Four Cameos You Missed of Celebrity Body Parts
As you know if you were in a movie theater when everyone asked in unison, “Did Rami Malek really just show up two hours and 30 minutes into Oppenheimer?” a celebrity cameo is a fun way to add another drop to the cinematic roller coaster. In fact, it can be even more fun to only use a part of a celebrity that the audience is guaranteed not to recognize. It’s like a little inside joke between the filmmakers that nobody else knows, or in the case of Judd Apatow’s dick, is traumatized by until years later.
Yes, we said “Judd Apatow’s dick.” Keep reading.
Christina Hendricks’ Hand Is on the ‘American Beauty’ Poster
The cover of the DVD for American Beauty, depicting a woman’s hand holding a rose against her stomach, is almost as famous as the movie itself, but did you ever wonder whose hand and stomach that is? It would make the most sense for it to be one of the young leads, Thora Birch or Mena Suvari, or hey, maybe Annette Bening. She keeps it tight.
Assuming you can read subheaders, you already know the answer. Christina Hendricks was only 24 in 1999 and had yet to appear in any movies or TV shows when she agreed to what she thought was a routine modeling job. Those words usually end in disaster, but for Hendricks, it ended with her right hand becoming world famous. (The stomach belongs to an actress named Chloe Hunter because, for some reason, “we did different versions of her hand and her stomach, and my stomach and her hand, and my hand and both.”)
“It was just a plain, ol’ gig,” she later said. “I probably got paid a hundred bucks or something. I was just thrilled to have a job. I didn't know what American Beauty was going to be. And then I finally saw it and was like, ‘Hey, that’s my hand!’” She never thought to bring it up until 2019, in an Instagram post that prompted Mad Men co-star January Jones to demand, along with the rest of us, “How come I didn’t know this?”
James Cameron’s Hands Are in ‘Titanic’
We hate to ruin the movie magic for you, but Kate Winslet didn’t actually lie naked on a couch for the entire time it would have taken Leonardo DiCaprio to draw her like one of his French girls in the biopic of history’s most famous boat. In fact, Leo wasn’t the one drawing her at all. We know, we know: Next we’ll be telling you the ship didn’t really sink (and really, no one can prove that).
To create the scene, Winslet was photographed on the couch (in a bathing suit, thank you very much), which director James Cameron later used as a reference as he filmed his own hands sketching her. This ended up creating a minor continuity problem because Cameron is left-handed but DiCaprio isn’t, so Cameron made two drawings, one from a photo of Winslet lying in the opposite direction that was filmed and then flipped, and one the right way for all other scenes featuring the drawing. Who knows what Leo was sketching. Probably also boobs.
Mel Gibson Is All Over ‘The Passion of the Christ’
Okay, so it turns out it’s easy to fake hands, but that wasn’t the only reason Mel Gibson decided to cast himself as the hands that nail Jesus to the cross in his magnum opus/torture porno The Passion of the Christ. Gibson claimed it was because he considered himself “first in line for culpability” for the death of Jesus, though it really seems like it was the Romans. Still, it was basically Catholic Guilt: The Movie, so at least he’s consistent.
His theology gets a little muddy, however, in all the other places Gibson’s body parts show up in the film. He becomes a literal stand-in for Jesus in a shot of the Lord’s foot in the scene where he’s approached by Mary Magdalene, and it’s his arms that tie the noose that killed Judas. So he’s part of the mass of humanity whose sins Jesus died for… but also Jesus… but also Judas.
For the love of, well, you know, don’t explain this one to us, Gibson.
Judd Apatow’s Dick Is in ‘Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping’
Arguably the most outrageous scene in a movie that contains both coprophagia and Seal getting attacked by wolves takes place in a limousine where Andy Samberg’s character in Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping is arguing with his former bandmates while a series of escalating nudity presses itself against his window. The coup de grace is a faceless, flaccid penis, which Samberg’s character reluctantly but valiantly signs. Obviously, we don’t have a clip of this one, but like… you could find it.
It would be reasonable to assume the penis belonged to an anonymous extra who really needed the extra money, but after one cast member claimed it was producer Judd Apatow, several others and even Apatow himself confirmed it was his dick. It certainly explains why Samberg is so weirdly chill about handling it, a situation that would be very uncomfortable for both parties if it had been a stranger penis. Apatow explained that he “just felt like I had asked so many people to get naked for comedy that in this instance I should give back,” conveying an uncharacteristically complete lack of understanding of what moviegoing audiences want.