6 Weird Offscreen Facts About Great Movies You Can't Un-Know
One of the great things about movies is how they take us to other times and places. Places where Nicolas Cage has the ability to light his head on fire. Places where arm wrestling can reunite a family. Places where stupid little space bears can bring down an empire.
Unfortunately, our terrible real world can sometimes leak into these fantasy worlds and ruin everything. For instance, it's hard to enjoy Ferris Bueller's Day Off when you learn he's being chased by a character played by a real-life pedophile. The movie still works; it just seems like the stakes are suddenly raised way, way too high. With the promise of that being the second-to-last child predator example in this article, here are some other behind-the-scene facts that will ruin some of your favorite films.
The Jurassic Park Raptors Are Voiced by Turtle Orgasms
Think back to the first time you watched Jurassic Park. Picture the pure terror you felt as the velociraptors, creatures you know love nothing more than to rip open young child bellies, stalked the awful, unlikable kids as they cowered in the kitchen. These dinosaurs were a nightmare -- too fast to outrun, too lethal to fight, and too clever to trick. And they can talk to each other! With a few grunts and honks, they can coordinate efficient child belly-ripping attacks as a raptor squad. But you know what might have made that scene less horrifying? If you could somehow go back and time and explain to your younger self that all those honks and grunts are the sounds of adorable turtles fucking.
"Yeah, take it all, I'm gonna wax that dirty shell!"
Velociraptors had unfortunately died out just before Spielberg and his team were able to record what their language sounded like. And anyone who enjoys dinosaur science (so everyone) knows that archaeologists are changing their minds about dinosaur specifics all the time. We used to think they roared. Then we thought they quacked. Well, the sound designer of Jurassic Park, Gary Rydstrom, decided they probably sounded like turtles having sex.
"No, it's cool ... We like when you watch."
Gary first heard the beautiful, haunting sound when he was at Marine World. It was an urgent, reptilian barking perfect for the dinosaur movie he was working on. He rushed to locate the source. His mind was racing -- what could sound so intelligent, yet so primal!? He came upon two horny turtles plowing each other, and instead of saying, "Oh, that's turtle sex. I was hoping it was something I could use for dinosaur sounds," he began to record them. We won't start another tired debate of where the line between turtle pornography and turtle art lies, but if you'd like to have your own at home or at work, here is what the artist himself said about his tortoise sex tape:
"The people there said, 'Would you like to record these two tortoises that are mating?' It sounded like a joke, because tortoises mating can take a long time. You've got to have plenty of time to sit around and watch and record them."
So the next time you're watching Jurassic Park and those scary raptors are speaking to each other, picture a man sitting outside a tortoise enclosure, watching them fuck for a very, very long time.
The Old Man From Up Shouldn't Be Teaching Kids Anything
Up is a movie about an old man and a young boy who, through comical circumstances, fly away in a balloon house together. Over the course of their sky adventures, the two unlikely friends find a way to enrich each other's lives. Russell, the young wilderness scout, teaches Carl, the crotchety old widower, how to open himself up to new experiences. In return, Carl becomes a father figure to a child who clearly doesn't get enough time with his real dad.
"Just one day, he and my turtle were gone, and mom was crying."
It's pretty telling that no one in Russell's life seems too concerned about Russell disappearing into the sky with a strange man for days. (Weeks?) You get the idea that Carl is the best thing this poor lonely boy has going for him in his life, which is a little sad. But it becomes more terrifying than depressing when you learn about the actor who plays Carl.
Carl's voice actor, Ed Asner, is something of a 9/11 truther. And not in a cute way, like how some people believe in Bigfoot or angels. He is sure the government was involved in the terrorist attacks, and he's dedicated a big chunk of his life to proving it. From narrating multiple truther documentaries to writing open letters to "peace and justice leaders" demanding the "full 9-11 truth," it's clear Asner is one of the worst threats to the secret 9/11 masterminds and the absolute worst person in the world to be trapped with at a party.
"HELIUM BALLOONS CAN'T MELT STEEL BEAMS EITHER!"
