Behind-The-Scenes Movie Facts Shared On Talk Shows
But, let’s be real, it’s mostly The Graham Norton Show.
So — as a movie lover who doesn’t pay for traditional cable — one of my personal favorite activities is watching various celebrity talk show interviews on YouTube. IDK why, I just enjoy it! I’m a riveting person, I assure you.*
Anyway, I often find some of my absolute favorite fun behind-the-scenes stories and facts by doing this, and these often make their way into my posts for BuzzFeed dot com the website! The site you’re on right now! So, I decided to go back and round up just a few of my favorite behind-the-scene stories shared on talk shows by celebs over the years, and put them into one of these handy-dandy listicles!
Ready? I sure hope so! Here we go:
First, the clip that started it all/gave me the idea for this post in the first place: Taika Waititi revealed on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert that he “borrowed” stuff from The Hobbit set to make What We Do in the Shadows.
“When I did What We Do in the Shadows…we didn’t have much money to do that film, and The Hobbit had just wrapped. So, our production designer — man, I don’t know if I should tell this [story], but I will.”
“Our production designer, in the dead of night, took his crew to the Hobbit studios and stole all of the dismantled, broken down green screens and took all of the timber…the house in What We Do in the Shadows is built out of The Hobbit‘s green screens.”
“I have never talked to Peter Jackson about this. I don’t know if he knows. I like telling this story at parties, but I don’t know if he actually knows.”
Margot Robbie shared on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon that her underwater stunt in 2016’s Suicide Squad was very, very real.
“I had to learn how to hold my breath underwater for a really long time,” Margot said. “So, I worked with this amazing free diver, and he came in, and I did four sessions with him. His name is Kirk — I called him Captain Kirk.”
“It’s all about lowering your metabolic rate. … It’s all about conserving oxygen. You kind of, like, meditate underwater. It’s what free divers do! Anyway, we did four sessions. … Once you start moving — because I obviously had to be fighting underwater — you use up more oxygen, and then you can’t stay under as long.”
“But I could do a resting breath-hold of five minutes, which I never thought was possible. I had thought, ‘Oh, maybe I’ll aim for three [minutes].'”
And talk shows must be THE PLACE to brag about your breath-holding abilities, because Tom Cruise also discussed his impressive lung capacity, but this time on The Graham Norton Show.
After expressing concern for Tom’s well-being, Graham urged Tom to tell the crowd how long he had to learn to hold his breath for a stunt in the Mission Impossible franchise, to which Tom casually answered: “Six and a half minutes.”
“It’s just [the] takes underwater, because the time you get rid of the regulator, get rid of the bubbles, get on the side — and we wanted to do it in one shot,” he said. “So they were very, very long shots. These takes took [a long time], so I’d have to hold it consistently, you know, safely for up to almost four minutes for every take.”
When asked how, he explained: “I’ve got a low heart rate anyway — a very low heart rate — which means my body isn’t using as much oxygen, but we did stuff to bring the heart rate down lower [with] certain breathing exercises. And I trained for a long time to the point where, when I finished the sequence, there’d be times when I’d be sitting there talking in meetings and I wouldn’t breathe. I’d realize ‘I’m not breathing,’ and I’d have to turn my autonomic system back on to breath again.”
Zendaya also opened up about how she and Zac Efron really had to learn to do a lot of the trapeze stunts for The Greatest Showman, and how she got the confidence boost she need from Hugh Jackman.
“Our director called me, and he said, ‘Listen, we want to workshop this like a real Broadway production,’ and I was like, ‘Great!’ and he was like, ‘Also, you may want to start working out because you have trapeze rehearsal when you get here, and I want to use the stunt doubles as little as possible.'”
“So I was like, ‘Okay.’ So as soon as I got there, I started building upper body strength — which I do not have and have not maintained either, so don’t ask me to do trapeze,” she joked. “But it was a lot of training. A lot of getting up there and just going for it.”
“I remember I had been rehearsing on this specific rig that I was used to. I had become normal with that height difference, and there was a net…but then I showed up onset, and the rig was 15 ft.-20 ft. taller, and there was no net. … I was hooked up, so I was safe,” she finished. “And right as I was going to go up in the cherry picker, Hugh Jackman walked by and was like, ‘Zendaya, you’re a badass,’ and I was like, ‘TAKE ME UP!'”
