Carey Mulligan snogged Leo during her ‘Gatsby’ audition, that’s how she got the part

Carey Mulligan covers the June issue of Harper’s Bazaar UK, and these are the newsstand cover and subscriber’s cover. I think I’m alone in hating both covers. And I’m saying that as someone who likes/admires Carey, and I have high hopes that she’s going to be a brilliant Daisy Buchanan. But instead of styling her like Gatsby’s Daisy (which is what Vogue did for the May issue), they did this cotton-candy hair, Grey Gardens look. She looks like a little old lady. Or a ghost!!

The Great Gatsby is almost upon us. The big American premiere will be this Wednesday, and then it’s on to Cannes, where I imagine it will be well-received. From what I remember, Cannes LOVED Moulin Rouge, and this seems to be in the same vein. And you know what I keep thinking about? How Blake Lively auditioned for the role of Daisy Buchanan. OMG. I cannot even believe that Blake got through the door on that one. But would you like to know how Carey got the part? She totally snogged Leonardo DiCaprio in the audition!! ‘Atta girl.

Carey Mulligan bagged a role in Baz Luhrmann’s “The Great Gatsby” by giving Leonardo DiCaprio a surprise kiss during her audition.

The Australian filmmaker recruited leading man DiCaprio to help pick an actress to play Jay Gatsby’s love interest Daisy Buchanan in the upcoming big-screen adaptation of the classic novel, and it was Mulligan’s brave smooch that really impressed DiCaprio.

Luhrmann tells The Hollywood Reporter, “Leonardo was at every audition. He worked with me – it was work. He is not an acting snob but I guess if he was a chef, he can really tell what is fine cuisine. So Carey came in. I’d swapped scenes (to read during the audition) and forgot and (the script said) she kisses him. (Mulligan) grabbed me… and she said, ‘Should I? Should I kiss him?’ I went, ‘Yeah, but don’t tell him!’

“So she does the scene, absolutely fantastic, and grabs him and kisses him. She went out the door and I was just thinking, ‘My God, that is Daisy Buchanan.’

“I thought, ‘I wonder what Di (DiCaprio) thinks’. He said, ‘The way Carey manifests Daisy is like something Gatsby would never have met in his life, something so delicate that he would want to protect to her to an obsessive and almost impossible level.’ And then it was done. It was done.”

[From SF Gate]

Yeah. So that’s how she got the part. She inhabited Daisy. And I honestly think she’s probably a smarter choice for the role than, say, Mia Farrow. I know that’s slander around here, but Mia Farrow sucked as Daisy in the 1970s version. Robert Redford? SURE. He can inhabit Gatsby any day of the week. But Carey will be a fine Daisy.

Photos courtesy of Harper’s Bazaar UK.

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71 Responses to “Carey Mulligan snogged Leo during her ‘Gatsby’ audition, that’s how she got the part”

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  1. Andrea says:

    Not blasphemy to me. The original Redford film is a terrible adaptation of a brilliant book. Robert, himself, was lovely. But it’s not a true adaptation of the book.

    • Chrissy says:


      Every time Mia Farrow did a breathy hysterical laugh I wanted to die.

      • Annie says:

        I’d imagine Blake’s Daisy would have be something like Mia’s, with a lot more Gossip Girl sighing and frowning.
        I’d watch it for the laughs.

    • Agnes says:

      Agreed. Mia Farrow was terrible.

      • boredbrit says:

        This reminds me of how everyone in my English class burst out laughing at her acting when we watched it.

  2. Apples says:

    I think she’s a great actress with a beautiful smile. So curious about this movie!

    • Sade says:

      I love her too, she was in my 2 favourite films of last year ie Drive and Shame. Im so over Leo at this point!

    • Kasia says:

      I agree, she’s extremely talented. I preferred her with darker hair, though, as in “An Education”. Blonde sort of washes her out.

  3. Cam S says:

    So disappointed she will play Daisy. In my opinion she hasn’t the right aura or presence. Can’t get behind this actress in anything she does, not even “Shame”. I have no idea why?

    • Ella says:

      I think she’s a perfect Daisy. She has so much warmth. Mia Farrow was benign and dull.

    • F5 says:

      Because she looks like Tony Curtis in drag in “Some Like It Hot” in this movie.. 😛

    • bridget says:

      If I hadnt seen her in An Education I would be worried too, but I think she has it in her.

  4. GoodCapon says:

    I think she has an adorable face 🙂 I’m a biased Whovian so I’ll always like Carey.

