After an exhaustive five-month search to find the right man to play the sprog of Bruno Willis, last week Aussie actor Jai Courtney (“Spartacus”) was cast as ‘Jack’ McClane in Fox and John Moore’s “Good Day to Die Hard”. But according to The Hollywood Reporter, Courtney wasn’t Willis’s first choice for the role of the young McClane. Nope, the star of the cash-cow “Die Hard” series was gunning for actor D.J Cotrona to play the part.
Willis had suggested Cotrona after working with him on the upcoming “G.I Joe : Retaliation” (you might also recognize Cotrona’s name from another project – albeit one that never happened, he was due to play Superman in George Miller’s ill-fated “Justice League” project) but the studio, nixing “Expendables 2” star Liam Hemsworth for the same reason, didn’t want to cast an actor who already has a film with Willis coming out. So both Cotrona and Hemsworth missed out on the lucrative gig.
Fox decided – though after a last-minute casting scout in Australia (that’s where all the good up-and-coming action heroes are hiding, of course) – to offer Courtney the part. And though he was attached to Stuart Beattie’s “I, Frankenstein”, which was due to film at the same time, Fox made a deal with Producer Lakeshore Entertainment that led to the latter scheduling Courtney around his “Die Hard” commitments.
So there you have it, if Willis had had his way – this guy would’ve been John McClane’s boy :