24. The Shoot Was Incredibly Unpleasant For Pitt
If there’s one thing everyone knows about Cruise, it’s that he is to hard work what Leonardo DiCaprio is to twenty-year-old models.
Brad Pitt? Not so much. Pitt was absolutely miserable during the shoot - and it wasn’t just the flipped out make-up regime. Playing a vampire amongst other vampires meant six months of night shooting, wearing painful contact lenses - and the part wasn’t quite as advertised.
With Cruise playing Lestat, the emphasis had shifted away from Louis as a character. Pitt didn’t get a script until two weeks before filming, and found that what had attracted him to the role when he read the book simply didn’t exist anymore.
Without Louis’ first person narration to let you into his head, the character was sulky and pretentious, and not nearly as compelling to play. Pitt was so fed up he contemplated quitting:
Six months in the f*cking dark. Contact lenses, makeup, I’m playing the bitch role… I'm telling you, one day it broke me. It was like, 'Life's too short for this quality of life.' I called David Geffen... I said, 'David, I can't do this anymore. I can't do it. What will it cost me to get out?' And he goes, very calmly, 'Forty million dollars.' And I go, 'OK, thank you.' It actually took the anxiety off of me. I was like, 'I've got to man up and ride this through, and that's what I'm going to do.'