There are many comedy films that happen to have their moments of improvisational hilarity. But did you know that there are also many films that were never intentionally funny? Or at least not in some of the ways they ended up being? It’s no shock to anyone that many films have bloopers on set. But they’re usually only shown as a special feature “blooper reel” in a DVD extra.
This article is all about those bloopers that made their way into the final cuts of the films. To be totally fair, not all of these bloopers were necessarily caught in time, and purposely put in the final edit…they just happened to slip notice until some geeky fan pointed out the flaws. But for the most part, the bloopers below were noted, and then used.
Why would you bother to use mistakes, or crack-ups in your final film edit? Well because they lead to new discoveries in the characters (even if it’s just the actor messing up their lines). Improvisation really can lead to a new, and wonderful moment in a script. So below are 15 bloopers that made it to the big screen, and made the films ultimately better than they would have been!
15. Droid Smack!
In the latest Star Wars film, Rogue One, there is a reprogrammed droid named K-2SO, played by Alan Tudyk. Though you’ll obviously never see Tudyk on screen, the motion capture, and the voice recording for the droid was all done by him. And hilariously. As most motion capture scenes are shot, the mo-cap actor will still shoot the scenes with the other actors on set, before being removed to make way for the digital pass. The take that you get in Rogue One is actually one of the takes in which Tudyk was still directly working with the actors. The massive droid slap was not scripted at all. And if you look at Cassian (played by Diego Luna), you may notice his reaction to the slap is one of hilarity, and not of pain. Totally caught off guard, Luna began to laugh at the hit, and covered his face.
14. Blow…Your Nose
Some of you may not be so familiar with Woody Allen, or his ridiculous film Annie Hall. But that doesn’t mean we can’t talk about it. After all, everyone knows what cocaine is, so the blooper will still be at least somewhat funny. Allen’s character in the film is pressured to snort some blow, which he is told is worth $2000 per ounce. That is a very expensive sort of cocaine. Especially since this film takes place in the 70s, if I’m not mistaken. Either way, he puts a grain of the stuff, ungracefully up his nose…and then sneezes all over the container holding what is one expensive high. He didn’t mean to sneeze, in reality, but the timing and the reaction from the rest of the cast was so priceless that Allen just couldn’t do without this little tidbit in his film.
13. Midnight Cowboy. Yee Hah!
For those of you who haven’t seen Midnight Cowboy, you’ll most certainly still recognize the iconic phrase “I’m walkin’ here!” As Jon Voight and Dustin Hoffman stroll along a crosswalk on a busy street, they are greeted by a not-so-pleasant cab driver, who just about hits them. This was not part of the actual scene they were shooting. Hoffman stays in character though, and loses his mind on the cabbie. In typical New York fashion, the cab driver puts up a fight as well before driving off, and Hoffman saves the scene. And that’s to put it mildly. Not only did he save the scene…he made it infinitely better. And that famous “walkin’ here” improv has become a catchphrase used in countless films and television shows. A lot of people have never seen this movie, but guaranteed they’ve seen at least one that references it.
12. Wait, Gandalf!
You may remember a hilarious moment in The Fellowship of the Ring, where Gandalf tries to carefully navigate the hobbit hole. The setup looks so incredibly perfect, that it’s hard to believe none of this was planned. The set was designed to look very small in comparison to Ian McKellen, for the illusion of size difference between man and hobbit. Well it really worked well. Once Sir Ian clears the chandelier, and steadies it…he seems to forget where he is, and turns headlong into a support beam. That booming “OH” that comes from his mouth is in no way an act. That’s truly Sir Ian crashing his head against the set. But come on. It worked so perfectly for the film that Peter Jackson just had to have it for the final cut. And it’s one of the funniest parts of the film still.
