Blogger The Corsair transcribes a section of an interview from Hollywood Life magazine with Sir Anthony Hopkins, who's developed an innovative system for coping with preparation-destroying on-set rewrites:
Lawrence Grobel: You make acting sound simple. Learn your lines, show up, get on with it. Is it really that easy?
Anthony Hopkins: I take the script, sit down with a bunch of pencils and markers and go through it very thoroughly until I feel relaxed inside. I learn the script. Then I go through the preparation, the wardrobe, and I know where I am and what I'm going to do. If they start rewriting on the set I say, 'No, no. I've done my preparation, don't start rewriting it now.' I always make sure that the rewrites come in time so I can learn them. When I worked with Chris Rock on Bad Company, the producer, Jerry Bruckheimer, would rewrite stuff, and I said to him one day, 'Why do you do this? To torture us? I just want to let you know when you send me these new pages I throw them in the trash.' People were shocked: 'You talk to Jerry Bruckheimer that way?' Yeah, screw it. If he sends me pages on the day we're shooting , they go in the trash can.
Lawrence Grobel: Did he send you new pages after that?
Anthony Hopkins: No.
Of course, humiliating a power player like Jerry Bruckheimer is a strategy best employed by an actor of Hopkins' stature. Rumor has it that Jerry O'Connell tried the same stunt on the set of Kangaroo Jack, but instead of easing up on the rewrites, Bruckheimer had him killed, then reassigned his lines to the movie's titular rapping marsupial.
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