Jennifer Lawrence may have won an Oscar for her role in Silver Linings Playbook, but that Academy Award could have gone to Anne Hathaway. Producer Harvey Weinstein revealed on Wednesday that Hathaway originally signed on for Lawrence's role but backed out because of "creative differences" with the movie's director, David O. Russell. Lawrence played a widow dealing with mental illness in the Oscar-winning film.
Weinstein discussed his Anne Hathaway/Jennifer Lawrence switch during an appearance on The Howard Stern Show. Stern noted that Hathaway must be "kicking herself" for leaving an Oscar-winning role. But Weinstein disagreed.
Indeed, Anne Hathaway also won an Oscar last year for her role as Fantine in the blockbuster musical. So this casting switch worked out for everyone in the end.
Weinstein was likely happy with the change, as well. He noted how Jennifer Lawrence blew everyone away during her Silver Linings Playbook audition.
"Then Jennifer Lawrence and two or three other actress came in, and the minute we saw Jennifer Lawrence's tape," he continued. "... Because I said, 'How the hell are we gonna replace Annie?' And then this amazing creature walked in who is a brilliant actress, and so much fun, and she won an Oscar."
And unlike Anne Hathaway, Jennifer Lawrence apparently had no issues with David O. Russell. The two reunited for the 2013 flick American Hustle, and Lawrence is expected to earn another Oscar nomination for her role in that film. In fact, the actress said in 2012 that she signed on for Silver Linings Playbook specifically for the chance to work with Russell.
"He's really my favorite director since I started watching movies," she stated during a press conference at the Toronto International Film Festival. "That was an easy decision. I really wanted to work with him."
And the Anne Hathaway/Jennifer Lawrence swap was not the only casting change the Silver Linings Playbook producers made. Mark Wahlberg originally signed on to star as a man struggling with bipolar disorder, but the role was later given to Bradley Cooper.
Before leaving this Jennifer Lawrence role in Silver Linings Playbook, Anne Hathaway was no stranger to dropping out of projects. She famously turned down the lead role in Judd Apatow's hit, Knocked Up, because she did not want to film a graphic birth sequence. The job instead went to Katherine Heigl.
"My issue with it was that having not experienced motherhood myself, I didn't know how I was gonna feel on the other side about giving birth," Hathaway told Allure.
Do you think Anne Hathaway would have been better than Jennifer Lawrence in Silver Linings Playbook? Compare the two actresses' Oscar-winning performances in the videos below. And let us know your thoughts in our comments section!