    I’m not too keen on the book but I’ll watch it for Carey and Jason Clarke.

    • berry says:

      Yes I’m biased too. Blink is one of my favourite Who episodes, but I’m not really enjoying the episodes this series.

      • GoodCapon says:

        I’m behind on four episodes (I’m having an Archer phase!) but so far I’m not that keen on the romantic thing going on between the Doctor and Oswin.

      • boredbrit says:

        As a former die hard Doctor Who fan, I stopped watching a while ago. I watched a bit of an episode recently and it was utter rubbish. May tune in for David Tennant’s debut otherwise I’m better off watching QI.

  5. Mia 4S says:

    She’s great, could not care less about this movie. I get why Gatsby is considered a classic but I was over it in a heartbeat.

    Interesting how this time the actress is the right age for the character and the actor (Leo) is a touch too old.

  6. Norman Bates' Mother says:

    I believe in Carey. She is a good, skilled actress and she can pull off selfish and arrogant anytime even if people think she is too sweet and vanilla for Daisy. She already played some not-so-nice characters and she was great. I’m not sure if Luhrmann will pull it off (I wasn’t a fan of his Romeo and Juliet), but even if he won’t, I’ll watch it for Carey. And Leo. And Jason Clarke. But mostly Carey.

  7. Tessa says:

    I love her face. I can see Gatsby falling for her.

  8. 2000 says:

    I think Leo and Carey are a mismatch. I see Carey as a great Daisy but with someone else playing Gatsby. Leo was a good choice to play Gatsby but with someone else playing Daisy. I agree that Leo is a little too old for her and I just don’t see chemistry at all…

  9. Lb says:

    I’m excited to see this. Baz Lurhman is such a unique visionary that sometimes I see his product as wholly independent of the source material (re: his version of Romeo and Juliet). I am interested about his take of The Great Gatsby.

    • oliveo says:

      I feel the same way. GG is one of my favorite books, and I can’t wait to see what Luhrmann does with it. I love how he doesn’t go for definitive, “let’s bring the source to life” adaptations, but for epic, over-the-top interpretations.

      TBH, the only role I’m nervous about is Tobey Maguire as Nick…

    • Tig says:

      I so agree with you re his style of filmmaking- drop dead gorgeous. Even tho picking up way too much Moulin Rouge vibe, I’ll go see it.

      Does anyone remember how old Robert Redford was when he played Gatsby? God, he was so incredible looking.

      Think Bruce Dern played daisy’s hubbie better- Edderington(sp?) looks like he wants to twirl his mustache in the clips I’ve seen!

  10. TG says:

    Can’t wait to see the movie. I don’t like the cover either. Carey looks like Keira Knightley if she were and old lady. They are both beautiful so not sure what happened here. I tried to read another book by Fitzgerald but was so bored I had to put it down. I prefer British authors of the past.

  11. truthful says:


    Blake Lively tried out for the part???

    AS IF, LOL

    she cannot act her way out of a paperbag.

    anther film I am looking forward too, Leo will smash it, can’t wait!

    • fabgrrl says:

      Well, she (Blake) became Leo’s girlfriend shortly before, or during, her audition. So, I imagine she thought she had a good chance.

    • Angie says:

      Haha, yeah I remember when she was trying out for every big roles circa 2010-2011 after the town came out (and when she was Harvey Weistein’s new protégée). Good old times.
      I think she also auditionned for catwoman, silver linning playbook (lol), a role in black swan, the lead in Steven Soderbergh’s side effects Oz the great and powerful in a short period of time. It was funny because she was obviously overraching and her PR team probably kept leaking that she was on the short list for these big roles. And then nothing came out of it…because she can’t act (I think I read somewhere her audition for great gatsby was terrible but she leaked the information that she had a dinner with the director to give the impression she was the frontrunner).

      • HotPockets says:

        From what I remember they were in the process of casting her in Side Effects, but the production company didn’t want her, so they went with Rooney Mara.

      • bridget says:

        I remember too – they tried to make it out like it was between her and Carey for the part. And remember the period before Savages came out, and her team was trying to create all this buzz that she was so amazing in that movie, it would change everyone’s minds about her? And then that didn’t exactly happen? She may not be a great actess but she has some great representation.

  12. siobhan says:

    I really like the first cover. Carey’s Vogue cover was awful.

