Not everything you see on screen is straight from the minds of a writer. Sometimes, even the director’s input can fall by the wayside.
The greatest actors are masters of their craft and know what they’re doing. Below are ten great examples of ideas suggested by actors that ended up in their movies.
10. Robert Downey Jr (Avengers: Endgame)
Robert Downey Jr wanted Tony Stark to go without a word. The screenwriters debated furiously over Stark’s last lines as he lay dying surrounded by his friends.
However, it was Downey who eventually suggested Stark go quietly. The lasting impression is much more impactful.
9. Jason Isaacs (Harry Potter)
Jason Isaacs disliked the original costume for Lucius Malfoy.
Describing Malfoy as a racist and eugenicist, Isaacs didn’t think a pinstripe suit and short black and white hair encapsulated that.
He changed Malfoy’s appearance, giving us the famous cane and long white hair.
8. Leonard Nimoy (Star Trek)
Imagine a world where Spock’s weapon of choice is a knockout punch.
Leonard Nimoy couldn’t and instead invented a move he thought fitting of Star Trek’s era. He came up with the now-iconic Vulcan nerve-pinch.
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7. Chris Hemsworth (Avengers: Endgame)
One weird plot hole in Avengers: Endgame would’ve seen Lebowski Thor go to Regular Thor halfway through the movie, somehow.
Rather than giving us a random Rocky-esque montage, Hemsworth had a lot of fun playing the newer version of Thor and kept him like that throughout the whole film.
6. Jack Nicholson (One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest)
Jack Nicholson and director Milos Forman disagreed over the reasons beyond the patients’ revolt.
Forman’s original idea was simply to have all the patients crazy from the start. It was Nicholson who insisted that his character be implicit in the cause of the rebellion.
5. Mike Myers (Shrek)
Shrek was almost going to be envisioned with a Canadian accent. Mike Myers even went so far as to record all his lines with the accent.
However, upon seeing a rough cut, he demanded to re-record his lines with the now-iconic Scottish accent.
4. Kurt Russell (Escape From New York)
Whatever the reason was, Kurt Russell really wanted to wear an eye patch.
Snake Plissken was never supposed to wear one, but Russell insisted and director John Carpenter was instantly onboard with the idea.
Another example of actors knowing what’s up.
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3. Johnny Depp (Pirates of the Caribbean)
Johnny Depp has received great acclaim for his performance as Captain Jack Sparrow.
Originally, Sparrow was supposed to be a regular old pirate and that’s what the studio wanted.
At the risk of his own job, Depp played the character the way he wanted – brain-damaged.
2. Anna Kendrick (Pitch Perfect)
Although ‘Cups’ eventually went on to become a global sensation, it wasn’t the first choice for the song.
The intention was to use ‘I’m A Little Teapot’. However, Anna Kendrick auditioned with the ‘Cups’ song and it stuck.
1. Samuel L. Jackson (Snakes on a Plane)
Snakes on a Plane has always been a ludicrous title, but that was part of the appeal. Even so for Sam Jackson, who said the title was what got him to sign on.
When the studio tried to change the title to ‘Pacific Air Flight 121’, Jackson got involved and stopped them from changing the title.