Jim Carrey Wanted Nicolas Cage For Dumb And Dumber, But He Chose Leaving Las Vegas

The pages of Hollywood history are littered with interesting stories of things that could have been. One such fascinating bit of history was just uncovered by Nicolas Cage in a very casual manner, as the actor confirmed he was being eyed to co-star alongside Jim Carrey in the hit comedy "Dumb & Dumber."

Cage made the big reveal while speaking to GQ, responding to various queries from fans on the internet. Someone had posted online suggesting that Gary Oldman and Cage were supposedly the original actors considered for the roles of Harry and Lloyd. Cage then responded by suggesting this was, in some way, a half-truth. While he was surprised to hear about the Oldman rumor, Cage did say the following:

"I know Jim [Carrey] wanted me to be in [Dumb & Dumber] with him, but I wanted to do a little movie called Leaving Las Vegas instead."

So yeah, that is a pretty fascinating tidbit. Cage taking the place of Jeff Daniels would have undoubtedly altered one of the biggest comedies of the '90s in a huge way, not to mention the trajectory of Cage's career.

Everything panned out

"Dumb & Dumber" was released in 1994 and became an absolutely gigantic hit, earning $246 million at the global box office. It helped to cement Carrey as a big star and gave Daniels a big leg-up in Hollywood. It is truly difficult to imagine the movie any other way being that we all know it as it exists now. The dynamic between Carrey and Daniels is in large part what makes the movie work. Cage would have undoubtedly changed that dramatically.

On the flip side, Cage opted to do "Leaving Las Vegas" instead, which hit theaters in 1995. While it wasn't as big of a hit commercially, it remains one of his best-reviewed movies to date and ultimately netted him a Best Actor Oscar. Had Cage managed to be swayed by Carrey, his career might have panned out very differently. All things considered, it seems everything worked out for the best for everyone involved.

Cage went on to have a huge career in the '90s, starring in a bunch of action flicks like "Face/Off" and "Con Air." The man has stayed exceedingly busy, even if a good chunk of that time was spent doing direct-to-video movies to pay off debt. Yet, Cage says that he never phoned it in, even if not all of those movies worked out overall.

Of late, he's been having something of a career renaissance, with movies like "Mandy" and last year's "Pig" earning him some of the best reviews of his career. He's also got "The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent" on the way this year, and is currently filming "Renfield," a movie that will see him playing Dracula. Maybe none of this happens if he stars in a huge hit comedy alongside Carrey. This timeline seems like the one best suited for Cage.