  13. Faye says:

    I’ll probably get slammed for this, but I really think Blake Lively would have been a good candidate for Daisy. The self-centered, feckless, careless with men to the point of cruel socialite — that’s basically the character of Serena van der Woodsen. When I read the book, I always felt that Daisy would have had sort of a really strong charisma and pull on men, even if she wasn’t an overt man-eater, and I think Blake would have exuded that well (even though I don’t think she is the strongest actress). I really like Carey Mulligan, but somehow feel her personality isn’t suited for Daisy. We’ll see, I guess.

    • Maya says:

      But playing a shallow, careless character does not mean giving a shallow, careless performance, you know? Carey brings more depth, emotion, and inner life to her characters than Blake ever has. Also, I’m pretty sure Carey’s real life personality is very different than that of Sissy in Shame, or Karin in the play Through A Glass Darkly – but she was brilliant in both of those. I think she has that Blanchett-like ability to lose herself in the character.

      And besides, what about the voice?? It has to be “low, thrilling,” with “fluctuating, feverish warmth,” and of course, “full of money.” Blake Lively – please, someone get her some training – does not sound ‘full of money.’ Carey, on the other hand, is an accomplished stage actress with a surprisingly low, warm, and very expressive voice. And her accent sounds great in the trailers.

      So basically, I think Baz made the right choice (and not just because I have what is undeniably a girl crush on Carey). But I guess we’ll find out for sure on May 10th!

      • Faye says:

        Carey is no doubt the better actress, but somehow, I don’t know, I don’t see her in this role. Maybe I just haven’t seen her in something like this so I can’t judge. I’m probably going to see it, though, and I’ll go with an open mind!

      • HotPockets says:

        Blake is ok. I don’t dislike her as much as other people do. I did watch Savages and that movie was crap and I didn’t like her character in it with the first hour being narrated by her monotone voice. I don’t know if the movie just wasn’t watchable or if it was her, but I don’t think her career will take off after that movie.

    • Vickyt says:

      I agree. I think Blake would have been a better choice. I pictured daisy as more siren than sweet.

      • erin says:

        I always thought Sienna Miller- looks wise – would have been a good Daisy. I’ve honestly never seen anything she’s been in, so I can say nothing of her talent… But her look has a little more edge to it – a little more siren a little less baby-fairy, but still so suited for the Gatsby era styling. Regardless, I can’t wait for the movie!

      • boredbrit says:

        Reading these comments has made me realise how everyone’s interpretation of the book is so different. Its quite interesting.

    • EmmaStoneWannabe says:

      I wonder who else auditioned for this role. I can imagine it was one that had several of the A-listers lined up.. Amanda Seyfreid? ScarJo? Kiera Knightly? Maybe even B-actresses like Hayden…Would be interesting to know.

      They need a website listing each project (film, tv & stage) who auditions, whose audition was a flop…lol I would love to read that!

      • Angie says:

        Yeah me too, I would love a website like that!
        I think Amanda Seyfried, Keira, Scarjo were all linked to the Daisy part. The others (rumored): Natalie Portman (pregnant at the time), AnnE hathaway, Michelle Williams and Rebecca Hall (At the end, I think it was between Carey and Rebecca).

      • stellalovejoydiver says:

        According to imdb Amanda Seyfried, Rebecca Hall, Rachel McAdams, Keira Knightley, Blake Lively, Abbie Cornish, Michelle Williams, Natalie Portman, Eva Green, Anne Hathaway, Olivia Wilde, Jessica Alba and Scarlett Johansson were considered to play Daisy Buchanan.

      • EmmaStoneWannabe says:

        @Stella – Do you have IMDBPro or something? I’ll have to look into that. Very interesting. Good for her for beating out all those! Sounds rough.

      • stellalovejoydiver says:

        No, I don´t have imdbpro, but sometimes there are casting infos in the Trivia section of the movie site.

    • Emily says:

      I agree, Blake Lively would have been excellent. Daisy projects an air of being a blank slate, and I don’t think Carey Mulligan can do that. Mia Farrow did a very good job at playing Daisy — this is what she is supposed to seem to be, this pretty nothing. She reveals her true character later in the book; she is cruel, violent, narcissistic. She is exactly like her husband Tom. Nick’s realization of this is quite possibly the most important point of the book.

      • Ms.Smurf says:

        I think she may surprise us…..Carey is a good actress. I’m not familiar with the book, though….what I see from the trailer is this dull, almost lifeless, pampered woman. I don’t know if she portrayed it correctly, but who knows?

