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Why no-one wanted to play Noah in The Notebook

Enter Ryan Gosling to save the day and break a million hearts in the process. 

Clarisse Loughrey
Monday 08 February 2016 11:06 GMT
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Ryan Gosling broke through into the public consciousness with his swoon-worthy role as The Notebook's Noah in 2004; taking one of Nicholas Sparks' excessively romantic heroes to screen with all the charisma and commitment he'd later be known for.

A true trick of destiny, as it turns out. No one outside of Gosling could, or wanted to, take on the part in the first place. Sparks, who originally penned The Notebook before its big screen adaption, recently took to an IMDB Asks session to promote his latest work to hit the screens, The Choice.

During which, Sparks revealed the role of Noah garnered little interest from approached actors. "No one wanted to play Noah," he joked. "It was really interesting because a lot of the actors said, ‘Well, what’s Noah’s arc?' It’s a guy who falls in love and then he just kinda does nothing, and then waits for her to show up and then he’s there and he’s still in love and then at the end of the film, well, he’s still in love. Where’s the arc?"

"Ryan Gosling came in and he really brought that story to life," though he declined to elaborate on which actors may have turned down the role. The lack of interest seems to have actually been what paved the way for Gosling's entrance, a relative unknown who was deemed a huge risk at the time of casting (if only they knew). The actor has shared in the past that director Nick Cassavetes primed him for the role because, as he told Company in 2012, "'You’re not handsome, you’re not cool, you’re just a regular guy who looks a bit nuts.'"


Admittedly, it's a little weird for the guy who wrote the character of Noah to admit the character of Noah wasn't very well written. Thank goodness for Gosling, then; the actor's impassioned performance went a long way to ensuring the film's entry in the annals of modern romance.

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