What almost wasn’t! It’s hard to imagine Jennifer Garner starring in 13 Going on 30 opposite anyone other than Mark Ruffalo, but that was almost the case.
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During an appearance theSkimm’s “Texting With” digital series on Wednesday, March 17, Garner revealed that Ruffalo nearly quit the film because of the scene where their characters, Jenna Rink and Matt Flamhaff, respectively, danced to Michael Jackson’s hit “Thriller.”
“We started to learn the dance. Our first rehearsal, I think it was like Mark, Judy [Greer] and me,” the Yes Day star, 48, recalled. “Judy and I were both dancers growing up, and poor Mark didn’t know that. And he came in and he hated the rehearsal process so much, he almost dropped out of the movie.”
The 2004 rom-com directed by Gary Winick follows Jenna as she makes a wish on her 13th birthday to be “30, flirty and thriving.” The next day, she wakes up as a 30-year-old version of herself.
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Despite nearly backing out of the project, Ruffalo, 53, previously indicated that he enjoyed working on 13 Going on 30 alongside Garner.
“We had the sweetest time,” the I Know This Much Is True star told Entertainment Tonight in April 2019. “[Jennifer] was a big star then, but I was kind of just starting out. She was just so lovely. We were making this really sweet movie that had a great message for young girls. We were all sort of coming into our own in that moment. We really loved that story and Jen was just transformed into a 13-year-old girl. It was really amazing.”
Garner and Ruffalo reunited last month to shoot their first movie together since 13 Going on 30 called The Adam Project. The A-listers star as a married pair who are parents to Ryan Reynolds’ titular character. Adam travels back in time to find his father and help save mankind.
When the Alias alum joined Good Morning America on March 9, she shared her positive experience of working with the Avengers: Endgame actor again after all these years.
“It was wonderful,” she said at the time. “We were playing a married couple and we just had this instant comfort, and obviously there’s just such a connection and a warmth. It was actually a really beautiful experience to revisit that relationship.”
Garner then dished that her recent reunion with Greer, 45, happened “right before” she saw Ruffalo, so she “was able to kind of pass messages back and forth” between the pair.
Additionally, the Peppermint star speculated on where she believed her former 13 Going on 30 character would be today. “She would have to still have some 13-year-old in her,” the actress said. “But, oh, gosh, I have to go back and watch this movie. It’s so fun … Is Poise still going? Is it all online? What’s happening?”
Last year, Garner shut down the possibility of the iconic film scoring a sequel in the near future. She shared on Good Morning America in April 2019, “What, like 15 Going on 50? Let’s simmer down and then let’s leave well enough alone.”
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