15 Potential Simpsons Cameos That Didn’t Become Reality

The Simpsons have featured so many guest stars over its 700-episode (!) run that it’s hard to imagine anyone ever said no. But here are 15 stars who decided to take a pass on animated posterity.

15

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN keeps saying no Remember when Sting dug Bart out of the well? Written for the Boss. Staff tried to bribe him with a Simpsons jacket. Still no. Matt Groening tried for The Simpsons Movie. We keep asking him and he keeps turning us down!

Looper

14

TOM CRUISE would have been Bart's best pal OL Someone told producers that Cruise wanted to guest, so they wrote the part of Bart's amazing Bigger Brother Tom just for him. Cruise rejected the part, which was ably handled by do-it-all Phil Hartman.

DVD commentary, The Simpsons: The Complete Fourth Season

13

O.J. SiMPSON was asked to guest before, well, you know CRACKED.COM Producers wanted The Juice for a guest spot on Smartline, a part that ultimately went to Dr. Joyce Brothers. Given the subsequent Bronco chases, no one on The Simpsons staff regretted losing the cameo.

DVD commentary, The Simpsons: The Complete Fourth Season

12

QUENTIN TARANTINO gave a yes-and-no response Yes: Tarantino agreed to his likeness being used for an Itchy and Scratchy Reservoir Dogs takeoff. No: He wouldn't voice his cartoon likeness because he didn't want to say what [producers] have him saying.

The Things

11

PRINCE knew a guy with a script Writers planned a follow-up to the episode featuring Leon Kompowsky, famously voiced by Michael Jackson. Prince agreed to guest, but only if the show used a different script written by a personal pal. The producers passed.

Rolling Stone

10

RICHARDSIMMONS longed to be human Simmons was down for a guest spot until he learned producers wanted him to play a robot Richard Simmons. The scene was cut and the Sweatin' With the Oldies star never got to visit Springfield.

DVD commentary, The Simpsons: The Complete Fifth Season

9

Producers struck out with ML HALL OF FAMERS C CRAGKEDCOM Homer at the Bat'' is enshrined in the Baseball Hall of Fame. But some members of its all-star cast were fill-in players. Director Bonnie Pietila was turned down by all-timers Ryne Sandberg, Carlton Fisk, Nolan Ryan, and Rickey Henderson.

The Ringer

8

JAMESEARL JONES was almost Sideshow Bob CRACKED COM Show runners originally wrote the role of Sideshow Bob for Jones. Though the famous voice guested several other times, he was unable to make the Bob commitment. That opened the door for what Kelsey Grammar calls his best role ever.

The Things

7

GEORGE TAKEI didn't want to insult legit transport CRACKED C Conan O'Brien wrote Marge VS. the Monorail with Takei in mind for the grand marshal. (Leonard Nimoy nailed it as Takei's replacement.) Takei, a member of the San Francisco Transportation Board, didn't want to mock monorails.

Looper

6

HOWARD STERN got Rude When Stern turned down the chance to appear on the show, producers invented the Sternesque radio program Jerry Rude and the Bathroom Bunch. An interview with Mr. Burns was followed by lesbian gladiators.

DVD commentary, The Simpsons: The Complete Tenth Season

5

JIMCARREY let work get in the way CRACKEDCO Carrey agreed to provide the voice of a singing hobo who tells three tall tales. But the appearance was doomed by that arch-nemesis of producers everywhere: Scheduling conflicts.

WhatCulture

4

EXPRESIDENTS took a hard pass ORACKEDCOM Not only did Ford, Carter, and Reagan not appear on the show, two of them ghosted the producers. Only Reagan had the courtesy to formally reject the cameo offer.

DVD commentary, The Simpsons: The Complete Fourth Season 

3

DON RICKLES didn't want to be a mean guy CRACKED CON The script called for Homer to disrupt Rickles' comedy act, leading to a fight that ends up in court. Rickles, notorious for carving up his audience, hated the script because he wanted to be known as a sweetheart.

WhatCulture

2

DAVID BOWIe was recruited to be English CRACKED British celebrities were needed for The Regina Monologues episode, but the Thin White Duke couldn't find time in his busy schedule. Luckily, Prime Minister Tony Blair had some open dates on his calendar.

CNN

1

808 DYLAN was a two-time nix U The Voice of Protest turned down a chance to go electric at Homerpalooza. Undaunted, producers tried to cast him in The Mysterious Voyage of Homer episode. When he said no a second time, Johnny Cash got the gig.

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