Everyone knows who Clint Eastwood is now after decades in the business and making some of the best movies around. However, we very nearly missed out on a lifetime of Clint altogether, when he was almost cut entirely from his first ever film.
Clint Eastwood movies range from badass action movies, to Westerns, to more sombre drama movies, but one thing’s for sure, they’re all pretty damn good. He’s won multiple Oscars, both as a director and an actor, and even has plans to be the oldest filmmaker in the world one day.
All that could have been very different, though, had Eastwood been cut from his first role. In the book Conversations with Clint: Paul Nelson’s Lost Interviews with Clint Eastwood: 1979-1983 (via LA Review of Books), Eastwood discussed the situation.
Nelson revealed to Eastwood that he watched the monster movie Revenge of the Creature one night and was shocked to find Eastwood was missing from the version of the film he watched.
“Nothing’s sacred anymore. They take that fabulous scene out of the picture. That was my very first part. A four-liner or something like that. I remember it was Jack Arnold directing and William Alland was the producer. Alland called me into his office and read me the scene and gave me the part. And that was it. He said, ‘I’ll take you down and we’ll meet the director,'” Eastwood recalled.
“I walked on the set and the director said, ‘What the hell is this? I told you I don’t want to do that goddamn scene! Who’s this guy?’ [laughs] I thought I was going to get punched – he was screaming and yelling – or else I was just going to wilt to the floor. Probably the latter. Alland made me realise it wasn’t anything against me – the director just didn’t want the scene in the movie, so he didn’t see any reason for shooting it and thought they should cut it out,” he added.
“The producer won the argument. He just said, ‘That’s in. Shoot it first thing in the morning.’ That was the final word,” Eastwood continued. “But it was a hell of a way to start your acting career: walk on a set and you know that the director hates the scene. Therefore you know he hates you.”
Thankfully, the scene remains in most versions of the movie, even if some versions do cut it out. For more from legendary actors, check out our list of the best Arnold Schwarzenegger movies, or look at all the new movies on the way this year.