Rachel McAdams Turned Down 'The Devil Wears Prada' Role 3 Times

Alternative casting for a blockbuster movie? Groundbreaking. The Devil Wears Prada was almost a very different movie. The 2006 hit starred Meryl Streep as cutthroat fashion magazine editor Miranda Priestly and Anne Hathaway as her hard working assistant Andy Sachs. 

But Hathaway definitely wasn’t the first choice for the part. In a new oral history of the film in honor of the 15th anniversary, the cast, director David Frankel, and more speak out about how the beloved film came together. 

“We offered it to Rachel McAdams three times,” director Frankel tells Entertainment Weekly of the Andy Sachs role. “The studio was determined to have her, and she was determined not to do it.”

Other actresses considered included Scarlett Johansson, Natalie Portman, Kate Hudson, and Kirsten Dunst. Earlier this year, Hathaway revealed that she was the “ninth choice” for the part.

Though The Notebook star was not interested in playing the fashion newcomer, Hathaway admits she was desperate for the role. 

“It spoke to me. It made me feel. It was about a subject that I take very seriously, but in such a wonderfully joyful and lighthearted way,” Hathaway shares. 

The former Fox 2000 president, Elizabeth Gabler, notes that Hathaway “never stopped campaigning” for the part. 

“She came into [Fox executive] Carla Hacken’s office and wrote in her zen garden, ‘Hire me,'” Gabler recalls. 

Newly Unearthed 'Devil Wears Prada' Deleted Scene Will Totally Change How You See the Movie — Watch

Newly Unearthed 'Devil Wears Prada' Deleted Scene Will Totally Change How You See the Movie — Watch

“I patiently waited until it was my turn, and I got the call. It was the easiest yes in the world,” Hathaway says. “I remember the moment I found out I got the part, I just ran screaming through my apartment. I had a bunch of friends over at the time, I just jumped up in the living room and screamed, ‘I’m going to be in The Devil Wears Prada!'”

One controversial character in the film is Andy’s boyfriend, Nate, played by Adrian Grenier. The chef consistently gives Andy a hard time for working overtime and eventually makes her choose between her job and her relationship with him. 

“When that whole thing [about Nate being the ‘real villain’ of the film] first came out, I couldn’t get my head around it,” Grenier admits. “I didn’t understand it. Perhaps it was because I wasn’t mature as a man, just as Nate probably could’ve used a little growing up.” 

The Entourage actor adds that he’s since come around to fans’ way of thinking regarding his character. 

“I was just as immature as him at the time, so I couldn’t see his shortcomings, but, after taking time to reflect and much deliberation online, I can realize the truth in that perspective,” he shares. “Nate hadn’t grown up, but Andy had… she needed more out of life, and she was achieving it. He couldn’t support her like she needed because he was a fragile, wounded boy…. on behalf of all the Nates out there: Come on! Step it up!”

The film also struggled to get designers involved due to the fear of Vogue editor Anna Wintour. The book from which the film was adapted was based off author Lauren Weisberger’s experiences working for Wintour at Vogue. But ultimately, the fashion icon took the film in stride. 

“Anna came to the first screening in New York,” screenwriter Aline Brosh McKenna recalls. “She sat right in front of me and David [Frankel] with her daughter and wore Prada, which shows she has a great sense of humor!”

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