10 'Creatively Different' Film Castings

9 - Kurtz (Marlon Brando)

When Mr. Kurtz is finally discovered by the protagonist of Heart of Darkness, Marlow, he is described as an apparition of sunken eyes, a ghastly 7' frame carried by his Congolese worshippers in a stretcher, too weak to even stand. When his cover is removed, every rib is visible in his terrible, emaciated condition. This was actually the exact same portrayal that Francis Ford Coppola intended to use in Apocalypse Now. The only problem was that his Colonel Kurtz, Marlon Brando, arrived on the set extremely over-weight. Poor Coppola changed the script (multiple times), the vision of the character, and hid Brando in perpetual shadows to compensate. Would a deathly frail megalomania have been more effective than a fat, effusive one? Could Marlon Brando's delivery of the movie-defining monologue been captured by anyone else? In our opinion, HELL NO. It's better to be lucky than good.
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Robert Curtis is a columnist, podcaster, screenwriter, and WhatCulture.com MMA editor. He's an American abroad in Australia, living vicariously through his PlayStation 3. He's too old to be cool, but too young to be wise.