This is a man who thinks there was a massive conspiracy to kill Americans with airplanes planned by the American government, and they stuck him in a room with a nine-year-old voice actor? In a movie about a house pulled into the sky by balloons? That's the perfect talking point for him to bring up his theory on how building seven was destroyed by a controlled explosion. When Asner got to the part of the script where the dogs start talking, he probably thought it was an ordinary thing for dogs to do.
And speaking of dogs ...
Animals Still Die On Movie Sets (A Lot Of Them, In Fact)
The rights of animal actors have come a long way since that scientific asshole Thomas Edison filmed the electrocution of a real elephant back in 1903. Generally speaking, it's now frowned upon for filmmakers to brutally murder animals, even if it helps motivate John Wick. Animal stunts are performed by expert handlers and their well-trained best friends, which sometimes looks a lot like a guy yanking a horse into the ground, but it's more humane than shooting them both. And besides, it would ruin the movie for everyone if you knew Old Yeller was actually shot in the face by a trembling child.
"Um, spoiler aler- wait, who gets shot? Did you just say I GET SHOT IN THE FACE BY A TREMBLING CHILD!?"
Then again, during the filming of Snow Buddies -- a straight-to-DVD sequel to Air Bud -- five puppies straight-up died on set. FIVE. And no, it wasn't during some elaborate stunt for the final puppy fight scene. They all just managed to catch some crazy virus. Yes, five of the puppy stars of Snow Buddies died of a virus while filming on Vancouver's beautiful Mount Seymour, because there is no god and life is nothing but a cruel staircase of darkness we tumble down toward oblivion.
"Life is a cruel staircase of darkness we tumble down toward oblivion? Um, spoiler alert!?"
The team knew the puppies were sick, yet they bravely tried to work around it. When it was over, five little puppies died for a 64 percent score on Rotten Tomatoes and negative $30 million. Movies mean different things to different people, but everyone can agree that Snow Buddies spent $30 million to kill five puppies.
Speaking of unhappiness and failure, Peter Jackson's The Hobbit also managed to kill 27 animals over the course of filming the trilogy, which seems shocking considering those movies looked like an unskippable PS4 cutscene. Apparently, the main cause of death was neglect and poor conditions, which is sad for the self-evident reason and sad again because it perfectly describes the making of the film itself. Those three garbage movies are like a monument to neglect and poor conditions. The Hobbit trilogy was so awful that hearing they killed 27 animals during the making of them probably had no effect on your opinion.
The Preacher Dad From 7th Heaven Is The Goddamn WORST
As every pious television viewer from the '90s knows, Stephen Collins played Rev. Eric Camden on the hit show 7th Heaven, and he was the glue that held the rambunctious but God-fearing clan together for 11 straight seasons. He kept them on a righteous path through paint huffing, hickeys, loan sharking, prejudice, alcoholism, and even the dangers of premarital sex. There were no demons Rev. Eric couldn't defeat with the Lord's power. Well, except ... and this is a really, really bad one ... pedophilia.
"Damn it! It was the one thing we had over the Catholics."
It turned out that Collins abused three underage girls as young as 11 -- something he confessed to (after, you know, news of it leaked to TMZ). And needless to say, when the actor on your show about the majesty of Jesus Christ confesses to molesting children, it's time to dump those old DVD sets and rethink everything the show ever taught you about paint-huffing and hickeys.
This wasn't some one-off incident, either; the incidents occurred off and on over the course of 20 years, from 1973 to 1994. Again, that's straight from the actor's mouth, insisting that his urges abruptly stopped at that point. Right before he started 7th Heaven, in fact!
"Uh, just a coincidence I'm standing next to the girls."
This revelation caused him to get cut from the movie Ted 2, though we're a little surprised Seth MacFarlane didn't just work in some jokes about it.
The Street Racers In The Fast And The Furious Can't Drive
The Fast And The Furious seems to be about how drag racing prepares you for a life of sophisticated military operations and heists, but as any true fan knows, the series is truly about ... family. Seriously, the bond of a family? That's more powerful than any engine. When you live your life a quarter mile at a time, family is all you have. Fucking family, man. You get it? You get it.
Just in case ...
