Bill Murray’s Zombieland Role Was Meant For Patrick Swayze

We all recall Bill Murray’s epic cameo in horror-comedy ‘Zombieland’, but apparently the role wasn’t even intended for him.


During an interview on Geeking Out, an AMC show hosted by Kevin Smith, ‘Zombieland’ writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick talk about the cult movie as they make the stark revelation that legendary actor Bill Murray wasn’t meant to be in the movie - instead it was thought that the late Patrick Swayze would fill the cameo role.

However, when Swayze’s health deteriorated and was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer - the illness he sadly died from - the film-makers began to consider other actor they could approach.

Surprisingly Murray wasn’t even second or third choice, with the director considering around a dozen other names for the part before residing to the ‘Ghostbusters’ and ‘Groundhog Day’ star.

The likes of Jean-Claude Van Damme were allegedly approached and all of them turned it down, so they asked one of the film’s stars Woody Harrelson for ideas. He suggested Murray and, well, the rest is history.

It’s a shame that Swayze couldn’t appear for obviously reasons because he would’ve been awesome. That said, it’s hard to imagine anyone else doing the role after Murray stamped his authority on it. When you think about ‘Zombieland’, you tend to think of that memorable cameo, and can’t imagine Van Damme would’ve had quite the same impact.

Watch the interview here but currently isn’t available to UK residents.

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Picture credit: Columbia Pictures