Camp, Wit, and Slo-Mo Doves: 20 Face-Ripping Facts About 'Face-Off'

Camp, Wit, and Slo-Mo Doves: 20 Face-Ripping Facts About 'Face-Off'

Paramount Pictures

Gang, we’ll just say it: we’re really scared of the notion of a Face/Off sequel. First of all, Adam Wingard is no John Woo. Second, and perhaps most importantly, Face/Off doesn’t deserve even the possibility of getting Independence Day: Resurgence’d. A legendary director at the peak of his game,and actually supported by his major studio? Check. Two iconic actors going all the way with the zaniness while also taking the project seriously? It’s prison visiting time. A perfectly polished script with great characterization, exhilarating twists and turns, and infinitely quotable lines? The damn thing revels so much in its extravagant wittiness, it ends up sounding like a damn Seinfeld episode. So, no, Adam. Just leave it alone.

Face/Off was a perfect storm of otherworldly talent, creative freedom, and studio backing. When it came out, critics even called it the craziest movie ever backed by a major studio. And sure, it’s weird, its concept is silly, whatever. But it is also a superbly impressive action movie. Will we call it one of the best action films ever made? No, we wouldn’t really say it is one of the b— just kidding, of course we would, have you even seen Face/Off? It may not be the best, but it is easily in the top 10. Top 20 at the worst. Also, have we said how we feel about Face/Off? We feel like you’re starting to get it. In this Pictofact, then, we take a look at this masterpiece by the visionary John Woo. We examine its writing, its production, and some peachy nuggets of trivia we didn’t even know until a few minutes ago. It’ll be awesome, cheesy jokes, perfect set pieces, slo-mo doves… Just awesome.

Stallone and Schwarzenegger

CRACKED.COM FACE/OFF IT WAS WRITTEN FOR SYLVESTER STALLONE AND ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER. The pairing might sound stale today, but in the early '90s, that was the writers' original vision. Other pairs considered were Michael Douglas/Harrison Ford, Alec Baldwin/Bruce Willis, and Johnny Depp/Nicolas Cage.

Sources: Pajiba, Cinemablend
Image Credit: MGM, Warner Bros.

Johnny Depp

CRACKED.COM FACE/OFF JOHNNY DEPP WAS DISAPPOINTED IT WASN'T A SPORTS MOVIE. The studio wanted to drop the slash and turn the title into Face-Off, but the writers argued this would make people think it was about hockey. Depp did, in fact, make that mistake, and turned down the movie when he saw he was wrong.

Sources: Cinemablend, Shortlist
Image Credit: TriStar, Mandalay Entertainment

John Woo's Involvement

FACE/OFF IT WASN'T GOING TO BE A JOHN WOO MOVIE. Rob Cohen signed in when it was a Warner Bros. project, but he then moved to Dragonheart when it all went into a limbo. Years later, the writers were watching The Killer and suddenly went, Holy sh*t, Face/Offis a John Woo movie! CRACKED.COM

Sources: Shortlist, Wikipedia
Image Credit: Paramount Pictures

'Con Air'

FACE/OFF THE SHOOT STARTED THE DAY AFTER CON AIR WRAPPED UP. The very first scene shot is Cage (as Archer) talking Archer's wife (played by Joan Allen) after she leaves the shower. This must have been useful for the entire cast and crew, as the movie's plot is explained in that scene. CRACKED.COM

Source: Pajiba
Image Credit: Paramount Pictures, Touchstone Pictures, Jerry Bruckheimer Films

Opening Scene

FACE/OFF THE DARK OPENING WAS JOHN WOO'S IDEA. Face/Off immediately sets the stage with the sepia- toned sequence of Troy trying to kill Archer, and killing his child instead. But the scene was originally a mid-film flashback, and it was Woo who thought of beginning the movie with it instead. CRACKED.COM

Source: Pajiba
Image Credit: Paramount Pictures

Travolta's Chin

CRACKED.COM FACE/OFF JOHN TRAVOLTA OBJECTED TO CALLING HIS CHIN RIDICULOUS. John, the joke is that you're such a famously handsome person, the writers explained to him. That's the joke, that Nicolas Cage doesn't understand how good-looking he now is. Apparently it worked, because Travolta nails the line.

Source: Shortlist
Image Credit: Paramount Pictures


FACE/OFF GINA GERSHON AND NICK CASSAVETES MADE THEIR CHARACTERS INCESTUOUS. John Woo gave his performers a lot of space to create their characters, which included allowing Gershon and Cassavetes to explore their idea of giving their sibling characters a weirdly incestuous vibe. CRACKED.COM

Source: Mental Floss
Image Credit: Paramount Pictures

Mario Boots

CRACKED.COM FACE/OFF PROPS WERE RECYCLED FROM THE SUPER MARIO BROS. MOVIE. The magnetic boots that keep Nicolas Cage stuck to the prison's floor were used a few years earlier by Bob Hoskins and John Leguizamo to hop around. - -

Source: Slant Magazine
Image Credit: Paramount Pictures, Hollywood Pictures

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