Only Fools and Horses fan Sir Anthony Hopkins almost took iconic role in the sitcom but had to work on mega film hit instead

Gemma Thomas
Gemma Thomas
2 Min Read

Legendary sitcom almost has Sir Anthony Hopkins play a cockney villain

Sir Anthony Hopkins almost joined ‘Only Fools and Horses’, but his Hannibal Lecter role intervened, claimed John Challis back in 2021. It turns out that Sir Anthony, by the skin of his teeth, missed a golden opportunity to join the Trotter clan in 1989.

John Challis claimed the famed 85-year-old actor nearly played a taller Driscoll brother in the popular sitcom. However, destiny had other plans. Sir Anthony was tied up with ‘Silence of the Lambs’ by a twist of fate. Reminiscing what-could-have-been moment, John told The Mirror, “Imagine those piercing blue eyes sizing up Boycie or Del Boy. It’d have sent shivers down your spine!”

Sir Anthony Hopkins in Silence of the Lambs
Sir Anthony Hopkins couldn’t join the Only Fools and Horses cast due to filming Hannibal Lecter role

Hopkins fortuitously won the Best Actor Oscar for his 1991 portrayal. And as the old saying goes, ‘Every cloud has a silver lining’. Just last month, he celebrated another Oscars win for his stellar performance in ‘The Father’. When quizzed if Sir Anthony might be harbouring any regrets, John cheekily quipped, “He might be clutching his Oscar, musing, ‘If only I had joined the Trotters, I’d be even more of a legend’.”

Anthony Hopkins, a massive fan of Only Fools and Horses would have undoubtedly enjoyed starring in the iconic series. I can envisage him as the taller Driscoll intimidating Del and his mates. However, we can appreciate Roy Marsden’s performance as Danny, albeit a small cameo.

Anthony Hopkins was set to play the part of Danny Driscoll (centre)
The production set Hopkins to play the part of Danny Driscoll (centre)

At last, we will never know how Anthony Hopkins would have played the role of Danny Driscoll, but he did give us one of the best films of that era I guess.

We forgive him.

Share this Article
Leave a comment