HELEN MIRREN Turned down: "Blue Velvet" (1986) What happened: "Helen Mirren really helped me on that script," said director David Lynch. But she eventually left the part of a sadomasochistic lounge singer to Isabella Rossellini. (Not that the film was too edgy for Mirren—in 1979, she co-starred in "Caligula," which she called "an irresistible mix of art and genitals.") Also rejected: The Mariah Carey role in "Precious."
Helen Mirren - 1979 With her untamed mane of curls and kohl liner, Mirren played sexually charged roles in Hussy and the controversial Caligula. "It was like being well paid to visit a nudist colony," she once joked.