11. DiCaprio’s Freudian Slip
Back when Leonardo DiCaprio was a child, and was just being made a star due to his role in Titanic, he apparently really had a thing for Kate Winslet. How do we know this? Well, in the famous sketching scene, where Rose asks Jack to draw her wearing only her jewelled necklace, Leo has a bit of a stumble. A little Freudian slip, as it happens. While his character was meant to be taken by Rose’s beauty, his line was to be “over on the couch”. But being in the presence of a naked Kate Winslet in her prime, Leo slipped up and said ‘bed’, before correcting himself to say ‘couch’. This plays perfectly for the awkwardness of the character, and the intense feelings he has. But it’s actually just Leo really wanting to bed Kate Winslet. Can you blame him?
10. Aragorn Is The Man!
It has to be said first that Viggo Mortensen wasn’t even the original person cast in the role of Aragorn. So when it comes to all of the combat training that had to be done for the Lord of the Rings films, Viggo was a bit behind to start. That being said, he probably has the most badass unscripted moments in the whole series (including kicking a helmet so hard in grief that he broke two of his toes). Here, the actor playing Lurtz just couldn’t see well enough in his prosthetics to actually miss Viggo when throwing his knife back at him. But that’s totally fine. Why? Because Viggo is so well adapted to the realm of Middle Earth, that he channeled his inner ranger, and batted that dagger away with his sword…for real! That’s no movie magic (aside from maybe the sound effects).
9. Watch Your Head
If you’ve never noticed this little gem in Star Wars, then allow me to gift you with one of the most hilarious made-it-to-film bloopers. You’ll notice that as the storm trooper on the right makes to walk through the doorway, he hits his head on the door itself (being just that much taller than the other troopers in the scene. Now to be fair here, it’s not like this was a blooper that was caught before the film went to theatres. It was noticed afterward. But George Lucas still made the most of a silly situation, and added sound effects to the now iconic head hit. So if you watch the original version, you’ll not get any effects from it. But if you watch any of the remastered versions, there is a clunk to make up for the pretty hilarious error that no one caught.
8. Matt Damon Laughed At The Fart Jokes For Real (And So Did The Camera Guy)
In Good Will Hunting (perhaps one of the best films that both Robin Williams and Matt Damon have ever done), Williams starts to improvise one of the psych session scenes. This was a more than typical thing for Robin Williams, and everyone knew him well for flying into some sort of tangent, or adding a funny bit here or there. It kept scenes fresh, light, and hilarious. In this case, while talking about super philosophies, and perfection…he brings up one of his wife’s imperfections. He goes on about how his wife used to fart in her sleep…to the point where she would even wake herself up. Matt Damon, not one to turn away some potty humour, genuinely begins to laugh hysterically. And that true laughter (mixed with some camera shake from the camera man’s laughing) has become immortalized through film.
7. The Elegant Princess
So before Anne Hathaway was a total badass, and very frisky feline in the role of Catwoman, she was an awkward teenager who discovered she was a princess, and had to learn how to behave like one. Princess Diaries, while not one of the greatest films to have ever been made, still has an appeal and hilarity that is largely due to Hathaway’s natural comedic talent…and unintended comedic talent. While marching up some bleachers at her school, Hathaway’s character does a little turn, slips on the wet wood, and comes crashing down hard on her ass. Yeah, it must have hurt quite a bit, but still Hathaway’s reaction was a hilarious belly laugh, and the moment was then made famous on screen. The only thing is…Hathaway actually slipped and fell. It just so happened that it worked for her character’s awkwardness, and it was so funny that it had to be kept.
6. Just The Usual Suspects
Who knew that Stephen Baldwin was so hilarious? Apparently all of the main cast of The Usual Suspects. And Benicio Del Toro‘s line read right after the fact didn’t help either. As you can see, the men are at a police lineup. This was meant to be a serious scene. Or at least everyone was meant to keep a straight face while Baldwin did his bit. But take after take, every single one of the actors would crack up. Including Kevin Spacey (who was really the straight guy of the group). After certainly at least a dozen takes, the director (Bryan Singer), just decided to use the footage he had since not one single take was taken seriously. So when you watch this scene, you are seeing actors cracking up, and not characters. But it worked so well for the camaraderie of the characters, that it really does fit the film.
