Stephen King initially wanted to cast John Candy in THINNER – “We’ll pay him a nice sum of money and save his life”

The film adaptation of Stephen KingIt’s the horror thriller Thinner It’s not considered one of King’s best adaptations, but it tells an interesting story.

The story revolves around a morbidly obese lawyer named Billy Halleck, who accidentally hits an elderly Roma woman while driving under the influence. Thanks to his connections, Halleck manages to escape serious legal consequences, but the Roma woman’s father, Tadzu Lempke, curses him by touching his cheek and saying “thinner”.

As a result, Halleck begins to lose weight rapidly and uncontrollably, even though he continues to eat normally. Desperate to break the curse, he seeks help from various sources, including the law, medicine and, ultimately, the Roma community. However, as his weight continues to plummet, Halleck’s life descends into chaos, leading to a gripping, supernatural story of vengeance and redemption.

The film had a long and difficult road to getting made as it was constantly rejected by studios and spent a good five years in development hell. But, when the film was finally made, Robert John Burke he was cast in the lead role. However, King initially wanted John Candy to star in the film.

This information was revealed about recently released exclusive special features Thinner Blu-ray in a commentary track with an interview with producer Mitchell Galin. He explained that they actually contacted John Candy and made an offer. It wasn’t a joke, they also wanted to use the opportunity as a means to help the actor lose weight. Galin explained that a legitimate effort was made to cast Candy, but it didn’t work. He said:

“We contacted [John] Candy’s people. Steve’s comment was along the lines of, “We’ll pay him a nice sum of money and save his life.” (laughs) And for whatever reason, Candy was busy or didn’t feel like doing it [the material]… I really have no idea. At some point, you put it out there, if it doesn’t get the response you want, ultimately, I don’t really care. Unless it’s something necessary, a person who can help you move forward.

Accepting the part would have required John Candy to step significantly out of his comedic wheelhouse and act dramatically. Galin went on to say:

“The thing is, he wasn’t thrilled with the material or didn’t want to do it; whatever the reason is, you respect it and say, “These people make decisions all the time, make those creative decisions.” And you have to be respectful that they know what they can do and what they can’t do. Sometimes they are right, sometimes they are wrong, but that decision is not yours to make. So we reached out to him, got no positive feedback, and then we started the process of finding the protagonist, and I was a huge Robert Burke fan.

Robert John Burke ended up wearing a fat suit and did extensive makeup work for scenes early in the film, when the character was at his peak. The makeup and stuff didn’t look very good, but over the course of filming the movie, the actor ended up losing 20 pounds.

If Candy had accepted the role, it would have been very ambitious, but for the actor to lose so much weight in the short filming period seems impractical. But I can’t help but wonder how things would have turned out if Candy had said yes.

by Joey Paur
Source: Geek Tyrant

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