Despite their acclaimed work, the stars say they still missed out on other roles they really wanted

By Mia McNiece
Updated October 04, 2016 07:40 PM
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Credit: Brian Bowen Smith

She’s been nominated for an Oscar 19 times – and won three – but even with a track record like that, Meryl Streep says she still missed out on a role she really wanted.

When the actress heard that English director Karel Reisz, whom she had previously worked with on The French Lieutenant’s Woman, was coming to America in 1985 to direct a film about Patsy Cline, she was very eager to get the role.

“Karel was a friend of mine who I adored, and he was making a film about Patsy Cline who is a singer I adored,” Streep tells PEOPLE.

But unfortunately for Streep, Reisz decided to cast Jessica Lange as the lead in his film Sweet Dreams.

Yet Streep, 67, made sure to find the silver lining in losing out on the role by making a deal with the director. That same year, she went on to star in the film Plenty, which happened to be filming in England near Reisz’s home.

“I told him, ‘Well the least you can do is let me stay at your house while I am there,’ ” says Streep. “He did, and it was a beautiful house.”

For more on Meryl Streep and Hugh Grant, pick up this week’s issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday

Meanwhile, Streep’s costar in her new film Florence Foster Jenkins, , tells PEOPLE he, too, has some “terrible regrets” about past roles.

The actor, 55, admits he turned down a film that went on to become a mega success.

“There is an absolute humdinger of a mistake I made,” says Grant. And although he confirms the role was not James Bond, he’s tight-lipped about it, simply saying, “It really was a fabulous mistake.”