Kevin Costner in The Big Chill (1983)
Perhaps the most infamous example of an actor’s performance being left on the cutting room floor is Kevin Costner in The Big Chill. Still years away from becoming a star in his own right, Costner played Alex, one of a group of friends who gather for his funeral after he commits suicide. Several flashbacks with Costner’s character were filmed but ultimately cut, with only Costner’s wrists being shown as the corpse is displayed in the funeral home at the beginning of the film. Director Lawrence Kasdan would make it up to Costner by casting him in his 1985 Western Silverado.