Entertainment Arts How Lindsay Lohan got the 'The Parent Trap' role

How Lindsay Lohan got the ‘The Parent Trap’ role

The actress beat several other well known names such Scarlett Johansson, Jena Malone, and Mara Wilson to play the role of famous twins Hallie and Annie Parker

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It has been 22 years since The Parent Trap remake was released. Lindsay Lohan acted in the 1998 Disney film which turned her into an overnight celebrity. The movie is a classic and perhaps if Lohan was not the star, it may not have achieved such success. Lohan beat a few other actors for the coveted role. The actors who auditioned for the part included Scarlett Johansson, Jena Malone, and Mara Wilson for the roles of Hallie and Annie Parker.

Casting directors for The Parent Trap were looking for the perfect actor. The aim was to be as good if not better than the 1961 original film. The film is about twin sisters Annie James and Hallie Parker who meet each other at a summer camp and find out that they were separated at birth. The twins swap places for an opportunity to get to know their long lost parents in the hopes of reuniting as a family.

More than 1,500 actors auditioned for the roles with some big names trying their luck. The casting directors liked Malone but the young actor was not convinced about the role. Malone said that she turned down Parent Trap three times. In a 1997 interview with the LA Times, her agent begged her to take on the role. The actress also turned down other big films such as Volcano and Air Force One but opted for films with more dramatic tones including Bastard Out Of Carolina and Hidden In America. 

As for Johansson, she really wanted the role in The Parent Trap. Speaking to Metro UK in 2017, the actress said: “[When it came to The Parent Trap, I started to get bitter…it was hard for me.” Actress Wilson had just tasted success from the 1996 film Matilda when she auditioned for The Parent Trap. Unfortunately, the casting directors said that she was too young for the role.

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Lindsay Lohan became famous after her role in The Parent Trap. Picture: Instagram

The writer and director of The Parent Trap chose Lohan to play the role of the famous twins. A body double was used for scenes that featured both twins. Lohan wore a small earpiece that fed her lines of the other sister for split screens. Speaking in a 1998 interview with singer and actor Christina Milian, Lohan explained the tools she used to embody the differences between the twins.

“I just thought how proper one was and then how the calm and cool one was ready to hang out,” she said. In a 2020 interview with People Magazine, Lohan explained that playing long lost twins was easy, considering her own parents were divorcing at the time. “My parents were kind of separating at the time when this was all going on. And it made it a lot easier for me to play these characters that were figuring it out,” she said.

The Parent Trap starring Lohan received critical acclaim and it debuted at No.2 at the box office opening weekend.

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