And, while we’re speakin’ of stunts, it turns out Zendaya and Tom Holland’s height difference caused them to regularly goof up a Spider-Man: No Way Home stunt in the most precious way possible.
“There’s a stunt where Spider-Man swings me on top of a bridge, and he places me there. So he’s supposed to gently rest MJ on the bridge and walk away from her,” Zendaya said.
“Because of our height difference — we were attached [by a harness] — I’d land before him. My feet would, obviously, hit the ground before he does!”
“So, Zendaya would land,” Tom said. “And I’m the superhero. I’m supposed to look cool. And she would land, and I would sort of land like this, and she would catch me. … It’s so nice to be caught for a change!”
On the subject of heights, Emma Stone revealed on The Graham Norton Show that she had to have a body double during her lift scene in Crazy, Stupid, Love, as she’d suffered a rather horrific accident in her youth during gymnastics class.
“I was on parallel bars that were about six feet off of the ground…and somehow or other [the instructor] let go…and I fell 6 feet to the ground, and I broke both of my arms at the same time,” she said.
“So…years later, we do Crazy, Stupid, Love; I know we’re going to do the Dirty Dancing lift — I don’t know, however, that I have an internalized phobia of being lifted over someone’s head at the height of about 6 feet,” Stone continued. “So I run to do the lift, and Ryan [Gosling] lifts me over his head, and…what did I do, Ryan?”
“I’ve never had this happen,” Gosling answered. “But I imagine if an opossum fell out of a tree and tried to scratch your eyes out, it’d be something similar.”
Switching gears dramatically: During an interview with The Ellen DeGeneres Show at the height of Twilight mania, Robert Pattinson revealed that, due to ratings concerns, they had to ~*cut*~ part of Bella and Edward’s “baby-making” scene…but not in the way you’d expect.
“There was a bit too much butt crack, I think. That’s one thing I know they cut out,” Robert said. “But they didn’t cut the shot, they just cut [my] crack out…they painted over it.”
“They cover it so there’s no crack on your butt? So you’re one solid cheek?” Ellen asked, confused and dismayed (like all of us).
“I found this out the other day. They just painted over it,” Robert finished. “You’re allowed to show cheek, but you can’t show the crack.”
And Jamie Dornan revealed on Jimmy Kimmel Live! just how absolutely unsexy filming all of those sex scenes were in the Fifty Shades franchise.
“They try to keep it a closed set for the sex stuff; they try to keep it [open] for only whoever really needs to be there — like me,” Jamie joked.
And, when asked if he wears “any covering” during the scenes, Jamie responded: “I wear like a wee bag. Well, that’s an expression I say from where I’m from, that doesn’t mean it’s actually ‘wee’ inside. I wear quite a big bag.”
“On the first movie, I thought…these will be brand new. So, on the first one, I picked one that I liked the look of and the shape of, but on the inside, it said, ‘Inmate #3’,” he said. “It was, like, sewn in, and I was like, ‘Shit, this has been used?!'”
While on the subject of sex scenes, Jennifer Lawrence was very open on Late Night with Seth Meyers about how she handled shooting her first ever sex scene opposite Chris Pratt in Passengers.
“I was so nervous because I was so scared of coming across as, well, a predator for one,” she joked. “Because, like, with sex scenes, you don’t know what to do. You’re like, ‘Is it enough?’ but your worst nightmare is, ‘Is it too much?'”
And, when Seth asked how much she and Chris talked about it ahead of time, she responded, “Well, you don’t! I mean, you can’t. It’s so uncomfortable! I mean, what am I going to be like? ‘Oh, are you going to hump me once? Are you going to be on top?'”
“I had a bottle of whiskey…but then you forget, you’re at work, so you’re going to be here another three hours.”
And that wasn’t the only time Jennifer opened up about her on-set experiences! While on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, she revealed how she coped with shooting the horrific scenes in Mother! (2017) — namely, by watching Keeping Up with the Kardashians.
“I got to such a dark place emotionally that I had to start bringing the Kardashians in,” she said. “Not in person, obviously!”
“I had to do this one scene where I had never gone that dark before. … I had never done something that horrifying, so I started getting scared a couple of days before, and I was like, ‘I need a tent, just to be away from all of the extras’ just because I didn’t know what I would do.”
“But it was just a computer that was playing the Kardashians, and it had [their] headshots, and it also had little notes to me from them that I had written. Just my own personal thoughts.”
