20 Things You Didn't Know About Waterworld

Kevin Costner's infamous "flop" celebrates 25 years.

Waterworld Still

The Kevin Costner-starring aquatic blockbuster Waterworld has just turned 25 years old, and it's fair to say that it remains one of the most infamous and divisive Hollywood tentpoles of all time.

Produced for a frankly indecent budget and beset by unrelenting issues during shooting, it's a classic case of a troubled production which probably needed to pump the brakes and regroup before filming ever got started.

But start filming did on the post-apocalyptic action flick, with Costner playing The Mariner, a mutant drifter trying to survive in a world where the polar ice caps have melted, causing the sea level to rise to Earth-ravaging levels.

Though Waterworld is often dismissed as a dud, it's certainly a more interesting film than its reputation might suggest, even if the tales of its torrid production are undeniably more engrossing than anything in the movie itself.

And so, over the last quarter-decade many members of the cast and crew have unfurled their own stories of the film's absurd development, from scripting through to shooting and post-production.

Above all else, these fascinating stories make it abundantly clear why the final film turned out exactly as it did...

20. The Script Had 36 Drafts From Six Different Writers

Waterworld Still

Though it's totally common for huge tentpole movies to be endlessly rewritten before they go before cameras - and sometimes even during - Waterworld's screenplay went through a frankly alarming number of drafts before the shooting script was finally ready to go.

In the end, six writers took a pop at writing the movie, resulting in a stonking 36 (!) drafts before settling on the final script collaborated upon by Peter Rader and David Twohy.

A big part of the reason for the extensive rewrites was the fact that there were so many cooks in the kitchen, with four producers who each brought their own unique vision to the table, including Kevin Costner himself.

Even after a shooting script was settled on, however, rewrites continued during principal photography, likely explaining why the end result feels so shapeless and scattershot.

In this post: 
Posted On: 

Stay at home dad who spends as much time teaching his kids the merits of Martin Scorsese as possible (against the missus' wishes). General video game, TV and film nut. Occasional sports fan. Full time loon.