Behind the Curtain: 37 Little Know Facts About Your Favorite Films – Part 2

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1James Gunn

James Gunn

It was discovered after James Gunn wrote the script for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 that Marvel didn’t own the character of Ego, the Living Planet. Instead, the rights belonged to FOX Studios, and James Gunn did not have a backup plan. Fortunately, FOX needed the permission from Marvel Studios to change key details about the Negasonic Teenage Warhead in the Deadpool film, which Marvel happily allowed in exchange for Ego’s character rights.

2. The unstable blade of Kylo Ren’s lightsaber in Star Wars: The Force Awakens is created by a cracked Kyber Crystal. The excess power is vented out its sides, thus creating its crossguard-like design.

3. The Wachowski sisters, directors of the Matrix trilogy, wrote a script for an action comedy take on DC Comics’ Plastic Man in the 1990s, and though it has never come to fruition, the duo were reportedly interested in shooting it as recently as 2008 with Keanu Reeves rumored to play the lead role.

4. Director Jordan Vogt-Roberts originally pitched that Kong: Skull island would open on a bunch of soldiers discovering a large ape visually similar to the one in Peter Jackson’s 2005 King Kong and killing it, in hopes, it would trick the audience until the real, much larger Kong debuts. The studio absolutely refused.

5. The design of the Skull Crawlers from Kong: Skull Island were partly inspired by the Pokémon Cubone, known for wearing its dead mother’s skull on its head.

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Gareth Edwards, director of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, revealed that the name of the planet where the film’s climactic battle takes place was inspired by an incident where a coffee shop barista misheard the filmmaker’s name and wrote “Scarif” on his order.

7. George Lucas derived the word “Sith” from Edgar Rice Burroughs’ John Carter of Mars series, in which the sith are giant, venomous, hornet-like insects that are difficult to kill.

8. Doc Brown’s dog Einstein in Back to the Future was originally written to be a chimpanzee named Shemp, but was changed after a studio executive told Bob Gale “movies with chimps never made money”.

9. Peter Venkman, Bill Murray’s character in 1984’s Ghostbusters, was originally written for John Belushi but had to be recast when the actor passed away.  Dan Aykroyd later stated that he always thought of Slimer as the Ghost of John Belushi.

10. Crispin Glover, who portrayed George McFly in the first Back to the Future did not return for the sequels because he reportedly asked for too much money. Instead, he was replaced by a lookalike in a latex mask, prompting Glover to sue the producers for using his likeness, for which he was awarded $1 million.

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11Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

To promote the release of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Google Maps added various hidden locations from the film for users to explore, including the MACUSA Headquarters, The Blind Pig, and Tina and Queenie Goldstein’s apartment.

12. After the mediocre response to Superman Returns, Warner Bros. canceled a planned Superman vs. Batman film in order to reboot the character. The reboot, which became Man Of Steel, was developed specifically to “reintroduce Superman without regard to a Batman and Superman movie at all,” even though that’s what the film’s sequel eventually became.

13. Kate Upton was among Warner Bros. top considerations for the role of Tina Goldstein in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.

14. Elon Musk commissioned Jose Fernandez, the costume designer for Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, to design the space suits for his SpaceX program, as he wanted the suits to look “bada*s” and “heroic”.

15. The writers of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II, considered changing the duel between Professors Snape and McGonagall into one between Snape and Harry Potter. J.K. Rowling scrapped the idea, believing the duel was a key moment for McGonagall’s character. 

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16Ello Asty

Ello Asty

The Star Wars: The Force Awakens character Ello Asty is a reference the 1998 Beastie Boys album “Hello Nasty”. His Resistance pilot helmet features the words “Born to Ill” in Aurebesh lettering, which refers to another of their albums, “Licensed to Ill”. Director J.J. Abrams has been known to include Beastie Boys songs in his feature films. 

17. The original screenplay for the Fantastic Four reboot (2015) featured Annihilus and Mole Man as central villains, 60-foot genetically-engineered monster attacking New York City, “a Saving Private Ryan-style finale” set in in war-torn Latveria against an army of Doombots, and Galactus and the Silver Surfer destroying an entire planet in a post-credits scene. These ideas were scrapped to keep costs down.

18. When the Tyrannosaurus Rex rampages through San Diego in The Lost World: Jurassic Park, a Japanese man running through the street quickly says a line in Japanese. Translated into English, he says, “I left Japan to get away from this!” 

19. The Dark Knight trilogy director Christopher Nolan based his characterization of Bruce Wayne on Teddy Roosevelt, the 26th president of the United States. To Nolan, both characters overcame great personal loss and a traumatic childhood by reinventing themselves and personally taking on crime.

20. Wonder Woman actress Gal Gadot attended law school after she left the Israeli military, with intention of becoming a lawyer, but her agent persuaded her to drop out in order to audition for the role of a “Bond girl” in Quantum of Solace, a part she did not ultimately receive.

21Suicide Squad

Suicide Squad

Director David Ayer hired an on-set therapist to help the cast of Suicide Squad deal with the “torment” of their roles between takes. 

22. Director Tobe Hooper hoped that by implying much of the violence off-screen and limiting foul language, The Texas Chain Saw Massacre would receive a “PG" rating. The Rating Board insisted on nothing less than an “R” rating based on the story alone, and the British censors downright rejected the film.

23. Stan Lee’s least favorite casting in a Marvel movie has been Julian McMahon as Doctor Doom in the 2005 Fantastic Four film, which he found disappointing. 

24. Concerned that the Chewbacca costume would be mistaken for Bigfoot while they filmed in the forests of Northern California, the production crew of Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi wore brightly-colored vests to stand near the actor in order to not alarm any local hikers or hunters.

25. Writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick worked alongside Ryan Reynolds on Deadpool for over six years. When FOX Studios wouldn’t pay the writers to be on set every day to come up with new jokes and fine-tune scenes, Reynold paid them out of his own pocket.

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