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‘Baby Reindeer’ nearly cast Melissa McCarthy as Martha before Jessica Gunning

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Melissa McCarthy was reportedly a favourite to play the role of Martha in Baby Reindeer.The hit Netflix series, created by and starring Richard Gadd, tells the story of a struggling comedian/barman who is relentlessly stalked by an older woman named Martha.

At the start of the first episode, a disclaimer shows that it is a “true story”, and one which is based on Gadd’s own experiences.According to Variety, a source claimed that Gadd’s CAA agents “pushed aggressively” for the US actor Melissa McCarthy to play the role of Martha.The Variety report reads: “A knowledgeable source says McCarthy met Gadd about the role but ultimately wasn’t interested.“Those familiar with the production say Gadd micromanaged casting and fired his CAA agents after they and Netflix pushed aggressively for Melissa McCarthy to be cast as Martha.”Gadd has spoken several times in interviews about how he “always wanted” British actor Jessica Gunning to play the role.

Speaking with Vanity Fair after the show’s release, Gadd said: “I’d always seen Jess in shows and thought she was criminally underutilised — always playing the comic relief character.

There was an essence of something there that I could tell was bursting to get out.”He continued: “I fought for her against the tide, but then one day she just came in and knocked everyone away.”In a recent video published by Variety, Gadd said: “We saw amazing actresses for it, like the best actresses in Britain, for the role.

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