Zack Snyder says Tom Cruise wanted to play this surprising Watchmen character

(Image credit: DC)

Zack Snyder says Tom Cruise wanted to play a pretty surprising character in his 2009 comic book movie Watchmen.

"I wanted Tom Cruise for Ozymandias. Tom wanted to play Rorschach," Snyder told the Happy Sad and Confused podcast. "Which he obviously could have done, but we already had [Jackie Earle Haley] and Jackie is unbelievable. But I certainly would have considered Tom in retrospect if I hadn't had Jackie."

Watchmen, based on the DC Comics limited series of the same name, hit theaters in 2009. Snyder directed the dark and dystopian superhero pic from a screenplay by David Hayer (Warrior Nun) and Alex Tse (Gran Turismo). 

Walter Kovacs aka Rorschach is a vigilante who styles himself like an old-timey detective and dons a mask with shifting black and white patterns that resemble the ink blots on a Rorschach test. Haley's audition was shot in the living room and kitchen areas of Haley's house, with the actor wearing a makeshift Rorschach outfit that he put together himself. 

The part of Adrian Veidt aka Ozymandias, a retired superhero with genius-level intellect and peak human strength, went to Matthew Goode. To this day, Cruise has yet to star in a superhero movie.

The film ultimately underperformed at the box office, grossing only $187 million against a budget of $150 million, but subsequently gained a cult following. Watchmen also, of course, has a Snyder Cut consisting of 24 minutes of additional footage.

Watchmen is streaming now on Max. For more, check out our list of the most exciting upcoming movies in 2024 and beyond, or, skip straight to the good stuff with our complete list of movie release dates.

Lauren Milici
Senior Writer, Tv & Film

Lauren Milici is a Senior Entertainment Writer for GamesRadar+ currently based in the Midwest. She previously reported on breaking news for The Independent's Indy100 and created TV and film listicles for Ranker. Her work has been published in Fandom, Nerdist, Paste Magazine, Vulture, PopSugar, Fangoria, and more.