6. Tom Hanks: Jerry Maguire, 'Jerry Maguire'

He might have known to say yes to ‘Forrest Gump’, but two years later Hanks wasn't so insightful, passing on the lead in 'Jerry Magurie', a role which had been written with him in mind. Director Cameron Crowe thought of Hanks when he was writing the script but Hanks, who was currently directing ‘That Thing You Do’, passed on the project. The Oscar winner has no regrets with his decision, however, saying"I think you look at it now and it couldn't have been anybody other than Tom Cruise."

Tom HanksTom Hanks said yes to 'Forrest Gump', but it was a no for 'Jerry Maguire'

7. Mel Gibson: Maximus Decimus Meridius, 'Gladiator'

Could Mel Gibson have donned the 'Gladiator' costume and successfully portrayed Maximus Meridius? Well someone thought so, as Gibson was originally offered the part. ‘Braveheart’ decided that he was just now too old to take the lead in ‘Gladiator’ and instead the part went to Russell Crowe. The Australian actor subsequently became a household name thanks to the film and earned an Academy Award for best actor.

8. Sean Connery: Gandalf, ‘Lord of the Rings’

Peter Jackson offered Sean Connery the role of Gandalf in ‘Lord of the Rings’ as well as an apparent $6 million per movie pay check which would have meant a guaranteed yes for some actors. Not a bad offer, but Connery turned it down. The reason being, Connery apparently just didn't understand the script and what's more he hadn't understood the books either.

9. Liam Neeson, James Bond, ‘Goldeneye

Of course Sean Connery had already made his name playing James Bond, but many actors have turned down the role at various times. Most recently Liam Neeson revealed that he was nearly 007 saying, "I was heavily courted, let’s put it that way, and I’m sure some other actors were too." But Neeson decided to pass on the role at the instance of his wife, Natasha Richardson. He admitted, "my wife-to-be said, 'If you play James Bond we’re not getting married'. And I had to take that on board because I did want to marry her."

Al PacinoAl Pacino could have been Hans Solo

10. Al Pacino: Han Solo, 'Star Wars'

It might be hard to imagine Tony Montana as Han Solo, but it very nearly happened. Pacino was first offered the role and turned it down because he didn't understand it. He told the audience of ‘An Evening with Al Pacino' last year, "...it was mine for the taking but I didn’t understand the script." Pacino probably doesn't have many regrets over passing on a part in the long running franchise, in the same interview he referred to working on' The Godfather' trilogy as "a long, awful, tiring story."

More: Liam Neeson and 10 other actors who rejected James Bond role.

More: The 5 actors battling for the lead in 'Star Wars' Episode 7.