John Wayne: Roles Missed, Rejected–High Noon

Wayne rebuffed the lead role in the 1952 Western film High Noon because he felt the film’s story was an allegory against blacklisting, which he actively supported.

In a 1971 interview, Wayne said he considered High Noon “the most un-American thing I’ve ever seen in my whole life”, and that he would “never regret having helped run screenwriter Carl Foreman, who was later blacklisted, out of the country.”

The part went to Gary Cooper, and earned him his second Best Actor Oscar.