Once upon a time, in a land far away, director Sam Raimi decided he wanted Tony Sta—sorry, Robert Downey Jr. (easy mistake to make) to play the lead in Oz the Great and Powerful. It didn’t work out, of course. Negotiations fell apart and the role eventually went to James Franco.
But why? There’s a very scandalous reason. Wait for it…
Wait for it…
Raimi gave Downey Jr. a houseplant, and he didn’t water it.
Explains writer Stephen Galloway in The Hollywood Reporter, Raimi and Downey Jr. didn’t quite see eye to eye on the film, so Raimi gave Downey a plant to try and butter him up.
And for the tale’s dramatic conclusion:
Months later, Raimi visited Downey at his Los Angeles home, still attempting to land him, but upon entering the house, Raimi spotted a plant that he had given the actor as a goodwill gesture wilting in a corner. (The filmmaker declines to elaborate.)
I bet you handed him the plant instead of mailing it, didn’t you, Raimi? Curses! You should have known he doesn’t like being handed things!