        I was extremely skeptical of Leo D. in Django Unchained. Unlike most teenage girls my age (I have a classmate who watches titanic as her “sick day movie), I wasn’t all over Leo…I didn’t really think much of his acting, until I saw him as Calvin Candie…he was amazing.

        Maybe Carey will do the same.

  14. Maya says:

    I LOVE the first cover – she looks soft and luminous and gorgeous. The second cover is also lovely. I can’t wait to see her Daisy! Even if the film is the hot mess the trailers are promising, I don’t doubt her performance will be mesmerizing.

  15. kibbles says:

    I thought Carey looked best in Pride & Prejudice. She had a bit more weight on her and had long hair. She looked so cute. Then she got big in Hollywood and ended up losing a lot of weight and cutting her hair. She’s still pretty but she looks much stranger now than she did before she hit it big, in my opinion.

    • Maya says:

      She was only 18 or 19 in Pride & Prejudice, so maybe it was just baby fat – her face is definitely less round now, though she still has dimples. And I personally think short hair suits her much more than long, which I think makes her look a little mousy.

  16. NM9005 says:

    I have no real feelings towards her. She’s a good actress though and I enjoy her play. I believe her. Part of me thinks it is because I know little about her, she doesn’t need to be ‘famous’. She wants to act.

    I’m glad she’s not very polarising, it helps me focus on her play instead of her personal life.

    Dicaprio is a hard worker and I think he’s a good actor but he’s always so intense like you have to notice he’s seriously acting y’all. He’s not a pretty boy anymore. It’s difficult sometimes to watch his films.I will see this film just because I love Luhrman’s crazy style but I know it won’t be mindboggling great.

  17. Victoria says:

    I do not believe this Baz story. Its a proper fairy tale. Carey has no sex appeal to be a man’s obsession. Wrong choice. So, everyone hated Blake in THE TOWN? Really? Harvey’s at-the-moment muse? Well, we all know what that means. No reason why Harvey doesn’t need to lose some weight. All actresses are on their knees during a meeting with him.

    • Emily says:

      Daisy has no sex appeal. That’s a huge part of her character: that she exudes a don’t-touch-me air. Gatsby does not obsess about Daisy because of Daisy’s character. He obsesses about her because of his own character. Who Daisy actually is, is immaterial to him, which is why she stays with Tom.

  18. Shade says:

    Thank you. I just finally saw the original version a couple of weeks ago and Mia Farrow’s performance was completely uninspiring. I can’t wait to see Carey as Daisy. I think she’ll nail it. Of course it helps that I’m totally in love with her.

  19. BooBooLaRue says:

    Here I go: terrible book though I do like it. Love Carey and this cover. Sorry everyone.

  20. Life in technicolor says:

    Carey Mulligan is completely and utterly wrong for Daisy. She is extremely Irish looking, and that makes her unsuitable for the role.
    Daisy is supposed to be WASP and Gatsby is supposed to be able to pass for WASP (Leo doesn’t by the way) even though he is jewish (hinted in the book).

    The Irish faced a lot of discrimination in America at the time in which The Great Gatsby is set. F. Scott Fitzgerald, having an Irish surname, saw this discrimination and experienced some of it first hand. It’s just a fact: even the Irish-Americans who did have money would ABSOLUTELY NOT BE ACCEPTED in WASP high society, which is where Tom and Daisy reside.
    Even JFK wouldn’t be accepted by the Boston Brahmins until much later.

    The author understood the society of his times. He understood where his characters would belong in that society. The whole crux of the novel is Gatsby not understanding the nature of the barriers of social class. He understands they exist to some extent: that is likely what caused sets his sites on Daisy in the first place . He doesn’t have any appreciation of how impermeable those barriers were. No one who was not an old-money of Anglo Saxon ancestry would be accepted. The lowers, lesser-thans, were okay to have fun with.

    It was okay to go to Gatsby’s parties and drink his champagne. It was okay for Tom to have his fun with Myrtle. Neither was ever going to be part of the club, though. Gatsby was naive to think that money was enough, and that his miscalculation cost him his life. THAT is what The Great Gatsby is about.

    No one as obviously Irish looking as Carey Mulligan would have a chance of acceptance in Tom’s and Daisy’s social circles, so how is she fit to play Daisy? she seems an imposter in the part, like, maybe Daisy’s Irish maid. When I see the previews, I literally expect the real Daisy to show up and snatch her jewels and clothing off her body and fire her on the spot.

