53+ Interesting and Surprising Fun Facts About the Best Brad Pitt Movies
Brad Pitt is one of Hollywood’s most successful actors. And having starred in numerous blockbusters over the decades, Pitt has the box office numbers to prove it. His films total more than $5 billion in revenue at the box office. But how much do fans really know about each of Brad Pitt’s movies?
Let’s take a deep dive into Pitt’s most notable films and uncover some fun facts about each of the productions.
Fun Facts about Brad Pitt’s Movies
William Bradley Pitt was only two weeks out from completing a degree in journalism at the University of Missouri when he decided it was time to relocate to Los Angeles and pursue a career in acting.
While Pitt’s acting career started officially started in 1987 with an uncredited role in Hunk, his big break wouldn’t come until 1992 when he starred in Robert Redford’s A River Runs Through It.
A River Runs Through It
- The film involves a lot of fly fishing. However, none of the cast members have had prior experience. They were all trained by George Croonenberghs, who was best friends with the real life Paul Maclean, who Brad Pitt played in the film.
- While learning to fly fish, Pitt did not have access to any rivers in the area. Because of this, he had to practice on top of a Los Angeles building.
- Pitt auditioned two times before getting the role of Paul Maclean. Dissatisfied with his first audition, he decided to send another tape to the director. Then got him the role.
Legends of the Fall
- This film was initially intended to star Sean Connery and Tom Cruise. As we all know, the starring roles ultimately went to Anthony Hopkins and Brad Pitt who both earned much critical acclaim for their respective performances. The two had such excellent professional chemistry and would reunite four years later in Meet Joe Black.
- Pitt’s love interest in the film was played by Julia Ormond. Fourteen years later, the pair would play father and daughter in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.
- Calgary was selected as the location for filming because the weather is mostly dry. Ironically, heavy rainfall greeted them soon after the start of production.
Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles
- Anne Rice, who published the book in 1976, was initially furious when Tom Cruise was cast as Lestat. But when she eventually watched Cruise’s performance, she was impressed. Rice wrote Cruise an apology and also recorded an endorsement for the film.
- Brad Pitt almost quit the film due to the many discomforts while filming. Hanging upside down for half an hour for makeup, wearing colored contacts, filming almost exclusively in enclosed, dark locations are just a few examples. He did stay when he was told that quitting would cost him $40 million.
- The role played by Christian Slater in the film was originally given to River Phoenix, who died before filming started. Slater donated his salary of $250,000 to a couple of Phoenix’s supported charities.
- To get Pitt to play the part and speak the lines as director Terry Gilliam envisioned, the director had Pitt work with a speech coach. But what really worked was when Gilliam simply took Pitt’s cigarettes away.
- This was the movie that earned Pitt his first win as a supporting actor at the Golden Globes and his first nomination at the Oscars.
- To get the cockeyed look that his character had, Pitt had to wear hand-painted contact lenses for the film.
- The role of Detective Mills played by Brad Pitt was initially offered to Denzel Washington. He turned it down as he found the film very “dark and evil”.
- The scene where Pitt had his arm crash through a car windshield as he was chasing the serial killer John Doe was an actual accident. Stitches were needed but the mishap was ultimately used and incorporated into the script.
- Pitt provided his own ties for his character because he thought Mills should have a poor sense of fashion.
- In the scene where Brad Pitt and Edward Norton were hitting golf balls while drunk, they were in fact drunk. The catering truck took a lot of hits from golf balls that day.
- Brad Pitt did not want his parents to see the highly controversial movie but they wouldn’t hear of it. The actor showed them the chemical burn scene, and this convinced them not to watch.
- The role played by Helena Bonham Carter was earlier offered by the studio to Reese Witherspoon because they wanted a more famous name. Witherspoon found the role too dark and turned it down.
- Six members of the cast are Academy Award winners – Brad Pitt, George Clooney, Matt Damon, Julia Roberts, Casey Affleck and Steven Soderbergh in a cameo. Andy Garcia, Elliot Gould and Don Cheadle have also been nominated for Oscars.
- In order to stay within the production budget, the powerhouse cast all took less than their average salaries.
- It took multiple takes to film the scene where Tess was coming down the stairs. Linus and Rusty (Brad Pitt) were spying on her behind a shrimp cocktail. Pitt ended up eating 40 shrimp by the time the scene was done.
- Bruce Willis appears as himself in the film alongside Julia Roberts. However, his name is not included in the credits.
- While on production in Italy, George Clooney and Brad Pitt went out jogging and got caught in the rain. The doorman at their hotel mistook them for vagrants and did not allow them back in.
- In the movie, Brad Pitt wears a necklace version of the wedding ring he had with Jennifer Aniston, who was then still his wife.
