Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins secretly helped the filmmakers behind All The Money in the World replace Kevin Spacey after the actor was removed from the Ridley Scott-directed film as result of a wave of sexual misconduct allegations made against the two-time Academy Award winner.
The decision to erase Spacey from the project came in early November — just over a month before the film's approaching December release date. Spacey portrayed mogul J. Paul Getty, a central figure, and producers needed to recast — quickly.
All The Money in the World screenwriter David Scarpa said producers wanted to keep the move a secret — "'If it gets out, and we don't cast this and we can't make it happen, the movie is dead,'" Scarpa recalled producers telling him in November — making it difficult to properly seek out and cast a replacement.
"When a call goes out to the casting agencies, 'Ridley Scott is looking for an actor to play a 90-year-old guy,' pretty much everybody knows what movie that is," Scarpa added.
The screenwriter revealed it was Wonder Woman helmer Patty Jenkins who saved the day, who sent out the casting call under the guise of One Day She'll Darken — Jenkins' in-the-works TNT limited drama series crafted alongside her husband Sam Sheridan.
"Ridley's casting agents basically asked if they could send the call out for the part under their production's name," Scarpa explained. "So basically it was, 'Patty Jenkins is looking for a 90-year-old guy.' That was basically how they were able to do it. There was a lot of this sort of … crafty maneuvers in order to make this thing come off."
Spacey was replaced by Academy Award winner Christopher Plummer, who garnered a Golden Globe nomination for the role. Co-star Michelle Williams earned a nomination in the Best Actress (Drama) category and director Scott is up for Best Director.
"You can't tolerate any kind of behavior like that," Scott said of Spacey's behavior and removal. "And it will affect the film. We cannot let one person's action affect the good work of all these other people. It's that simple."
All The Money in the World opens Christmas Day. Jenkins' next big screen outing will be the Wonder Woman sequel, opening November 1, 2019.