Take this with a grain of salt, but Bruce Campbell actually had a chance of becoming Chris Redfield. You know, back in the day that created a kind of fuss between Campbell fans, even so far when he even posted a statement on his official website that he WAS involved, but ultimately role went to Jason Patrick.
Also, James Woods was apparently rumored to portray an character named John Fay, altough personally, he could've portrayed an older, and a bit different kind of Wesker.
But real Wesker in his movie would be Bill Pullman, if Romero's movie could've gotten a green light.
There were some ridiculous rumors. Dolph Lundgren as Chris Redfield. yeeaahhhh............ And Arnold Schwarzenegger or Bruce Willis as Barry Burton.
Here are the sources, and you could take them with a huge grain of salt.
And actually, from Romero's mouth, Capcom actually liked the script, but the movie rights belonged to german production company, and the main studio people didn't even played the game before, and didn't really knew what to do with the property.
Here is one of the quotes.
'''' Romero: I guess you have to look at it that way. It's nice. I don't care in a certain sense. Every once in a while, it gets irritating. I had written a script for RESIDENT EVIL that I liked, and that Capcom liked, but then [Constantin Film] just said, "That's not what we want to do." The guy who runs Constantin had never played a video game. Go figure. ''
And on a Bruce Campbell involvement, I found another old tidbit.
''With the immense popularity of ''Resident Evil'', it was inevitable that the videogame franchise would eventually make it's way to the big screen. Capcom began work on a ''Resident Evil'' movie back in 1997, and the initial plans were to have Alan B.Mcelroy (Spawn) write a starring vehicle for horror icon Bruce Campbell (Army of Darkness). However by 1998, George A. Romero, whose films inspired ''Resident Evil'' in the first place, had been brought in to write and direct the film, though he was promptly fired after turning in a weak script.''
From Bruce Campbell to Milla Jovovich.... fascinating.