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Kubrick: Cruise and Kidman ruined 'Eyes Wide Shut'

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Kubrick: Cruise and Kidman ruined 'Eyes Wide Shut'

Old 10-05-06, 02:42 PM
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Kubrick: Cruise and Kidman ruined 'Eyes Wide Shut'

According to IMDB at least:

Stanley Kubrick thought his last movie Eyes Wide Shut was a "piece of s**t" that was ruined by interference from its stars Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman, according to actor R. Lee Ermey. Ermey starred in Kubrick's Full Metal Jacket and remained in contact with the legendary film-maker up until his death in 1999. When the pair spoke shortly after Kubrick had completed work on Eyes Wide Shut, Ermey recalls the legendary director expressing his disappointment with the movie. He says, "Stanley called me about two weeks before he died, as a matter of fact. We had a long conversation about Eyes Wide Shut. He told me it was a piece of s**t and that he was disgusted with it and that the critics were going to have him for lunch. He said Cruise and Kidman had their way with him - exactly the words he used. He was kind of a shy little timid guy. He wasn't real forceful. That's why he didn't appreciate working with big, high-powered actors. They would have their way with him, he would lose control, and his movie would turn to s**t." Kubrick died in Hertfordshire, England of natural causes in March 1999.
Old 10-05-06, 02:48 PM
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Having this come up 7 years after the fact seems more like mudslinging at Tom Cruise than any sort of revelation. And Stanley Kubrick not forceful? They need to watch the documentary of the Shining and see him tear Shelley Duvall apart.
Old 10-05-06, 02:49 PM
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Put simply, nothing in the finished film appears to have been the result of the stars exerting any pressure to manipulate content.
Old 10-05-06, 02:57 PM
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Smells like bullshit to me...
Old 10-05-06, 03:11 PM
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Yeah, I'm wondering if Ermey is remembering the conversation correctly. I can see Kubrick maybe in the process of editing the flick and being nervous of how the critics would react to it, but he supposedly stated that he was very happy with the outcome right before his death.

Here is a link to the interview: link

Last edited by jonjj7; 10-05-06 at 03:14 PM.
Old 10-05-06, 03:15 PM
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Being a huge fan of Kubrick's i was interested to see this item on the news this morning. I am not sure how much i believe or how much is true. I am sure that R. Lee Emery was probably told this by Kubrick, but i get the feeling it was more out of disappointment at the end result than anything else. He was maybe just trying to point a finger instead of wanting to take any blame. I have seen the making of the Shining and Kubrick is definately no push over with actors.....however the actors he seemed to push the most are the ones that are either B level or unknowns. After reading books on Kubrick it is apparent that he could be as starstruck as anyone else (check out the meetings he had with Brando when they were talking about making One Eyed Jacks together) so i could believe that Kubrick was more open to Cruise/Kidmans opinions and choices than most. Kubrick always wanted a well reviewed film that actually made money. Here was his chance with the worlds most bankable star and his A-list wife. Add into the equation the fact that he always had the desire to make a big budget porno (this being the closest he would ever get to it). So i can imagine that he would back down on occassion, as long as the end product was what he was after. I like the film, but feel that is empty and without any real substance. A throw away movie that most people will not re-visit. And this is everything that a Kubrick film should not be. I was disappointed with his swansong and i am positive that he was.
Old 10-05-06, 03:17 PM
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I also do not believe that Cruise/Kidman had any real detrimental effect on the movie. The roles i felt were rather lifeless and any other actor/actress would not have been able to build upon what they did. The real problem was with the story and structure of the movie itself. It felt dated even when it came out for some reason, and the shock tactics of showing sex and nudity seemed too gimicky for a Kubrick film.
Old 10-05-06, 03:23 PM
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Ermey went on to say that 2Pac told him Suge Knight ruined Death Row.
Old 10-05-06, 03:41 PM
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Originally Posted by james2025a
I like the film, but feel that is empty and without any real substance. A throw away movie that most people will not re-visit. And this is everything that a Kubrick film should not be. I was disappointed with his swansong and i am positive that he was.
Well, I've seen it 5 times and IMHO it gets better with each viewing... One of the best films of that year. So, YMMV...

Not wanting to turn this into another pointless debate thread on EWS, it's been beaten to death, but that's my $.02.
Old 10-05-06, 03:52 PM
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Load of garbage, kubrick took forever to shoot this movie. he could have done anything he wanted. I am no huge cruise fan especially his recent behavior but you can't blame cruise and kidman for this movie bombing. kubrick made a boring, bad movie
Old 10-05-06, 04:08 PM
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In my opinion Eyes Wide Shut is a terrific piece of work, and one that doesn't look like its director made any compromises. Also, after reading the complete Ermey interview, it seems to me that the remarks about his conversation with Kubrick were wildly exaggerated.
Old 10-05-06, 04:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Johnny Zhivago
Well, I've seen it 5 times and IMHO it gets better with each viewing... One of the best films of that year. So, YMMV...

Not wanting to turn this into another pointless debate thread on EWS, it's been beaten to death, but that's my $.02.
Well my milage runs very well i would say. You are talking to a person that has seen Bladerunner over 700 times and it just keeps getting better. I have seen Eyes Wdie Shut about 10 times and i enjoy it...but i don't feel it gets better with each viewing. Most Kubrick films you can come back to time and again....but this one along with Barry Lyndon are the ones i have not wanted to revisit on a regular basis.

