10 Things You Didn't Know About American Psycho

Read this before you return those videotapes.

Mary Harron€™s American Psycho is a brilliant piece of film-making, but nonetheless a very, very weird one. When else have you seen an investment banker consider feeding a stray cat to a cash machine, for instance? With that in mind, you might be surprised to hear that there was an even stranger story going on behind the scenes €“ actors were sacked, directors replaced and at one point the script ended with a big musical number atop a New York landmark. No really, it did. Within the film itself there€™s often more going on than meets the eye, as well. There€™s improvisation, unsettling editing and tiny references back to Bret Easton Ellis€™ iconic novel that you might have missed. And just you wait until you hear all the weird ways in which Christian Bale prepared for the role of Patrick Bateman. A role that, for a time, it seemed like he might have missed out on€

10. Leonardo DiCaprio Was Almost Bateman

Director Mary Harron hired Christian Bale for the part of Patrick Bateman in 1997, three year€™s before American Psycho€™s eventual release. Prior to this, David Lynch had been attached to direct the movie in 1992, and Johnny Depp had expressed interest in the title role. Even after being hired, Bale continued to face competition for the part. When Lionsgate had come on board as the distributor, they weren€™t convinced that the Welshman was famous enough for the part. (At the time he€™d appeared in plenty of films but wasn€™t yet established as a bankable leading man.) Lionsgate were keen for Harron to consider Ed Norton and Leonardo DiCaprio. Harron refused to see DiCaprio, wishing to uphold her agreement with Bale and believing that Leo€™s teen charm reputation of the time would diminish the movie. Director Oliver Stone was brought in to replace Harron, but couldn€™t agree with DiCaprio on the direction of the film (Stone wanted less satire and more psychological stuff). The role was offered to Ewan McGregor, who ultimately turned it down because Bale €“ still holding out hope and refusing other auditions €“ asked him to. Bale€™s persistence paid off when he and Harron were re-hired, albeit with a strict budget of only $10 million and a Lionsgate demand that recognisable talent fill out the supporting roles.

Film & TV journo. Quite tall.