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Ben Hur (1959)
 Who was considered for Ben Hur?

Kirk Douglas
Kirk Douglas wanted the role of Ben Hur, but it was given to Charlton Heston. Douglas was offered the role of Mesala, but he turned it down. Stephen Boyd took it instead.
Actor who got the part: Charlton Heston

Dolores Hart
According to the Chicago Tribune Hart was tested for the role of Esther.
Actor who got the part: Haya Harareet

Rock Hudson
Hudson was set to play Judah Ben Hur, but contract negotiations broke down, and Hudson had to refuse. Charlton Heston stepped into the lead role as a result. Hudson later said it was his only career regret.
Actor who got the part: Charlton Heston

Burt Lancaster
Burt Lancaster turned down the part of Judah Ben-Hur played by Charlton Heston.
Actor who got the part: Charlton Heston

Leslie Nielsen
Leslie Nielsen made at least two screen tests as Messala.
Actor who got the part: Stephen Boyd

Susan Strasberg
According to the Chicago Tribune Strasberg was one of the starlets considered for the role of Esther.
Actor who got the part: Haya Harareet



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