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Clint Eastwood let Jeff Bridges break this rule for his movies

Clint Eastwood movies follow a couple of particular rules, and Jeff Bridges got permission from the man himself to break one early in his acting career.

Jeff Bridges in The Big Lebowski

While producing some of the best movies ever made, Clint Eastwood has a particular reputation in Hollywood. Basically, he gets what’s needed, and moves on – unneeded takes are not in his wheelhouse. A young Jeff Bridges challenged the icon on this, and survived to tell the tale.


The incident happened on underrated comedy movie Thunderbolt and Lightfoot. Bridges explained it all to Entertainment Weekly. “Clint was very calm. He had a great sense of humor and didn’t like to do too many takes,” Bridges recalled. “He didn’t place too much preciousness on things, which is a cool way of working. I, on the other hand, like to work it a little more than he does. That’s my style.”

Bridges tried his luck, hoping the legend behind some of the best Westerns of all time would give him some leeway. “I remember going up to [Michael Cimino, director] after one scene and saying, ‘I have an idea, can we try it again?’ And he said, ‘I’ll have to ask the boss’, meaning Clint,” he says. “And Clint said, ‘Yeah, give the kid another shot’, which was nice.”

Remember, this was 1974. Decades before Bridges played The Dude or starred in science fiction movie Tron or any of his most notable performances. He was just an upstart at this point. Needless to say, he got off lightly from Eastwood. Must have caught the Dirty Harry star on a good day!

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Famously, Matt Damon wasn’t so lucky, getting put down by Eastwood while filming sports movie Invictus. Doesn’t matter who you are, if the Man With No Name wants to move on, production is moving on. To be fair, it’s a philosophy that’s served Eastwood very well, given his career. Maybe there’s something to just being good enough!

We have a guide to The Old Man season 2 release date if you want more Bridges in your life. He spoke about whether he’d do The Big Lebowski 2 as well. Our new movies guide will tell you what else to watch out for.