How Steven Spielberg Cast Roy Scheider in ‘Jaws’

“But I was at a party at Andre Eastman’s house and I met Roy Scheider for the first time. He walked over to me and I was literally sitting on a couch with a Coca-Cola in my hand fretting over Jaws, that I wasn’t able to get this shark movie cast, and Roy sat down and introduced himself. Of course, I had loved him so much in The French Connection and then in The Seven Ups. Roy actually said to me, “You have such a glum look on your face. What’s the matter?” I said, “Aw, I’m having trouble casting my picture.” He actually said, “Who have you gone out to?” I named a few names and looked at me and said, “What about me?!?” He actually said, “What about ME?!?” in only the way Roy could do that, with his voice kind of cracking the way it does when he hits that high note. I looked at him and said, “You’re right! What about you? Will you make my movie?” Without even asking for a script he said, “Of course! If you want me, I’ll do it!” And we actually agreed at a party that he would play Brody… that night… at Andre Eastman’s house. And then he read the script and loved it, which was good because he could have read the script and thrown it back in my face. But he loved it.”

Steven Spielberg, interviewed by Ain’t It Cool News

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