4 Iconic Movie Roles (That Broke Their Actors' Minds)

Apparently trying to unsee a cartoon is the real challenge.
4 Iconic Movie Roles (That Broke Their Actors' Minds)

Acting can be many things to many people. It can be a form of therapy, helping a person work through some stuff. It can be a learning school, guiding an actor to better understand other people. Heck, it can even be a kind of Matrix training program: One day you don’t know how to do gun-fu, the next day you do. And you get paid for literally all of it. Acting makes all other jobs sound totally lame.

Sometimes, however, acting can go the way of disaster, like the countless horrible stories we’ve covered involving the Cult of Method Acting. The following entries aren’t that extreme, but it does make the case for how a story or a character can sometimes catch an actor by surprise, and mess them up for a good while after.

Will Poulter Was Scared Of The Sun After Filming Midsommar

Ah, Midsommar. The Ari Aster folk horror movie where a Swedish fertility cult helps a young woman get over her terrible boyfriend by burning him alive in a bear suit. It’s the movie Nicolas Cage wanted The Wicker Man to be (no jokes). It’s the movie that disturbed so many people, no one seemed to be quite sure what they were really upset about (for us, it was the missed opportunity of putting Terrible Boyfriend in that bear suit sooner). 


The fertility ritual would’ve been way more bonkers.

One of the wildest and creepiest parts of this movie is that the horror so arrogantly happens in broad daylight. We’re not used to having our scaries play out during the day, and Aster effectively uses these ‘sunny folk vibes’ to expose the darker motivations of both human nature and character in this story about culture clashes and bad breakups. For actor Will Poulter — who plays Mark, the proverbial fool in the film — this daytime horror movie messed him up for some time after. As in, the guy literally became scared of going outside during the day.


We bet he’s not too fond of the color yellow anymore, either.

Said the actor himself: “After Midsommar, I feel a little bit scared of sunlight and being out amongst nature during the day. Which is really screwed up; to make people scared of that is some feat.”

This may sound silly to someone who hasn’t seen the movie, but we’d probably be kinda messed up, too, if we had to play a character who got skinned alive by people drinking sunshine and killing both bears and boyfriends.

Bob Hoskins Kept On Seeing Toons Long After Filming Who Framed Roger Rabbit?

Who Framed Roger Rabbit? is an absolute classic of a film that blends animation with live-action both brilliantly and beautifully. Yes, we can indeed wax lyrical about this film all the livelong day, and probably have another sleepless night thanks to the horror of seeing our beloved Doc doing this:

Now to us, that may all seem like one hell of a hoot on set, what with a bunch of grown-ups collectively pretending to see and interact with a couple of cheeky cartoons. And they do it so well! Maybe a little too well, it turns out, because Bob Hoskins said he had a rough time trying to unsee those toons after the cameras stopped rolling. 

"I think I went a bit mad while working on that. Lost my mind. The voice of the rabbit was there just behind the camera all the time, you just had to know where the rabbit would be at all times, and Jessica Rabbit and all these weasels. The trouble was, I had learnt how to hallucinate. If you do that for eight months it becomes hard to get rid of.”

Oh, boy. Well, he probably kept on seeing these toons in, like, his kitchen making toast or whatever. Nothing publicly embarrassing … right?

"I went to this one do (event) where I got talking to a very country lady with a big hat and there was this weasel in her hat."

Buena Vista Pictures Distribution

Right. On the upside, we guess he never felt alone. So that’s nice. To prepare for his role, Hoskins hung out with his young daughter who, at the time, had an imaginary friend. According to him he observed the “two” of them, and in doing so taught himself how to “hallucinate” and actually see the toons in the scenes with him. You have to remember that, back then, there were no green screens and tennis balls hanging from the ends of broomsticks and whatnot to show the actors where the CG characters will eventually go. It was all done old school, baby. You had to pretend there was an adorable little talking shoe making terrifying sounds while it melts into a bubbling acid vat. 

Unfortunately for Hoskins, he did not quite bank on those talking shoes sticking around afterwards. Luckily he got some medical help, and a bit of good rest. Word is he only ever once heard a whimpering voice saying “Patty-cake” after that.

Playing Marcia Clarke in The People v. O.J. Simpson Made Sarah Paulson Addicted To Smoking

American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson is arguably the true crime that needed a dramatization of its subject matter the least. Sure, the acting and production were decent enough, but the show didn’t tell us anything the entire world doesn’t already know about the horrible killing of Nicole Brown Simpson. Alas, people sure love seeing stuff about O.J. We predict a movie and another short series for some reason before the end of the decade.

A standout performance was that of Sarah Paulson who played Marcia Clarke, the deputy district attorney who got involved with the case. Paulson won numerous awards for her portrayal of Clarke, and while she had mostly good things to say about the experience — she even kept a couple of souvenirs afterwards, including the character’s perfume and engraved lighter — there was one not-so-nice outcome of playing the chain-smoking deputy DA.

It seems Paulson developed a bit of an addiction to those ciggies she’s joking about because she didn’t pretend. She actually smoked them, even though she says she never smokes “in life.” Yeah … that’s not how smoking works, love. 


Come to think of it, the actress has played many a smoking character throughout her career that mostly consists of American Horror Story seasons. Here she is in American Horror Story: Murder House:


And here she is smoking in American Horror Story: Asylum:


Also here in American Horror Story: Hotel:


And here she is in American Horror Story: Return to Roanoke, presumably after her 500th cigarette


She not only seems to smoke in almost all her AHS seasons, but given the fact Ryan Murphy did both AHS as well as The People v O.J. Simpsons, we’re starting to wonder if the director is good for Paulson’s physical health.

Michael B. Jordan Struggled With Depression After Playing Killmonger In ‘Black Panther’

There are a lot of memorable things about the 2018 movie Black Panther, and Michael B. Jordan’s portrayal of Erik Killmonger most certainly is one of them. Jordan managed to elevate the Marvel antagonist to an absolute standout level. The dude slayed, is what he did.

Total goosebumps. Jordan played the hell out of Killmonger — so much so that it took him some time to get the character out of his system. 

"It was one of those things that I didn't know what was going on. I never was in a character for that long of a period of time and was, I guess, that dark, that lonely, that painful. So coming out of it, I thought, 'Oh yeah, business as usual. I can just go back home, I'll cut my hair off, and everything will be back to normal.'"

Things didn’t go back to normal, though, and Jordan ended up doing a month of serious therapy to deal with that dark and painful place his character had lived in. 

"Once I got finished wrapping the movie, it took me some time to talk through how I was feeling and why I was feeling so sad and like a little bit depressed."

Therapy ended up helping him more than just get over Killmonger — Jordan said he actually learned how to talk through his feelings in general, instead of just shutting others out. 

That’s some true and total King vibes, right there.

Zanandi is on Twitter and also on that other platform.

Top Image: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

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