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Call Me by Your Name Screenwriter Says a Former Disney Star Was Almost Cast As Oliver

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Call Me by Your Name was one casting choice away from looking a whole lot different...

In an excerpt published in GQ from his upcoming memoir Solid Ivory, filmmaker James Ivory (who won the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay in 2018 after writing the script for the beloved (and controversial) queer, coming-of-age, romance film) opens up about how former Disney Channel star Shia LaBeouf actually read for the part of Oliver opposite Timothée Chalamet's Elio — and how he was almost cast in the role. 

"Shia came to read for us in New York with Timothée Chalamet, paying for his own plane ticket, and [director Luca Guadagnino] and I had been blown away," Ivory wrote in his memoir. "The reading by the two young actors had been sensational; they made a very convincing hot couple."

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Though LaBeouf and Chalamet's reading went well, and as convincing as they were as a "hot couple," LaBeouf's name continuously ending up in headlines for all the wrong reasons, including abuse against his former girlfriend and musician FKA Twigs, turned him off to the CMBYN team, and he ended up being dropped altogether from consideration for the production.

"He’d fought with his girlfriend; he’d fended off the police somewhere when they had tried to calm him down," Ivory recalled. "Luca would not call him, or his agent. I emailed Shia to offer reassurance, but then Luca cast Armie Hammer and never spoke to, or of, Shia again."

The role of Oliver ultimately ended up going to Armie Hammer, and though a CMBYN sequel was reportedly in the earlier stages of being plannedafter sexual abuse and cannibalism allegations against Hammer came to the light earlier this year, it looks like all talks of that ever happening have been scrapped.

Call Me by Your Name is currently streaming on Hulu.

RELATED | Call Me by Your Name Writer Teases Oliver and Elio’s Sequel Romance

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