The first movie of the series -- or what future civilizations will describe as "the framework on which primitive culture was built upon" -- introduces us to Dominic Toretto, a street racing legend played by moaning, baby-headed actor Vin Diesel. He leads a gang -- nay ... a family -- of street racers which includes his girlfriend Michelle Rodriguez and sister Jordana Brewster. It's no exaggeration to say they use their fast cars and driving skills to car-race every single one of their enemies to death. The only problem is, while they were filming The Fast And The Furious, those three actors might have been the three worst drivers on the planet.
"Is the engine supposed to do that?"
Of course, there is suspension of disbelief in every movie. We don't exactly expect Russell Crowe to have a beautiful mind in real life. But there are certain expectations we have, even if you never realized it. For instance, we sort of expect our martial arts stars to know how to kick ass. We figure someone playing a lawyer didn't need help tying their own necktie. And we absolutely expect our racing superheroes to at least know how to drive a car.
Driving is so necessary to most people's lives that it's almost harder to NOT know how to do it, especially after your agent tells you that you got a part in something called The Fast And The Furious. Did they think it was about bicycle racing? Cranky competitive eating? Having violent sex with turtles? That's ridiculous! Turtles have sex very slowly, over the course of many hours! And it sounds like this: HFONK! HFFONK! HFONK!!! HRAAAWWWWW cheecheechee! HFONK! What were we talking about? Oh yeah, fun behind-the-scenes facts that ruin movies. Here's another great one ...
If A Young Actor Is Simulating Sex, Their Mom Is There To Watch
By law, sex involving underage people can be "depicted" onscreen within specific boundaries. To ensure things don't turn into a magnet for depraved sitcom dads, the filming of these scenes of minor sex are heavily monitored. And by "heavily monitored," we mean the underage actors and/or actresses need their parents to be there. On set. Watching every confused, awkward, inexperienced thrust.
For instance, because Christopher Mintz-Plasse was only 17 at the time of his infamous Superbad sex scene, his dear mother was forced to watch the whole thing. The scene is awkward enough as it is, but Mintz-Plasse's mom was not only there when he pulled out a tube of lube, but she has also refused to talk with him about it since. It just lingers there, haunting their relationship, making them each lean ever so slightly away from each other when a commercial for Vaseline comes on their TV.
The only way this could be more uncomfortable is if Stephen Collins was also on set.
As of press time, it's still unknown whether fellow Superbad star Michael Cera's mother had to be on set for his titillating boob punch. Probably? It might skirt the law, since it's not quite simulated sex, but every child should have his mother there for his first boob punch.
"Perfect, honey! Just like we practiced!"
And it's not only goofy love scenes in wacky comedies that require parents to hang around set and watch their children pretend-hump. Sometimes it's even darker. Like rape scenes.
Game Of Thrones, probably the first thing you think of when you hear the phrase "rape scenes," is what we're talking about at the moment. Taking it a step further, the show had an attempted rape scene in season two involving teenage Sansa Stark, who's played by Sophie Turner, who was underage at the time of filming. The crazy thing about shooting that scene wasn't so much that Turner's mom was a few feet away -- she had been watching her daughter film crazy shit for a while at that point -- it also happened to be the day her dad showed up as a surprise. "This is going to be great! Where's Sophie filming today? I'm her dad and I wanted to surprise h- AIIEEEEEEEEE!"
"Forget winter, could no one have mentioned my father is coming?"
And while both of those actors handled it well, like professional turtles fucking into a sound designer's microphone, Julianne Hough had a really hard, veiny time with her mom being on set during a sex scene for Safe Haven. Since Hough was 22 at the time, her mom definitely wasn't required to be there, and she demanded that her mother stay behind her and out of her sight line while she turtled down on her co-star, Josh Duhamel. Which meant Hough's mother was instead locking eyes with the guy her daughter was having pretend-sex with.
At this point, we're kind of surprised any of these people grow up to be well-adjusted human beings.
For more looks behind the curtain, check out 8 Family Movies That Were Horror Films Behind The Scenes and 5 Behind The Scenes Stories That Ruin Great Movies.
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