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We all expect that people will sometimes get hurt during the course of film production. If you shoot a fight sequence or car chase or literally any scene with Gary Busey, you’re eventually getting hurt. But sometimes, randomness and unpredictability get thrown into the equation, and that’s when you end up with weirdass situations like ...
The Last Samurai: An Extra Gets A Horse Hoof To The Groin
Horses are magnificent creatures -- and for those of you not in the horse-know, they’re like a wingless Pegasus, all graceful and powerful and majestic, and at any moment prepared to elude your lasso or carry your happy ass off into the sunset. It depends on whether or not they’re domesticated, I guess. I don’t know, I get all of my horse info from movies, which as I’m finding out while writing this isn’t exactly a solid source for equestrian research.
The knowledge I have gleaned has taught me that horses are awesome, because those magnificent beasts will literally lead us into battle. Even with war raging all around them, their loyalty is unwavering, dutifully galloping straight into a chaotic mess of clanging swords or gunfire, depending on which time period you live in. And all the while they maintain a calm, cool composure.
But as with any creature that has feelings of self-preservation, they’re still likely to be stressed out by the whole thing. This could manifest itself in any number of ways, whether that’s by prancing around nervously or rearing up unexpectedly. And it could happen at any time, even if the fighting isn’t happening in that exact moment, which one extra on the set of The Last Samurai discovered rather painfully when he found himself on the receiving end of a horse hoof to the groin.
At one point in the movie, Tom Cruise’s character Nathan Algren rides into a group of soldiers and dismounts his horse. At that exact moment, the horse decided to show off its own martial arts skills and side kick the extra square in the junk. Remarkably, after a brief moment of what I assume to be holding back the need to vomit and/or pass out, he just ... calmly pulls himself together and gets back in line with the others. Which we know because that scene actually found its way into the final cut of the movie.
Along Came Polly: A Ferret Wages War On Ben Stiller’s Chin
Along Came Polly is a romantic comedy about how zany and quirky Ben Stiller’s character is. You know the one -- it’s completely unlike any of his other films. He finds himself in goofy situations, reacts in hilariously inept ways and hijinks ensue.
As a refresher, Stiller’s character Reuben catches his new wife cheating on him while they’re on their honeymoon, so he ditches her and goes back home, eventually running into a woman he used to go to school with (Polly). They begin dating, and she starts introducing him to things that take him out of his usual comfort zone resulting in comedic antics. See? You remember now.
OK, probably not. Fine, here’s the trailer.
You’ll probably also remember that Polly had a pet ferret named Rodolfo who was old and mostly blind. I’m not sure if the ferret actor was actually old and blind, or if it just played that way in the movie because its acting skills are on point. Regardless, during one scene where Stiller was required to hold it, the ferret decided that its manhandler’s chin was just the worst and figured that it really needed some teeth sunk into it. And to be clear, the ferret didn’t just bite Stiller, it latched onto him. It dug in and wouldn’t let go. It was so bad, in fact, that Stiller had to get a rabies shot as a result.
Wait, weren’t they sure it didn’t have rabies? Were they not using a domesticated ferret, opting for one they found in the wild? Did they let the ferret mingle between takes with some nearby raccoons? So many questions.
The Lost Patrol: Producer Insists The Heat Isn’t So Bad, Suffers Sunstroke
Deserts aren’t the friendliest of places, what with their excessive heat and lack of food and water. And that’s kind of the point behind the 1934 film The Lost Patrol, because a patrol finds themselves lost in one. They do find their way to an oasis, but that’s when they start getting picked off one at a time by some unseen gunmen. Eventually just two of them are left: one of them goes insane and the other ends up mowing down the assailants with a machine gun.
What was really insane, however, was the heat while filming. Since the movie was set in the desert, they decided to actually film it in a desert. Specifically, in Yuma, Arizona. Temperatures exceeded 120F while shooting, so the crew needed to be cautious about when and for how long they would film since that’s just one step below being on actual fire.
One producer wasn’t convinced that the oven-like quality of their set was a factor, though, and instead suggested shortening the break times so they could finish the film more quickly. Mind you, the entire movie was shot in just ten days, so I’m not sure what the huge yank was. And despite director John Ford telling the cocky man that you can’t do that in the desert, the producer was insistent, confidently stomping around the set, smoking a cigar and letting everyone know how awesome he felt.
Shortly thereafter, Ford went to look for him, but he had been admitted to the hospital having suffered sunstroke.
Atomic Blonde: Charlize Theron Clenches Her Teeth Too Hard And Cracks Them
Training to be a secret agent has to be difficult. I wouldn’t know since I’ve never been one, but man, all those secret agent-type movies make it seem that way. The fighting, the shootouts, the understanding of technology that doesn’t exist on any level ... it looks exhausting.
Charlize Theron did an extensive amount of it for her role in 2017’s Atomic Blonde. But it was totally worth it, given she reportedly ended up performing virtually all of her own fighting scenes. And you don’t get to that level by half-assing it -- you get there by all-of-the-assing it.
Of course, any movie with that much fighting is likely going to end up with someone getting hurt at some point. And Theron did, cracking two of her teeth that required oral surgery to repair. But it wasn’t because she was accidentally kicked in the face or caught an errant elbow to the jaw during an elaborately choreographed fight scene -- it was because she clenched her jaw too hard while training for those fight scenes.
That’s ... kind of badass, actually. I don’t think I’ve ever exerted that kind of effort for anything.
P.S. I Love You: Striptease Causes Suspender Malfunction That Gives Hilary Swank Stitches
Wardrobe malfunctions are an unfortunate reality in everyday life and Super Bowl halftime shows. It’s to be expected, since we have all of these little apparatuses desperately trying to hold things together. So be careful, because one wrong move and that button could fly right off your shirt, launching itself across the room as a now-airborne choking hazard or annihilator of eyeballs.
In one scene during the movie P.S. I Love You, Gerard Butler does this goofy striptease for Hilary Swank wearing nothing but boxers and suspenders. It comes to a halt when one of the clasps breaks loose, causing the strap to swing up and hit him in the eye. It’s like a funny little romcom moment.
While filming that scene, the clasp actually did break off at one point, but instead of flying up and hitting Butler, it made a beeline for Swank’s face and nailed her on the forehead. Unfortunately, it wasn’t like the movie scene where it was a laughable moment created by some quirky, unexpected event. The clasp hit her so hard it required stitches, temporarily delaying the film’s production. Fortunately, it narrowly missed her eye, because at stitches-causing velocity that could have been a hell of a lot worse.
I’m sure there’s a lesson in there somewhere, but I’ll be damned if I can find it. No wait, there is: The whole suspenders/boxers combo is impractical, dangerous and looks ridiculous. Don’t ever wear that.