Has anyone ever had one of those days when they just phoned in their work, so to speak, and it still came off as passable and even impressed some people? The ability to please others with little to no preparation on your part is something that many actors have attempted throughout the years, and some of them have done quite well at it. Of course, some have tripped over their own feet, metaphorically-speaking, since not being prepared for a role can be disastrous since if you don’t know your lines or how to hit your mark or where you’re supposed to be standing it’s likely that a director will become a bit perturbed and start thinking of who else they can get for the role. But strangely enough, some actors have made this work in a way that has been nothing short of outstanding since their overall demeanor and the skill that they utilize in a role can make up for the lack of preparation that has to be a bit of a struggle for the other actors around them. One might think that not being prepared for a role would be the beginning of the end for an actor, but some have created a reputation around it at times.
Here are a few actors that were notorious for their lack of preparation at times.
5. Orson Welles was given his lines off-camera.
One might think this would be kind of irritating since it could possibly appear that the movement of an actor’s eyes might betray just what they were doing when reading off of cue cards or anything else that was being used to deliver their lines. It might have been that any actors doing this were good at their craft and could read the lines and then deliver them without any visible hiccup in the movie, but at the same time, this is something that would be kind of hard on the crew since one or more people would need to be designated to hold the delivery system in order for the actor to see what came next.
4. Marlon Brando didn’t like to rehearse.
Brando was kind of a male diva on set it’s been said as he didn’t enjoy rehearsals and he would often show up when he felt like it in order to start filming. It doesn’t feel fair to say anything too negative about the deceased actor, but it’s obvious that the act of having to place his lines where he could see them off-camera was kind of a pain in the backside. He hid it well enough since every time he was looking in another direction it might have felt that he was staring off into the distance for one reason or another, but he was actually looking at his lines to know what he had to say next.
3. Jeremy Irons used the voice of a character he’d already played in The Lion King.
Claus Van Bullow from Reversal of Fortune was the basis for the voice of Scar, so the lack of prep time didn’t really fall on Jeremy’s shoulders at this point, and it wasn’t entirely detrimental either since it worked in a great way since the voice of Scar is one of the more iconic parts of the animated movie. In fact, it sounds fair to say that there’s a debate over who did the part of Scar the best, Jeremy Irons or Chiwetel Ejiofor. To be certain, both men are extremely talented, but the fact that Jeremy did the voice first kind of stands out to many fans, while Chiwetel’s contribution is great but had to exist in the shadow of Irons’ villain.
2. Paul Bettany had never watched a Marvel movie before starring in one.
This lack of preparation didn’t really do anything to harm Bettany’s reputation and realistically he was great as Jarvis since his voice and his manner both worked perfectly. He does admit to feeling bad about taking the money since he didn’t know anything about Marvel comics at that point and he wasn’t even given a full script. He had no idea what to tell people that would come up to him talking about the Iron Man movie, but thankfully since he was put in as Vision he might have gained a better understanding of the character and the universe at some point since otherwise, it doesn’t feel as though he would have been nearly as impressive.
1. Kit Harington knew nothing about Pompeii before starring in the movie Pompeii.
You might think that of course, an actor would research something about the movie they’re working on, but obviously that’s not the case since Kit Harington had no knowledge of Pompeii before starting in the movie. Sadly, the movie didn’t really go anywhere since it was a pretty big flop, but the Game of Thrones star could have at least read a book, or a 5th-grade history text that would have told of the tragedy that befell Pompeii so long ago.
Preparation is pretty important after all.