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“When in California, get really hammered”: James McAvoy Landed $278.5M Movie Role as He Was Too Drunk to Say No to M. Night Shyamalan

"When in California, get really hammered": James McAvoy Landed $278.5M Movie Role as He Was Too Drunk to Say No to M. Night Shyamalan

James McAvoy has achieved immense success in his long career in Hollywood. He initially appeared in the horror film, The Pool, which was among his first significant feature roles. Since then, the actor has built an impressive portfolio, including the esteemed BAFTA Rising Star Award in his trophy cabinet. 

James McAvoy - Split (2016)
James McAvoy – Split (2016)

McAvoy made a mark in the industry with his role in the X-Men: First Class. Besides, his remarkable performances in The Last Kind of Scotland and Atonement earned him two BAFTA Award nominations. Previously, McAvoy revealed how he landed his iconic role in M. Night Shyamalan’s Split.

Also Read: “It’s sweaty and uncomfortable”: Filming S*x Scenes With Angelina Jolie in $342M Film Was A Nightmare for X-Men Star James McAvoy

James McAvoy Was Drunk When He Met The Director

During an interview with The Guardian, James McAvoy shared his recollection of landing the role in Split. The actor recounted a memorable first encounter with Shyamalan at a party where they both had a few drinks. Despite the comical circumstances, the meeting proved to be fruitful for McAvoy in securing the coveted role.

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“There was a big party, you couldn’t turn around without bumping into somebody off the telly,” McAvoy recalled. “My mate Jesse was playing miniature golf in the middle of it. We were getting particularly drunk, and then I saw M. Night Shyamalan. He goes: ‘You’re James McAvoy!’ And I said: ‘You’re M. Night Shyamalan! What do I call you?’ I was very drunk.”

James McAvoy
James McAvoy

While alcohol can cause some people to act out of character, it did not hinder the actor’s chances of securing the role, for which he was fortunate. Ultimately, things worked out in his favor.

“The minute I f***ing set foot in California I get a job that is one of the most interesting roles I’ve ever played. The moral of the story is: when in California, get really hammered,” McAvoy added.

Also Read: “That’s something I’ll never achieve”: James McAvoy Freaked Out Before Starring in Angelina Jolie’s $342 Million Action Packed Movie ‘Wanted’

McAvoy Showed His Different Personalities In Split

Split’s plot focuses on three teenage girls who get kidnapped by McAvoy’s character. The character is shown to have a staggering 23 known personalities. However, his 24th personality, called The Beast, is a fearsome force. The girls are cautioned about the immense power and terror of The Beast as he holds them captive underground. Their only hope is to run for their life before The Beast unleashes his fury.


Written and directed by Shyamalan, the film features Anya Taylor-Joy, Haley Lu Richardson, and Jessica Sula in the lead roles as the three abducted young women. The film received widespread acclaim, with critics praising McAvoy’s performance. The movie raked in $278.5 million against a reported budget of just $9 million. 

James McAvoy
James McAvoy in Split

Split’s success ultimately paved the way for the 2019 film Glass, which brought the original cast back and merged the characters from Shyamalan’s Unbreakable universe.

Split is available for streaming on Paramount+. It can also be rented or purchased on Google Play and Amazon Instant Video. 

Also Read: “Sad that awards are not all about talent”: James McAvoy Not Getting an Oscar For ‘Atonement’ After He Denied to Follow Forest Whitaker’s Footsteps Upsets Fans

Source: Cheatsheet

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Written by Vishal

Vishal Kawadkar is a seasoned writer specializing in writing engaging and informative content on various topics. He is a cinephile with a keen interest in sci-fi and thriller movies and TV shows. With an eye for detail, Vishal likes offering readers a fresh perspective on the latest trends and developments.