Brad Pitt Was Allegedly Unpleasant to Work With in a Movie That Tom Cruise Rejected, Even Wanted to Quit After the First Table Read

Working with Brad Pitt during this 1994 film was reportedly quite difficult, which, honestly, isn't surprising, given his reputation in the industry.

Brad Pitt Was Allegedly Unpleasant to Work With in a Movie That Tom Cruise Rejected, Even Wanted to Quit After the First Table Read

SUMMARY

  • Despite Pitt's undeniable talent, Zwick encountered numerous hurdles, making the filmmaking process a challenging task while filming Legends of the Fall.
  • While Pitt's on-screen performance dazzles, his behavior off-screen posed challenges for those involved.
  • The truth is, the character's emotional demands pushed Pitt to his limits, causing him to become overwhelmed when required to display deeper emotions in certain scenes.
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In a recent memoir by a member of the film fraternity, director Ed Zwick, interesting details regarding the megastar Brad Pitt emerged. The incidents highlighted occurred during the production of Legends of the Fall, shedding light on the difficulties faced by the director, especially while dealing with Pitt. Despite Pitt’s undeniable talent, Zwick encountered numerous hurdles, making the filmmaking process a challenging task.

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Brad Pitt in Legends of the Fall
Brad Pitt in Legends of the Fall

Brad Pitt’s Challenging Behavior During the Making of Legends of the Fall

In Ed Zwick’s recent memoir, Hits, Flops, and Other Illusions: My Fortysomething Years in Hollywood, published by Vanity Fair, the curtains are drawn back to reveal the reality of Brad Pitt behind the scenes. While Pitt’s on-screen performance dazzles, his behavior off-screen posed challenges for those involved. The director spoke about the making of Legends of the Fall in his book, where he recounts Tom Cruise initially dismissing the movie at its outset.

Brad Pitt and Anthony Hopkins in Legends of the Fall (1994).
Brad Pitt and Anthony Hopkins in Legends of the Fall (1994).

Following that despite the director’s initial relief upon finding Tristan Ludlow in Brad Pitt, shortly after the first table read, the actor’s agency called to inform him that the actor was considering quitting. He explained,

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“It fell to [producer] Marshall [Herskovitz] to talk Brad off the ledge,–It was the first augury of the deeper springs of emotion roiling inside Brad. He seems easygoing at first, but he can be volatile when riled, as I was to be reminded more than once as shooting began and we took each other’s measure.”

The truth is, that the character’s emotional demands pushed Pitt to his limits, causing him to become overwhelmed when required to display deeper emotions in certain scenes. The relentless pushing from the director aggravated Pitt’s stress.

“Sometimes, no matter how experienced or sensitive you are as a director, things just aren’t working,– he would get edgy whenever he was about to shoot a scene that required him to display deep emotion.–His ideas about Tristan differed from mine,–Brad had grown up with men who held their emotions in check; I believed the point of the [‘Legends of the Fall’] novel was that a man’s life was the sum of his griefs. […] Yet the more I pushed Brad to reveal himself, the more he resisted. So, I kept pushing and Brad pushed back.”

Brad Pitt in Legends of the Fall
Brad Pitt in Legends of the Fall

The director admitted to pushing Pitt beyond his comfort zone, resulting in frequent clashes on set due to their differing ideas. However, both shared a common passion for the story being told and a determination to deliver their best in every aspect, which ultimately kept them united.

One Major Fallout Between Ed Zwick and Brad Pitt

Brad Pitt has a history of attempting to quit movies early on due to feeling pushed beyond his limits. He has openly shared his struggles with nervousness and anxiety throughout his career. Pitt has recounted multiple instances where the pressure and demands of a role became overwhelming, leading him to consider quitting.

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Despite his talent, Pitt has been candid about the challenges he faces in managing his anxiety and how it affects his work in the film industry.

Legends of the Fall
Legends of the Fall

One major fallout that happened on the sets of Legends of the Fall, between Ed Zwick and Pitt was,

“I was angry at Brad for not trusting me to influence his performance. Also for the reluctance he’d shown after the first table read. Who knows, I might even have been acting out my own inability to be vulnerable. But Brad wasn’t about to give in without a fight. In his defense, I was pushing him to do something he felt was either wrong for the character, or more ’emo’ than he wanted to appear onscreen. — And this wasn’t the last time it happened. Eventually the crew grew accustomed to our dustups and would walk away and let us have it out. ‘We hate it when the parents fight,’ said one.”

Despite being described as difficult, Brad Pitt’s talent is unquestionable. While he may experience first-day nervousness, it never truly impacts his performance on screen.

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Legends of the Fall is available on Netflix to stream.

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Written by Sampurna Banerjee

Articles Published: 952

Sampurna Banerjee, an ardent enthusiast of pop culture and movies, pours her passion into her role as a writer for FandomWire. With a penchant for Marvel, DC, and sitcoms, she has contributed over 400 articles, staying up-to-date to the entertainment industry's latest buzz. Moreover, she's penned over 300 articles for Animated Times and shared her work across several Instagram pages. Currently she is pursuing a Bachelor's degree in Computer Science from Calcutta University.