Actors frequently assume that because they are good at acting on film, they must also be talented musicians. (Ask Jeremy Renner.) Similarly, several actors mistakenly believe that their ability to read scripts and follow directions on stage translates into actual acting ability. Ad-libs and impromptu creative choices can be great when they work out and result in transcendent cinematic touchstones.
The present moment is not one of those times. Not to let you wait anymore, scroll down to see the list of the six dumbest suggestions from favorite actors behind the scenes.
1. Schwarzenegger Wanted The Terminator To Get Drunk
Arnold Schwarzenegger felt the film couldn’t be a classic without slapstick, so he devised a sequence in which the T-800 finds a beer can in a refrigerator and consumes it. Then he gets intoxicated and staggers, like any unstoppable kill-bot after a Miller High Life.
Old-fashioned Cameron interrupted his star and said, “Arnold, it’s a device. Non-human. not et No drinking.” Schwarzenegger said Cameron was possessive of his writing and didn’t like suggestions, which seems absurd. Now we’ll never know the genuine masterpiece the film could have been if, 20 minutes before the Terminator demonically emerged from an inferno, it knocked over items in a house and texted Sarah Connor typo-filled apologies.
2. Leonard Nimoy Wanted Spock’s Pointy Ears Surgically Removed
Source: Star Trek
Leonard Nimoy objected to Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry about Spock’s “grotesque” sharp ears. Roddenberry was afraid to remove the character’s ears since they made him look “foreign.” He’s a bowl-cut guy without them. Nimoy hated Spock’s sharp ears throughout the series. Roddenberry compromised by writing an episode in which Spock gets human ears.
Fred Phillips, the show’s makeup artist, defended the first officer. He understood the studio had already paid for the flimsy ears and didn’t want to pay again for nicer ones. Phillips convinced them to spend seven figures for less-stupid Spock ears, and the Vulcan signifiers stayed. In “Spock’s Brain,” an alien pulls Spock’s brain out of his head, and the crew has 24 hours to put it back in.
3. The Bad Guy In The Warriors And A Dead Pigeons
Source: The Warriors
In 1979’s hilarious gang thriller The Warriors, Luther clinks bottles while baiting the heroes into identifying themselves. David Patrick Kelly came up with the idea. Creepy and odd works. Kelly wanted to stick his fingers into pigeon corpses instead of bottles. He didn’t just spitball a random idea; he scrounged up two dead Coney Island pigeons lying about, packed them in a paper sack, and gave them to Hill like a proud cat after a hard day on the prowl.
Unfortunately, Hill said, “That won’t work.” The rotting birds were replaced with the bottles we love. Was that The Warriors’ craziest idea? Maybe. Hill was close. To lend the film Homeric seriousness, he wanted Orson Welles to narrate the introduction. Paramount refused to pay for it, so Welles sold cheap booze.
4. Rutger Hauer Battled With Buffy Naked
Source: Blade Runner
Rutger Hauer played frightening villains, most notably Roy Batty in Blade Runner, for whom he improvised the “tears in the rain” monologue. A decade later, he brought his talent for playing villains and enjoyment of bold, odd proposals to the set of Buffy The Vampire Slayer. Hauer and Sutherland were cast to provide respectability to the Kristy Swanson / Luke Perry teen action-horror-comedy.
Still, both also had strong ideas about how a “chosen one” cheerleader should slay vampires led by Hauer and Pee-wee Herman. Sutherland rejected Joss Whedon’s plans and improvised his lines, while Hauer annoyed Swanson. Hauer wanted Lothos to fight Buffy naked under his robe. He doubled down by filming a dream scenario in black underpants and an open robe. Swanson asked him to put on pants. Remembering, “He says, “But I do want to” in a small voice. He put on his pants, which was hilarious.”
5. Chris Pratt And Andy Dwyer
Source: Parks And Recreation
Chris Pratt intended to be in Parks And Recreation’s first season, but he won us over with his guitar-toting, shoeshine-by-day, detective-by-night buffoonery. He was like a huge dumb adorable golden retriever, but tragically.
The Parks And Rec writers considered creating a Six Feet Under-style ending, flashing forward to see how each character dies. Pratt proposed Andy die in a hot car with the windows rolled up, then April dies of a broken heart. The writers never used it. The small-town comedy didn’t end with a Goodfellas-style tracking shot of Star-body Lord in a Cadillac.
6. Gary Busey And His Outrageous Demands
Quigley, starring Gary Busey, went straight to video in 2003. Daddy Dog Day was released in the UK. Quigley follows a nasty businessman who dies in a car accident, gets to Heaven, and is reincarnated as a Pomeranian by God to atone for his sins. Critics called it, “I’m seeing a Pomeranian who’s supposed to be Gary Busey.” Quigley never was Citizen Canine.
It was a hasty cash grab for intoxicated and/or broke parents. As expected with a children’s picture starring Gary “I Scream at 11-Year-Olds” Busey, production issues arose. Busey refused to shoot the Heaven transition sequence until the set was altered to seem like Heaven. Having been there, he knew.
In 1988, Busey survived a catastrophic motorbike accident that purportedly sent him to the afterlife. The real Heaven looks nothing like what the Quigley set designer made for this movie, which stars Busey as a Pomeranian. Busey said the sofa in Quigley’s Heaven was “wrong” and that Heaven doesn’t contain mirrors. He was too frustrated to mention the lack of “huge balls of light that float and bring only love and warmth.” Busey wouldn’t record unless the set matched his experience.
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