And 1999 was not a particularly great year for movies. We got Fight Club, The Matrix, The Insder, Magnolia and The Cider House Rules....but there were not many truly great films of that year. And Eyes Wide Shut does not classify as any sort of classic.

And i don't think you get the point of the thread. The whole discussion is Kubricks views on why Eyes Eide Shut failed, a debate about the film and what went wrong. As we are finding out what apparently Kubrick said about his work i think it is informative to find out what people think about his comments and the film in general. I guess if you are not interested you should refrain from reading and posting on this thread. IMO

Last edited by james2025a; 10-05-06 at 04:21 PM.
Old 10-05-06, 04:25 PM
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This movie was just plain bad IMHO and Cruise/Kidman had nothing to do with it. To me it was painfully dull and lifelesss, an utter bore. I think Kubrick could film a steaming pile of dog shit for two hours and some of his fans would claim it to be a masterpiece; One that gets better with each viewing.
Old 10-05-06, 04:25 PM
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Wow, this is horse shit in its purest form. Kubrick was an insane perfectionist. Any hint that the actors were doing something to bring the movie down and he would've done something about it.. whether it was getting new actors or MAKING them give the performance he wanted, it would've been his will.
Old 10-05-06, 04:30 PM
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Being that R. Lee Ermey was friends with Kubrick, I'd take his word for it. He'd know better than any of us would.
Old 10-05-06, 04:43 PM
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Originally Posted by james2025a
Well my milage runs very well i would say. You are talking to a person that has seen Bladerunner over 700 times and it just keeps getting better. I have seen Eyes Wdie Shut about 10 times and i enjoy it...but i don't feel it gets better with each viewing. Most Kubrick films you can come back to time and again....but this one along with Barry Lyndon are the ones i have not wanted to revisit on a regular basis.

And 1999 was not a particularly great year for movies. We got Fight Club, The Matrix, The Insder, Magnolia and The Cider House Rules....but there were not many truly great films of that year. And Eyes Wide Shut does not classify as any sort of classic.

And i don't think you get the point of the thread. The whole discussion is Kubricks views on why Eyes Eide Shut failed, a debate about the film and what went wrong. As we are finding out what apparently Kubrick said about his work i think it is informative to find out what people think about his comments and the film in general. I guess if you are not interested you should refrain from reading and posting on this thread. IMO
Just sayin'... The debate about EWS being average/masterpiece/shit... It's been done in the movie forum in several older threads. That's all. I'm more than happy to engage in the debate again, I was simply saying that I didn't want to be the one to start it and to me this thread is more about the load of bullshit that R. Lee is spouting. Anyone that's ever read a thing about life on a Kubrick set knows that it was his way or the highway... Shit, that goes back to Spartacus and Kirk Douglas.

American Beauty > Magnolia > Eyes Wide Shut are my favorite films from 1999. EWS is not a classic, no, but it is a better film than most give it credit for and I, personally, always enjoy a return visit. But, that's true of most Kubrick films.

Just one man's opinion.
Old 10-05-06, 04:52 PM
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Originally Posted by FinkPish
And Stanley Kubrick not forceful? They need to watch the documentary of the Shining and see him tear Shelley Duvall apart.
I watched that a few days ago and was thinking the same thing.
Old 10-05-06, 07:16 PM
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If I remember correctly, Kubrick himself called it his masterpiece.

By the way I love the film. Sometimes it's my favorite of his.
Old 10-05-06, 08:38 PM
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I think this is a case where Ermey is recalling a conversation where Kubrick was expressing nervousness and anxiety while editing the film. I can go find you other interviews where Kubrick expresses that EWS is his favorite of his films.

Also, 1999 was the best year of the '90s for film
Old 10-05-06, 08:56 PM
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Originally Posted by FinkPish
Having this come up 7 years after the fact seems more like mudslinging at Tom Cruise than any sort of revelation. And Stanley Kubrick not forceful? They need to watch the documentary of the Shining and see him tear Shelley Duvall apart.
Don't really have an opinion one way or the other but being tough with little Shelley Duvall is a little different than doing so with the biggest movie star in the world and his high profile movie star wife.
Old 10-05-06, 09:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Mrs.Nesbit
Don't really have an opinion one way or the other but being tough with little Shelley Duvall is a little different than doing so with the biggest movie star in the world and his high profile movie star wife.
Kind of like telling, oh I don't know, Kirk Douglas to take a flying fuck?
Old 10-05-06, 09:14 PM
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I would think the studio would have more to do it with, such as with adding the shadows to cover the nudity.
Old 10-05-06, 09:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Johnny Zhivago
Smells like bullshit to me...
A big load of it...Cruise and Kubrick became very good friends by all accounts I've heard.
Old 10-06-06, 02:12 AM
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The title of this thread is inaccurate.

It should read: "Ermey: Kubrick said Cruise and Kidman ruined 'Eyes Wide Shut'"

One might think that an actual Kubrick quote is being discussed here. That is obviously not the case.

Whether you believe Ermey or not you cannot deny that an Ermey quote isn't a Kubrick quote.
Old 10-06-06, 02:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Mabuse
I think this is a case where Ermey is recalling a conversation where Kubrick was expressing nervousness and anxiety while editing the film. I can go find you other interviews where Kubrick expresses that EWS is his favorite of his films.

Also, 1999 was the best year of the '90s for film
I thought I heard that Kubrick didn't finish editing the film, that he died before all the post was done.

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