Arnie On Declining Die Hard & The Rock

Schwarzenegger on turning down Bay & co.

Arnold Schwarzenegger

Arnold Schwarzenegger is back. The cover star of the latest issue of Empire, his comeback special features a 16-page access-all-areas interview, and as you'd expect from a man so frank and funny as Arnie, he offers up more than a few tidbits over the course of proceedings – including the stories of how he turned down roles The Rock and Die Hard.

As Arnie tells the tale, '80s super producer Don Simpson burst into his trailer "totally stoned" one day with 85 pages of The Rock's script with handwritten notes all over it by Jerry Bruckheimer.

"He says, 'Here, look at this script. But don't read it! Just, here's what the premise is. He was all over the place," he explains. "I said, 'Look, Don. I can't make a commitment based on what you're showing me here. You won't even let me read the script! Why don't you bake it some more, develop it some more then we'll talk again.' He was very upset. He just walked out and then went to Nicolas Cage with the part..."

As for Die Hard, "...there was an unfinished script, which someone gave me and said, 'Would you want to play this?' I was working with Joel Silver on Predator and Die Hard was his next movie. So we talked about it but then he hired Bruce Willis."

Of course, these aren't the first roles Arnie has had to turn down/wasn't able to take over his career – including Full Metal Jacket's Animal Mother, Doctor Octopus in James Cameron's abandoned Spider-Man project and more – but there's something about the idea of Schwarzenegger in a vest and no shoes/awkwardly trying to remove bright green balls from a tube that'll make many action fans' heads spin.

This news comes a couple of weeks' after James Cameron told Huffington Post UK that he was hours away from getting the rights to Jurassic Park, making this month a doozie for booze-fueled movie "What if...?" pub conversations.

For more details on Arnie, be sure to read the latest issue of Empire – on shelves Thursday September 27 – which has so much Schwarzenegger in it, you may well cry with with joy. And to make sure you get lovely limited edition covers every month (like the one on the left above), subscribe to Empire today.