Sometimes, no matter how much they love them, directors have to kill their darlings and cut an actor from a movie. Harrison Ford’s school principal role was cut from E.T., Terrence Malick is famous/notorious for doing this to tons of actors, and now George Clooney’s done it to Josh Brolin in Suburbicon.

Clooney revealed to Entertainment Weekly that, while he loved Brolin’s two scenes he shot for the movie, they completely derailed the tone he was going for.

We shot a couple of scenes with Josh [playing] a baseball coach that are really really funny. But after we did our first screening, the one thing that became really clear to me was that [the scenes] let the air out of the balloon, in terms of the tension in the film. I had to write him this awful note where I just said, ‘You’re not going to believe it. but these scenes really don’t work any more.’ He felt bad, and he thought maybe something went wrong, and I said, ‘I’m sending you the scenes, so you can see, they’re actually the two funniest scenes in the movie.’ I remember sitting there with the editor going, ‘F---! I can’t believe this!’ But I’ve sort of been in the same situation. I did a bunch of scenes in Thin Red Line and then got a call from Terry [Malick], saying, ‘We’re cutting out everything except the very last scene.’ I was like, ‘Please cut me completely out of the movie! Don’t leave me in one scene!’

Disappointing for Brolin and any Brolin fans out there — he’s an enormously funny comedic actor and had one of the best scenes in Inherent Vice. But sometimes these things just need to happen, and Clooney himself said he knows how it feels to be cut from something. Regardless, Brolin is having and continues to have a great couple of years anyway: he’s in the next Avengers movie, the Deadpool sequel, and Only the Brave, about the Granite Mountain Hotshots that fought a giant Arizona wildfire in 2013. He’ll be all right.

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