Various people have been courted for the role of James Bond over the years during the periods where the role was being recast.
Back in the early 1990s, several were up for the role after Timothy Dalton exited the series. While it eventually went to Pierce Brosnan, the likes of Liam Neeson, Mel Gibson, Sam Neill and Hugh Grant were all considered.
Out doing “Non-Stop” promotional rounds, Neeson has spoken about turning down the chance to play 007. He tells Hull Daily Mail:
“I was heavily courted, let’s put it that way, and I’m sure some other actors were too. It was about 18 or 19 years ago and my wife-to-be [Natasha Richardson] said, ‘If you play James Bond we’re not getting married!’ And I had to take that on board, because I did want to marry her.”
Much like another heavily courted Bond candidate Clive Owen, Neeson has since gone on to a highly successful career as an action movie star in his own right.