Friday, September 16, 2011
How Brad Pitt fought to keep Gwyneth's head in the box in 'Se7en'
by Grady Smith
Fincher fans, this one’s for you!
In the new issue of Entertainment Weekly, Moneyball star Brad Pitt reflects on his life and filmography in a rare in-depth conversation, the first in a series called The EW Interview.
During the chat, Pitt opens up about a particularly frustrating experience early in his career when his favorite scene in Legends of the Fall was cut after the studio determined that it elicited the most negative response from audiences. “Guys, this is exactly why we’re here,” Pitt remembers. “We want to evoke emotion — not favorable opinion, not agreement.”
Pitt claims that he “had no juice,” and couldn’t do anything about the change, but he made sure to not let the same thing happen on his next film, the extra-edgy David Fincher film, Se7en.
With Se7en, I said, “I will do it on one condition — the head stays in the box. Put in the contract that the head stays in the box.” Actually, there was a second thing, too: “He’s got to shoot the killer in the end. He doesn’t do the ‘right’ thing, he does the thing of passion.” Those two things are in the contract. Cut to: Se7en has been put together, and they’ve tested it. They go, “You know, he would be much more heroic if he didn’t shoot John Doe — and it’s too unsettling with the head in the box. We think maybe if it was the dog’s head in the box…”
It’s pretty tough to imagine that harrowing final scene hinging on the discovery of Pitt’s dog’s head, rather than the head of his pregnant wife, but it’s also kind of amusing. Watch the scene here for yourself and pretend!
For more on Brad Pitt, including the truth behind his “rescue” of an extra on the set of World War Z, pick up the new issue of Entertainment Weekly, on stands September 16th