- It took six months of workouts for Brad Pitt to get in perfect shape for his role as Achilles. This included having to quit smoking, which Pitt found most difficult.
- In their famous duel, Brad Pitt and Eric Bana did not use stunt doubles. They made a deal to pay each other $50 for every accident light hit and $100 for a heavy one. After the scene, Pitt paid $750 to Bana and Bana owed Pitt nothing.
- While playing the role of Achilles in the film, Pitt ironically tore his Achilles tendon during production.
Mr. & Mrs. Smith
- The original Mrs. Smith was supposed to be Nicole Kidman. When she exited from the project, Pitt dropped out as well. He returned only after Angelina Jolie confirmed her participation.
- In the midst of filming, Pitt took a 3-month leave to work on Ocean’s Twelve.
- Brad Pitt was married to Jennifer Aniston during production. They later got divorced and Pitt eventually married his co-star Jolie. Aniston later dated Vince Vaughn who was also one of the supporting actors in the film.
- The scene where Matt Damon walks on the streets of London was actually filmed while he was shooting another movie, The Bourne Ultimatum.
- This film marked one of Bernie Mac’s last movie roles before he passed away in 2008.
- At the roulette wheel, Mr. Weng picks his three lucky numbers. He chose 11, 12 and 13, which is an homage to the titles of the three movies in the Ocean’s trilogy.
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
- The film was released in 2008 but development for it began back in 1994.
- The lead role was originally intended for Tom Cruise and Steven Spielberg was being eyed as the director at one point. The respective jobs of course went to Brad Pitt and David Fincher, who had previously collaborated in Se7en and Fight Club.
- Makeup for Pitt took as long as 5 hours each day for the scenes where he was very old.
- Despite it being a Hollywood production, only about a third of the dialogue in the film is in English. There were more French and German lines, plus some Italian as well. Interestingly, Pitt speaks fluent German but his characters do not have any German lines.
- Quentin Tarantino was about to give up on the project when they couldn’t find anyone to play Colonel Hans Landa. When Christoph Waltz auditioned, Tarantino immediately found him a perfect fit. Waltz went on to win the Oscar as a supporting actor.
- The word “inglourious” is etched onto the stock of Brad Pitt’s gun in the movie.
- In the movie, Oakland Athletics appears to have visited eight ballpark stadiums. In reality, only Dodger Stadium was used for all the scenes.
- Most of the scouts shown in the movie were portrayed by real Major League Baseball scouts. When Steven Soderbergh was still the director, he wanted baseball players to play themselves as well. Bennett Miller took over directing and hired actors as baseball players.
- Moneyball was one of the two films nominated for Best Picture at the 2012 Oscars that Pitt both starred in and produced. The other one was The Tree of Life.
World War Z
- Among all of Brad Pitt’s movies to date, World War Z would be the highest grossing film to date, with worldwide box office earnings of $540 million.
- One of the biggest reasons Pitt took on the role is because he wanted a film that his boys would be allowed to see even before turning 18. Also, his boys enjoyed zombie movies.
- During production, more than 80 prop weapons were to be used in scenes in Hungary and were confiscated in Budapest. The weapons were ultimately released when requisite permits were presented.
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
- This movie would earn Brad Pitt his first Academy Award for acting, plus a slew of other awards including the Golden Globes, the BAFTA and the Screen Actors Guild.
- Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt worked together for the first time in this film, and Quentin Tarantino dubbed them “the most exciting star dynamic duo since Robert Redford and Paul Newman.”
- In what would be his most personal work to date, Tarantino says he spent more than five years working on the screenplay for this movie.
- The film title is Latin for “to the stars” and is short for “per aspera ad astra”, a popular phrase that translates to “through adversity to the stars”.
- This is the first time that Brad Pitt and director James Gray worked together after two projects that did not push through. The first was The Gray Man where Pitt dropped out. The second was The Lost City of Z, which Pitt again turned down but stayed on as executive producer.
- Tommy Lee Jones appears in the film wearing the same space outfit as he wore in Space Cowboys in 2000.
- Bullet Train was directed by David Leitch, who was Pitt’s stunt double in early films like Fight Club, Ocean’s Eleven and Troy. Pitt also appeared in a brief cameo in Leitch’s second directed film Deadpool 2.
- Multiple references to the British children’s series Thomas the Tank Engine were made by Tangerine throughout the film.
- Bullet Train involves a lot of action but according to Greg Rementer, stunt coordinator for the movie, Brad Pitt did almost all of his stunts without a double.
Wondering what’s next for Brad Pitt? Fans can expect to see him next in the Jon Watt’s directed thriller Wolfs, where Pitt co-stars with George Clooney and Amy Ryans. The movie is currently filming and will premiere on Apple. Though there has been no release date announced yet.