    I assume Baz Lurhman is ignorant of all this. There seems to be a great deal about which he is ignorant. I assume we’re supposed to ignore facts and history.
    I can accept that he doesn’t get minor details correct, like the color of Daisy’s hair (brunette), but not something as important as this.

    You have to understand the book is about social injustice, vile prejudice. Much of which Fitzgerald experienced himself.

    • Emily says:


      Luhrman seems to be going at this with the belief that what Gatsby wanted was something good and true. When it was all illusion piled upon filth. This movie is sounding like something Gatsby himself might make. Terrible.

    • lady mary. says:

      WELL SAID! its like iam watching Aviator back again

  21. Emily says:

    The way Carey manifests Daisy is like something Gatsby would never have met in his life, something so delicate that he would want to protect to her to an obsessive and almost impossible level.


    That this is what the director is saying about the film gives me no hope that it will be true to the book. Gatsby was deluded. Daisy was a gigantic jerk, a pretty, narcissistic, rich woman he happened to stumble into upon whom he projected all these false ideas about wealth. She was not “delicate” in the slightest, nor did she need protection. Her true mate was Tom Buchanan — the violent, unfaithful, rude jerkwad. That Gatsby could not recognize that fact was his tragic flaw.

    Oh, and nice one implying non-rich women can’t be “delicate” or need protection there, rich director who loves rich people. The person whom Daisy kills — likely murders — is a working class woman who does need, and does not get, protection. Blech. I’m definitely not going to bother seeing this.

  22. boredbrit says:

    The interview makes it sound like dicaprio said that, or maybe it’s just me. Completely agree with you saying that Daisy was a massive bitch but I think she masqueraded as an innocent, naïve, angelic woman. She was the embodiment of the American Dream in the book and Fitzgerald shows that this dream is flawed by showing her true character.

    • j.eyre says:

      I always felt he scene with Daisy and her child in their apartment was such a powerful statement to her character – I hope it is in this movie. The Robert Redford one left it out completely, didn’t it?

      • boredbrit says:

        Oh, I agree. Our class didn’t like the film much (despite loving the book) we just started taking the piss out of it so our teacher put on Boardwalk Empire instead. So I have no idea.
        I hope that scene is in this movie too.

  23. emma says:

    ugh that top cover is kind of gross. not even pretty, just … i don’t know.

  24. mimi says:

    You guys are so funny discussing it as if there are only 2 actresses in the whole world that could play a part.

    To begin with, neither is right to play opposite Leo as they are too young to make sense.

    I’m sure there are plenty of beautiful, sexy and talented actresses that could have been considered for the role.
    But Hollywood likes to recycle the same names and faces for no reason at all.

    Blake is not very talented, and Cary is not particularly beautiful or sexy, so I would look for someone new.

    • Norman Bates' Mother says:

      In this case, they are not too young but Leo is a little too old for the part. Jay Gatsby was in his early 30’s in the book (or even younger?) and Daisy was 23. Carey could pass for a 23-year old from that era (women looked slightly older because of the styling and make-up), but Leo will be 40 very soon and he looks like he already crossed that line.

  25. taxi says:

    Imo, Carey is as badly miscast as Daisy as she was as Marilyn Monroe.

    There’s something invariably middle-class solid & sensible about her that doesn’t translate as well into iconic roles.

    • Norman Bates' Mother says:

      Carey has never played Marilyn Monroe. It was Michelle Williams.

  26. Hally says:

    I like Carey but I just don’t get her as daisy, especially opposite Leo. In the trailer she looks like a little girl playing dress up. I don’t doubt her acting will be fine, but the look is off. IMO, Kirsten Dunst was born to play daisy. It’s strange she wasn’t mentioned at all during auditions

  27. Sugar says:

    I crushed hard on f Scott. If I had that question asked of me who are 3 people he is a contender on my list.
    I got to see The Great Gatsby in the theater in the 70’s when I was a child I have the DVD & Mia will always be Daisy to me. I get that even the Mia & Robert version was a remake but when I heard that GG was being yet again remade I was against it.

  28. Mazunte says:

    Interesting. Nicolas Refn also said he chose Carey for the role of Irene in Drive because he felt he wanted to protect her, so she was perfect.

  29. Shy says:

    I don’t really like Carey Mulligan as actress. She may be good person but she is so boring on screen. And she always looks the same. She is sad, depressed and miserable all the time.

    And she looks like Carey Mulligan in Great Gatsby trailers. I don’t see character. I see Carey again.