Though, few people know what it’s like to cope with behind-the-scenes chaos like living legend Julie Andrews, who revealed on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon just how un-glamorous shooting the iconic opening to The Sound of Music was.
“We were out there for ages because the weather was not kind to us. Somebody forgot to mention that Austria has the world’s seventh highest annual rainfall, so we had a lot of rain while we were shooting. So, a lot of the time, we actually shot with rain.”
“And these huge sound speakers were in the trees, because we’re lip syncing…and this monstrous helicopter had this cameraman very bravely strapped to the side where the door would be, and he had a camera strapped to him.”
“I’d come into view, make my turn…and every time the helicopter had finished [its circle], the downdraft from the jet engines flung me into the grass. So, we did this about six or seven times, and I was spitting dirt and hay and things like that, and I’d say, ‘COULDN’T YOU TAKE A WIDER CIRCLE AROUND?!'”
Shifting gears here: While on The Graham Norton Show, Mark Hamill revealed that he had to keep the whole Darth Vader being Luke’s father thing a secret from literally everyone, and exactly how he managed to accomplish that.
“In contrast, when we did [the original] Star Wars, nobody cared! I read it, and I gave it to my friend to read and was like, ‘This is the goofiest thing I’ve ever read.’ … I passed [the script] all around, nobody cared! By the second film, that’s when the scrutiny became more intense.”
So, Mark explained, to keep the secret, they created a decoy twist in the script for the other actors: “There was a wonderful substitute revelation in that scene. … Vader said, ‘You don’t know the truth — Obi-Wan killed your father!’ And the idea of Alec Guinness being the real villain, I thought, was a spectacular twist.”
“The director took me aside and said, ‘I’m going to tell you something: I know it, George Lucas knows it, and when I tell you, you’ll know it — but, if it leaks, we’ll know it was you,” Mark finished. “And he handed me the piece of paper that said, ‘I am your father.’ … Then, I was paranoid. I had to keep the secret for a year and a half!”
But, on the side of secrets not-so-well-kept, Chris Evans told The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon about how he accidentally — and adorably — spoiled the end of Avengers: Endgame for Anthony Mackie.
When Jimmy asked Chris if Anthony knew going into filming that Captain America’s shield would be passed to Falcon, Chris said, “You know, there’s actually a really great story with that!”
“The scripts are so lock and key, but they had given me the scene where I pass the shield to Mackie. … I did know that Mackie was getting the shield,” he said. “While we were filming in Atlanta, I had already read the scene, and I had a few people over to watch a football game, and Mackie was the first one to show up…but I didn’t know that he didn’t know what was going to happen.”
“I said, ‘Hey man, isn’t that scene fantastic?!’ and he said, ‘What scene?’ and I said, ‘The scene where I give you the shield!’ and he said, ‘…you’re giving me the shield?!’ and I said, ‘OH NO,'” he finished. “So I ran to my room and I got the scene, and I got to watch him read the scene for the first time where he gets the shield.”
And finishing up on perhaps the sweetest talk show revelation(s): Sandra Bullock revealed on The Ellen DeGeneres Show that she fully had a crush on Keanu Reeves the whole time they were filming Speed.
“I always think about how sweet Keanu Reeves was, and how handsome he was,” Sandra said. “It was hard. It was hard for me to be serious.”
“Like, he would look at me, and I’d be like [giggles]. And his job — my dress kept flying up. So, his job, I said, ‘Whatever you do, just keep my dress down. And the whole stunt, he made sure my dress [was down].”
When asked directly by Ellen if they ever “got together,” Sandra answered: “I never dated him, I guess there was something about me he didn’t like! But I think we’ve probably been friends for that long because we didn’t.”
BUT THEN, in a beautiful moment of ships-passing-in-the-night, Keanu Reeves ALSO revealed on The Ellen DeGeneres Show that he fully had a crush on Sandra Bullock, as well!
After Ellen showed Keanu the above clip of Sandra confessing her crush, he responded: “She obviously didn’t know I had a crush on her, either.”
Then, when asked why they didn’t act on their feelings, Keanu delightfully responded: “We were working!”
“It was nice to go to work,” he concluded. “And she was such a wonderful person.”
There ya have it! What’s your favorite behind-the-scenes movie fact or story you only learned because you heard it told on a talk show? Share your pick(s) in the comments below!