Why George Clooney Cut Josh Brolin from ‘Suburbicon’

Josh Brolin had a role in George Clooney’s next directorial effort, Suburbicon

Sometimes it’s not until you’ve played your film to an audience that you realise certain scenes just aren’t working. That’s what Clooney says happened during the first test screening of Suburbicon, the dark Matt Damon-starring comedy-drama that he directed from a script he co-wrote with the Coen brothers. Basically, Brolin nailed his “very funny” scenes, but these moments ended up messing with the film’s tone when they played.

“We shot a couple of scenes with Josh [playing] a baseball coach that are really, really funny,” Clooney told EW. “But after we did our first screening, the one thing that became really clear to me was that [the scenes] let the air out of the balloon, in terms of the tension in the film. […] I remember sitting there with the editor going, ‘F—ck! I can’t believe this!’”‘

And so the scissors were pulled out. As you’d expect, being told your part has been excised from the film could be cause for some concern.

“[Brolin] felt bad, and he thought maybe something went wrong, and I said, ‘I’m sending you the scenes, so you can see, they’re actually the two funniest scenes in the movie.”

It’s the nature of the beast really. Even Clooney cites an example of when he was almost completely cut from a hugely acclaimed war film.

“I did a bunch of scenes in Thin Red Line and then got a call from Terry [Malick, director], saying, ‘We’re cutting out everything except the very last scene.’ I was like, ‘Please cut me completely out of the movie! Don’t leave me in one scene!’”

Well, Brolin needn’t worry too much, seeing as he has plenty of other work that will be hitting cinemas in the next year. On the horizon for the Oscar-nominated actor are Only the Brave, Avengers: Infinity War, Deadpool 2, The Legacy of a Whitetail Deer Hunter, and Sicario sequel Soldado.

Surburbicon, also starring Julianne Moore and Oscar Isaac, will be hitting U.S. cinemas on October 27 and arrives in Australia on November 2. Watch the trailer right HERE.