Evan Peters was meant to be eating pasta in 2022.
The “Dahmer” star won the Golden Globe for his controversial portrayal of cannibal serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer in the Netflix series, but “The White Lotus” executive producer David Bernad revealed Peters was set to jet off to Sicily for Season 2 of the HBO viral show. Peters was eyed to play Ethan, the tech millionaire who is married to Aubrey Plaza.
“That part was the last part we cast in the season, and originally it was supposed to be Evan Peters, but for whatever reason – scheduling or timing – it didn’t work out,” Bernad said (via Deadline).
“Giri/Haji” actor Will Sharpe was instead cast.
“We were really trying to figure how to cast that part so it didn’t feel like familiar casting,” Bernad said. “We were in Rome auditioning Italian actors, and I was jet-lagged Googling at 4 a.m. and I came across Will Sharpe in ‘Giri/Haji,’ which is a brilliant show in the U.K. I’d never seen him before and he was just incredibly talented. I looked at his other work and realized he was kind of a chameleon.”
Sharpe earlier spoke to IndieWire about the role, which found Ethan careening from docile, diplomatic husband to raging, jealous avenger of infidelity. “[Creator] Mike [White] wanted him to be a bit of an enigma, and for audiences to sort of be able to guess one way or another about him,” Sharpe said. “[White] wanted people to be able to imagine Ethan might end up killing someone. I was mindful of that in the playing of him through the series, whilst also trying to [get to] the truth in each moment and having an eye on the long game.”
Peters isn’t the only Netflix star who was supposed to be cast in another viral show. Jenna Ortega was originally written into “You” Season 4, reprising her Season 2 character of Ellie Alves, before “Wednesday” production got in the way.
“We wanted to bring Ellie back and we heard, ‘Oh, Jenna is doing some show,’” “You” showrunner Sera Gamble told IndieWire. “It’s been just such a pleasure to see Jenna this year. We have ideas for Ellie if her schedule allows her to visit us again.”