5. Starlord Drops The Ball
Surely most of you have seen Chris Pratt as Starlord in the blockbuster Guardians of the Galaxy. If not…then I’m very surprised. Either way, there is a point in the film where Starlord is asked to hand over an orb. This orb contains the powerful infinity stone (an item which would aid Thanos in ruling the universe). I have to be honest: this blooper does absolutely look planned on Pratt’s part, but he swears that’s not the case. He pulls the orb out, and as he goes to hand it off, it slips from his hand. But adding to the already ridiculous comedic quality of the film, Pratt ducks out of frame, grabs the orb, and presents it again. Keeping exactly in line with the fun-poking edge the film was well known for.
4. Boom Boom Nurse!
Many of you must remember seeing Heath Ledger as the Joker…in a nurse’s outfit. He essentially makes Two-Face here. And then he blows up the hospital where Dent had been recovering. That final blasting of the emergency wing of the hospital seems to take a bit longer, and it seems to be the fault of Joker’s wiring. But that’s not the case. It was the fault of the effects department of The Dark Knight. Ledger just happened to play along with the whole thing, and make the whole thing out to be a faulty detonator. Catching on, and blowing the pyro (though a little late), the effects department is saved by the hilarious reaction of Heath Ledger. The funniest (and saddest) thing about this is that Ledger would have probably kept fiddling in character until someone called cut. He was a different man when this film was being done. But the character can’t be blamed.
3. Dancing With Grace
Ok…this is just priceless. Whether or not you’ve seen the not-so-great film True Lies, it is still just hilarious to watch Jamie Lee Curtis do a little striptease for Arnold Schwarzenegger…and then fall flat before recovering to continue the dance. This was not meant to happen at all. But for some reason, Curtis decided to keep rolling with it, and finished her performance with a bang. The idea that Curtis’ character wouldn’t be able to fully gracefully pull off an erotic dance like this worked just perfectly, so they kept the little slip-up in the final film. Including Arnie’s sudden reaction to the fall. You’ll notice that he makes to go to Curtis, for fear of injury. But as Curtis gets right back to that bed pole, so too does Arnie go back to his nonchalant position on his chair.
2. That’s How To Ask For Another Take!
Some of you may not have seen Lemony Snicket’s: A Series of Unfortunate Events, starring Jim Carrey…and ultimately you don’t have to. But this little blooper here is certainly a great one all the same. Right after the two children in the scene tell their close relative, Count Olaf that their parents had died, he reacts with seemingly little care. And that’s perfectly befitting of the character. But it’s not enough for Carrey, so he asks to do the line again. But he does it in an extravagant way. In character he says it’s no good, will be redone, and he calls “give me the light again”. Everyone thought it was him playing around, until he did the line again. Now that second take of the line isn’t in the final film, but his call to do a second take is…making him seem all the more heartless.
1. Serious Injury
So in Back to the Future: Part II, there is a ridiculous scene where Marty McFly is chased, on hoverboard, by a gang of thugs. Their leader swings a mighty big baseball bat at our hero, but misses. This sends the leader crashing through the doors of the town hall, while his trio of henchman fly up and through the windows above. Now if the safety coordinator were actually watching the whole stunt, he’d have noticed that the rockets they attached to the boards for dramatic effect, caused the trajectory of the stunt performers to shift on the wires. This resulted in one of the stunt women to hit the pillar outside, and then miss her mat inside, when she and her coworkers were dropped from 30 feet. The other two landed on their mats, but she plummeted straight onto concrete. She tried to stand up for herself earlier, but the coordinator swore he knew what he was doing. The stunt performer thankfully didn’t die that day, but she was badly injured.
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