Acclaimed actor Robert De Niro is one of the best actors in the Hollywood industry. While we have been blessed to witness the artistry of the legendary actor on screen in various roles, we do miss enjoying him as a comedic actor. He even nabbed one such role but was eventually fired from the movie and replaced by another iconic actor. During an appearance at the recent Tribeca Festival in New York City, De Niro shared that he was hired for the film The Goodbye Girl, but the role slipped out of his hands and went to legendary actor Richard Dreyfuss.

According to a report by People, De Niro appeared at a Q&A hosted by director Quentin Tarantino after a screening of their 1997 film Jackie Brown. During the conversation, the actor reflected on his career and narrated his chaotic experience on the set of The Goodbye Girl, which was directed by Mike Nichols.

To date, the actor has given various incredible movies. But at this moment, De Niro confessed candidly that being fired from a film was indeed a rare moment of truth, who had previously maintained sealed lips on this topic.

Why was Robert De Niro fired from a film?

Indeed, it’s quite hard to digest that Oscar-winning actor Robert De Niro was rejected from a role. But perhaps sometimes things happen for the best. The film for which the actor was chosen was originally titled Bogart Slept Here. Ever since his selection for the film, De Niro knew that he wasn’t the right fit for the role in the romantic comedy. While the actor was well aware of his being a bad fit for the genre, he even recalled hearing crew members telling each other that he wasn’t very funny. De Niro said, “I shot for about two weeks. It was the worst. I was sitting in my camper, and you feel this dread of just, just not working. I couldn’t have felt worse at that moment.” 

Eventually, filmmaker Mike Nichols fired De Niro, who claimed it was one of “maybe three times in my life I’ve ever had that kind of experience with [a] director.” The moment was indeed difficult for the director as well. The actor recalled that Nichols struggled with his decision and felt “really terrible” about firing him.

Once De Niro was out of the project, his space was filled by hiring Richard Dreyfuss. Moreover, it wasn’t just De Niro who got replaced, as even Nichols left the movie, replaced by Herbert Ross. The film went under renovation as Neil Simon began rewriting the script, and the film was retitled The Goodbye Girl. Released in 1977, the film earned Dreyfuss the Academy Award for Best Actor for his performance as Elliot Garfield. The film became the first romantic comedy to earn $100 million in box-office grosses.

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