Why Platonic's Luke Macfarlane Had To Give Up A Role In Barbie To Star On The Apple TV+ Series

Luke Macfarlane is one of Hollywood's most interesting stars. The actor has lent his talents to several memorable television shows, but he's most well-known for being a fixture on the Hallmark Channel, boasting over a dozen appearances on the network's cinematic offerings. His cult-like following has made him one of the industry's most sought-after stars and rightfully so — Macfarlane has been captivating audiences for nearly two decades. It's only recently that he's getting the clout and applause he deserves.

Macfarlane was most recently seen in Billy Eichner's romantic comedy "Bros," a gig that saw him bask in universal kudos. Now, he's part of the Apple TV+ series "Platonic," which stars Seth Rogen and Rose Byrne as two friends who reconnect. Macfarlane plays the husband of Bryne's character, who frequently tries to become buds with Rogen. Unsurprisingly, the Hallmark actor is receiving compliments left and right for his role in "Platonic." Looper critic Cynthia Vinney was particularly impressed with how Macfarlane's character was fleshed out, operating as more than just a foil in the two friend's relationship.

As great as his role in "Platonic" is, Macfarlane had to give up a gig in "Barbie" for it. While speaking with The Hollywood Reporter, the actor opened up about how scheduling conflicts got in the way of starring in the Greta Gerwig-directed film, which is set to make a splash at the box office. "It was interesting because I had auditioned for a small part in 'Barbie' and got it," the actor said. "We tried to make it work, and I was like, 'You know what? I really, really wanted to work on this show.'" Ultimately, he ended up choosing "Platonic" — which might just be one of his best creative choices. 

Luke Macfarlane made the right call picking Platonic

Choosing to pick "Platonic" was easy. While continuing his chat with THR, Luke Macfarlane made it clear: he understands his "Platonic" character. Being more in tune with "Platonic" and its demands is what compelled him to pick the Apple TV+ series over the Margot Robbie-starring "Barbie," which also features Issa Rae and Ryan Gosling.

"Careers are funny things — you never really know," Macfarlane said. "When I read about the character on the page, I was like, 'This is somebody I understand.'" For Macfarlane, it was his character's uptightness that felt second nature. Compared to the loud-mouthed characters played by Rogen and Byrne, Macfarlane's Charlie is calm and relaxed, shaking up the dynamic the duo brings to the table. "He's really got a strong moral center, and he believes in doing things the right way, and he's a little stiff," Macfarlane added about his character. For Macfarlane, choosing to do "Platonic" is the right call — it's his first major non-Hallmark project. 

It's also a lead role, one that allows him to explore a character in a more complex and in-depth way. It remains to be seen if there is awards chatter in the future for Macfarlane, but it's certain that the complex role will open up doors for him as he expands his career. While it certainly would have been interesting to have seen Macfarlane in "Barbie," it's worth noting that his role in the pink meta-comedy would have paled in size compared to "Platonic" gig.

Luke Macfarlane's Barbie role was small

Continuing his chat with THR, Luke Macfarlane revealed that the "Barbie" role he auditioned for was small in nature. Despite trying his best to make both "Barbie" and "Platonic" work, scheduling couldn't make both projects manifest, forcing Macfarlane to drop the iconic doll for the Apple TV+ series. "It was one of those brutal things," Macfarlane said about having to choose between both projects. While he's clearly happy with his starring role in "Platonic," Macfarlane is still disappointed that both couldn't work out. "It was a small, little part, but I've never been part of some beautiful, big, cool thing like that," he continued. "It would have been cool to be able to do both." 

Indeed, it would have been cool to have seen Macfarlane grace the silver screen alongside Robbie, Gosling, and a slew of other A-listers. While details are slim on who Macfarlane could have played, it's most likely that the "Bros" star would have taken on the role of a Ken. Gerwig's "Barbie" features a number of Ken iterations, with variations played by Gosling, Simu Liu, Kingsley Ben-Adir, John Cena, and more. It certainly would have been cool to imagine Macfarlane joining that star-studded line-up. For now, audiences should be grateful that Macfarlane is receiving major attention with a project like "Platonic." What does the future have in store for the actor? When asked that question by THR, Macfarlane candidly revealed how he wants to headline a second season of "Platonic." Of course, he has no plans to stop his domination as Hallmark's main act, confirming he has more projects in the work come Christmas.