Hollywood screenwriters toil over what each character in the story will say no matter if they’re working on romantic comedies, dramas, and even kids’ movies. The lines are then often debated and rewritten many times before, during, and after a movie is shot. But they are not the ones who decide what ends up in the final cut. Directors do. And if they like an improvised scene better than the scripted one, the writers just have to deal with it. It’s part of the process. In fact, you’d probably be surprised to know that some really iconic moments in movie history have been authentic. Here are some of them.
Leo said that the cast and crew gave him a standing ovation after the scene was finished, and he kept acting in the scene because “it was more interesting to watch Quentin’s and Jamie’s reaction off-camera than to look at my hand.”
In the movie Now You See Me, Isla Fisher’s character performs a magic trick that requires her to be in a tank underwater that she needs to escape from. In the scene, she struggles and starts to drown, unable to get out. While filming the scene, Isla was actually in the tank, and she wasn’t pretending to drown — she was actually drowning. Her release chain got stuck on her costume, and she wasn’t able to get out quickly. Everyone thought she was just acting really well, however, she was actually panicking, struggling to get out of the tank for nearly three minutes before she was rescued.
In one scene in Princess Bride, Cary Elwes’ character Westley gets clonked on the head pretty hard by the six-fingered man, played by Christopher Guest.
But when it came time to film the scene, the stunt didn’t look realistic enough. So Elwes suggested that Guest knock him as hard as he could using a real metal sword.
“Because of the angle, we couldn’t sell a fake blow well enough for the camera, so I told him to just hit me hard,” Elwes wrote in his book, As You Wish.
“And that’s the last thing I remember. I woke up in the hospital.”
Camp may be the place for bonding, but this boot camp was really tough, and the fact that Matt was at home relaxing definitely created a divide. It was so horrible that after day four, everyone wanted to quit, but Tom Hanks encouraged them to stick it out. Matt said that when he eventually showed up on set there some resentment from the guys, and it translated onto the screen.
The actors didn’t know where the cameras were placed and it looked like complete chaos, but the structure turned out to be quite realistic and just needed a bit of drilling to remain held together
In the scene, you can see Jennifer Jason Leigh break character and scream and look at the crew because she was in disbelief when the antique guitar – which was supposed to be swapped out with a prop in between takes – got smashed.
The old guitar, which was made in 1870, was actually on loan from a museum. Dick Boak, the museum’s director, changed their policy because of this mishap and said, “As a result of the incident, the company will no longer loan guitars to movies under any circumstances.”
In one scene, Marty gets strung up on the famous Hill Valley clock tower. In what was without a doubt something he later regretted, Fox said “Sure” to performing the stunt himself.
The plan was for him to use his hand to keep the noose from tightening around his neck and actually strangling him. In practice, he couldn’t get his hand into position and actually blacked out for a minute, until the crew realized what was happening and saved his life.
It was hard for the actors to say goodbye to Steve Carell. That’s why in the scene Pam rushes in the airport to say goodbye to Michael the emotional performance by Jenna Fisher was not a performance at all
The meticulousness with which the film was created had a cost: Shelley Duvall’s wellbeing. Kubrick tormented the actress, making her do relentless takes, while verbally abusing her and dismissing her acting talent. This was intentional, as revealed in The Making of The Shining. Stanley Kubrick’s daughter, Vivian Kubrick, described how her father terrorized Duvall in order to make the insecurity of her character viscerally apparent.
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