Quentin Tarantino says Tom Cruise nearly played Brad Pitt's role in 'Once Upon a Time in Hollywood'

While Brad Pitt and Leonardo DiCaprio are one of the hottest on-screen duos of the year in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, director Quentin Tarantino recently revealed that another major A-lister was approached to star.

Sitting down with Josh Horowitz on his Happy Sad Confused podcast, the filmmaker admitted that, at one point, he reached out to Tom Cruise to play the role of stuntman Cliff Booth, which eventually went to Pitt.

"We talked about it," Tarantino shared. "We he's a great guy, and we really hit it off."

The Pulp Fiction director said that, while he went in a different direction for this project, working with Cruise is still a possibility, adding, "It could happen on something else."

Ultimately, Tarantino admitted that he lucked out in a big way when he managed to get DiCaprio and Pitt -- two actors he's worked with in the past, but on separate projects -- to star in this film together.

"The reality of it was, people ask, 'Was it always these two guys?' And I'm like, 'Well, it's the casting coup of the decade,'" Tarantino reflected. "You can't count on that. They both have to respond to it, they both have to want to play they roles, they have to be available. There's a whole lot of stuff there."

In the film, DiCaprio plays a fading movie star named Rick Dalton, while Pitt plays his close friend and stunt double. For the casting to work, Tarantino explained, he needed two stars who made sense, physically, playing an actor and his double.

"The reality is, I had maybe eight different pairings of actors that could go together in a realistic way in this situation," Tarantino shared. "Now, the ones that I got were definitely my No. 1s."

ET's Keltie Knight spoke with the famed filmmaker at the star-studded Los Angeles premiere of Once Upon a Time In Hollywood on Monday, and he opened up about working with the pair of Oscar winners.

"It's like lassoing a couple of wild stallions!" Tarantino marveled. "They are such terrific actors and such great movie stars!"

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Once Upon a Time in Hollywood premiere
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Leonardo DiCaprio arrives at the premiere of Sony Pictures' "One Upon A Time...In Hollywood" at the Chinese Theatre on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Brad Pitt arrives at the premiere of Sony Pictures' "One Upon A Time...In Hollywood" at the Chinese Theatre on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Margot Robbie attends Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Margot Robbie attends Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: (L-R) Brad Pitt, Margot Robbie and Leonardo DiCaprio arrive at the premiere of Sony Pictures' "One Upon A Time...In Hollywood" at the Chinese Theatre on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Pierce Brosnan and Dylan Brosnan attends Sony Pictures' "Once Upon A Time...In Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Pierce Brosnan and Dylan Brosnan attend Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Dylan Brosnan attends Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)

HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Elsa Pataky and Chris Hemsworth attend Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California.

Elsa wore a Ba&sh dress, currently on sale for 50% off!

(Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)

HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Julia Butter (L) and Leonardo DiCaprio arrive at the premiere of Sony Pictures' "One Upon A Time...In Hollywood" at the Chinese Theatre on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Quentin Tarantino arrives at the premiere of Sony Pictures' "One Upon A Time...In Hollywood" at the Chinese Theatre on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Snoop Dogg attends Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Britney Spears and Sam Asghari attend Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Robert Carradine arrives at the Sony Pictures' "Once Upon A Time...In Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Timothy Olyphant attends Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Joe Manganiello and Sofia Vergara attend Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Sofia Vergara attends Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Luke Hemsworth and Samantha Hemsworth attend Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: (L-R) Scout Larue Willis, Tallulah Belle Willis and Rumer Willis arrive at the premiere of Sony Pictures' "One Upon A Time...In Hollywood" at the Chinese Theatre on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Vanessa Hudgens and Austin Butler attend Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: John Stamos and Caitlin McHugh attend Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Adriana Lima attends Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Andy Serkis attends Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Maya Hawke attends Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Rebecca Gayheart attends Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Topher Grace attends The Los Angeles Premiere Of "Once Upon A Time In Hollywood" at TCL Chinese Theatre on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by David Crotty/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: April Love Geary and Robin Thicke attend The Los Angeles Premiere Of "Once Upon A Time In Hollywood" at TCL Chinese Theatre on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by David Crotty/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Rebecca Rittenhouse attends The Los Angeles Premiere Of "Once Upon A Time In Hollywood" at TCL Chinese Theatre on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by David Crotty/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Margaret Qualley attends Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Kevin Smith and Jennifer Schwalbach Smith arrives at the Sony Pictures' "Once Upon A Time...In Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Travis Scott attends Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" Los Angeles Premiere on July 22, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
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