A little TV/movie trivia for you, just for fun...
—Al Bundy on "Married...With Children" always bragged about his exploits on the gridiron for Polk High School. The man who played him, actor Ed O'Neill, actually was a football player in real life. He was drafted and cut by the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1969. He was also once considered (and turned down, thankfully) for the role of the father on the saccharine "Family Ties".
—Actor Mike Riley—best known for playing Tarzan in three films in the '60s, as well as Col. Penobscott on "M*A*S*H" and Junior in Smokey And The Bandit—actually did play for the Steelers, as well as the L.A. Rams. He was a linebacker in the late '50s and early '60s.
—Film legend Spencer Tracy was offered the role of The Penguin on TV's "Batman" before Burgess Meredith got it. Lyle Waggoner lost out to Adam West for the show's title role, too. Maybe there IS a God after all...
—John Voight turned down the role of oceanographer Matt Hooper in Jaws. Dummy.
—John Belushi was slated to be in Ghostbusters in the role that subsequently went to Ernie Hudson.
—Just sit right back, and you'll hear a tale—a little "Gilligan's Island" trivia for you: The late Jayne Mansfield was considered for the role of Ginger. Ginger's last name was Grant...Gilligan's first name was Willie, although it was never mentioned on the show...The Skipper's name was Jonas Grumby (he's Grumby, dammit!) and The Professor's name was Roy Hinkley...The Wellingtons sang the show's famous theme song...Actor Jerry Van Dyke (later of "Coach" fame) passed on the role of Gilligan because he thought it was "the worst thing I've ever read."
—Howie Mandel of "Deal Or No Deal" provided the voice of Gizmo in the film Gremlins.
—Anybody remember the '70s kids show "Isis"? Actress JoAnna Cameron was also considered for the role that went to Ali McGraw in 1970's Love Story.
—Film legend Lana Turner allegedly dated Judge Joseph Wapner in high school. Wonder if Rain Man knew that...
—Among those who auditioned for "The Monkees" and were turned down: Harry Nilsson, Stephen Stills, Danny Hutton (later of Three Dog Night), songwriter Paul Williams and—keep your smelling salts handy, now—charming Charles Manson!