Earlier this week, we reported that Timothy Olyphant replaced Sharlto Copley in DJ Caruso’s teen sci-fi film I Am Number Four over creative differences related to his character’s look. According to an exclusive report from Film Drunk, Copley wanted his character to look more like an alien, complete with a prosthetic nose and Spock ears. In a recent interview with MTV however, Copley dismissed that report as a rumor, explaining that he left the film strictly because of his busy schedule.
In the MTV interview, Copley says that the scheduling conflict revolved around his publicity responsibilities for The A-Team and that, while the production team worked on ways to accomodate him, he felt it was damaging to the movie to remain involved.
“They were really trying to be as accommodating as possible to even rewrite certain scenes, to write me out of stuff, so it would deal with the schedule. But it just wasn’t working in terms of what was coming together. It was like, ‘Guys, you’re harming the movie and the character’s function in the film to accommodate the schedule’s requirements.’ Obviously, they knew it would be tricky up front, so we were really trying to work that out. We just realized that in the best interest of the film, it wasn’t right for us to try and do it.”
As to the report that he wanted his character to wear Spock ears, Copley laughed off the rumor and said he didn’t know where that story came from.
“I was working on a prosthetic look for the character, but not for an alien look at all, no. He was going to look human. There was no difference of opinion on the physicality, on trying to look like Spock or anything. I love that.”
I find Copley’s quote interesting, because he acknowledges that he was working on prosthetics for the character, but he claims that there were no real creative differences over his character’s look. Could Film Drunk’s report have been an unintentional exaggeration of a non-issue, or is Copley downplaying the incident to protect his reputation?
Whatever the case, the bottom line is that Copley will no longer be in the film and Timothy Olyphant will. Does that fact have any bearing on whether or not you plan on seeing I Am Number Four?