1. - Ava Gardner, The Bible... In The Beginning, 1966. Rome producer Dino DeLaurentiis saw Callas as Sarah, one of his many ideas (like five directors and two six-hour films for $90m) scotched when director John Huston took over. Unfortunately, Huston chose George C Scott as Abraham - and poor Ava soon had the bruises to prove it.
2. - Elizabeth Taylor, Boom (US: Boom!), 1968. Joe Losey wanted her for as Flora “Sissy” Goforth in the (quite terrible) Tennessee Williams piece. Visconti and Zeffirelli also chased her but she wasn’t having any - apart from Pasolini’s Medea, 1969.
3. - Elizabeth Taylor, Identikit, Italy, 1974. Italian director Luchino Visconti's first, only choice, when London producer Joseph Janni bought him Muriel Spark's novel in 1970. Four years on, film-maker Giuseppe Patroni Griffi located Liz.
4. - Kristine Olesen, Medea, Denmark, 1988. The great Danish film-maker, Carl Theodor Dreyer (Las passion de Jeanne d’Arc, Vampyr, Gertrud) was first to try and unite La Callas and Euripides. The veteran could not raise a budget; she made another version for Pasolini, 1969. Dreyer died in 1968 at age 69. And Lars Von Trier filmed Dreyer’s script 20 years later.