/Stanley Tucci Would Never Play This One Role Again

Stanley Tucci Would Never Play This One Role Again

Stanley Tucci, whose acting work includes major blockbusters like “The Hunger Games” and cult classics like “Big Night” and “Margin Call,” revealed one role he would never return to.

“I would not play George Harvey again in ‘The Lovely Bones,’ which was horrible,” Tucci told “Entertainment Tonight” reporter Ash Crossan Tuesday on the red carpet for the London premiere of his Prime Video series “Citadel.” “It’s a wonderful movie, but it was a tough experience. Simply because of the role.”

Based on the 2002 book by Alice Sebold, Peter Jackson’s “The Lovely Bones” centers on a serial killer and child rapist who sexually assaulted and murdered upward of seven girls. As a father of three at the time he was offered the role, Tucci has said he was “resistant.”

“I asked … Jackson why he cast me in that role,” he told ET. “I tried to get out of playing the role, which is crazy because I needed a job. But I was like, ‘Why do you want me?’ And he said, ‘Because you’re funny.’ And I thought, ‘OK.’ But I understand what he was saying.”

“I think what he meant was that I wouldn’t be too — not that I wouldn’t be serious about it, but that I wouldn’t be overly dramatic about it,” he continued. “That I would throw it away a bit. Which is what you have to do when you’re playing somebody who’s awful, right?”

Stanley Tucci said he'd happily return to the worlds of "The Devil Wears Prada" and "Julie and Julia."
Stanley Tucci said he’d happily return to the worlds of “The Devil Wears Prada” and “Julie and Julia.”

Hoda Davaine/Dave Benett/WireImage/Getty Images

Tucci added you “can’t play into it” and turn a character as dark as Harvey into a caricature. Tucci, who once portrayed Adolf Eichmann — one of the top Nazi officials who helped orchestrate the Holocaust — told ABC News in 2009 the goal was “to be bad, but human.”

He only agreed to portray Harvey, however, once Jackson agreed he wouldn’t have to reenact the sexual assaults. While “The Lovely Bones” was critically panned and a box-office flop, the film earned Tucci an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actor.

The newfound CNN travel show host — whose “Searching for Italy” series explores the country’s history and culture through food across two seasons — appears to have no reservations about returning to some of his other characters, however.

“I would happily play Nigel in ‘The Devil Wears Prada’ again,” Tucci told ET. “It was a really great experience. I would play Paul Child again, when we did ‘Julie and Julia.’ Those are really wonderful roles to play.”

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