens when it's released on July 26, 2019.
 

Source: THR

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