8 Famous Movie Scenes You Didn't Know Were Stupidly Hard To Film

How hard is it to walk through a doorway? For Tom Cruise it was mission: impossible.

Spider Man Tobey Maguire Kirsten Dunst
Columbia Pictures

Despite what your favorite, malcontented blogger or film critic might tell you, making movies isn't easy. Moviemaking is an extremely tedious process that requires an otherworldly amount of focus, organization, and an ability to repeat the exact same line or action dozens of times without losing your !*$% mind.

Most of us probably picture the filming of a scene to go something like this: Actor 1 says their line, Actor 2 reacts, Actor 1 makes a dramatic exit, and the director says cut. Then they all go to their trailers and have sex with their gold-plated prostitutes.

And sure, some productions might actually be that way. But not all directors are quite so free-wheelin' in their process. Some aren't satisfied with a "good" performance; they demand perfection. And that's understandable. After all, they're sinking months or even years into a project, and they don't want potential mediocrity following them around for the rest of their professional lives.

But what happens when they take their quest for perfection a little too far? Well, sometimes they spend an entire day's worth of filming trying to get a flawless shot of their lead actor performing a menial task...

8. Stanley Kubrick Really Hated How Tom Cruise Walked Through Doorways

Spider Man Tobey Maguire Kirsten Dunst
Warner Bros.

You know how, in your daily life, you walk through a fair amount of doorways? And...well, that's it? Now imagine someone standing on the other side of that doorway screaming at you to "Do it better!" every time you pass through it. That should give you a general idea of what it's like to be an actor in a Stanley Kubrick film. It was also Tom Cruise's actual experience on the set of Kubrick's lukewarm opus, Eyes Wide Shut.

The notoriously testy director is infamous for breaking his actors down with an obscene amount of retakes because he believes that mental exhaustion is the only way to get a realistic performance from his overpaid, celebrity puppets. And hey, you can't argue with the results it produced in The Shining. (Which, don't worry, we'll get to later.)

But what the hell was so special about a five second shot of Cruise walking through a door that it required 95 takes? Yeah, that's right. Just a handful shy of a cool hundred takes just to get one of the most famous actors in the world to stride through a doorway in a manner that Kubrick could tolerate. And you have to give Cruise some credit for never once complaining about the sheer ridiculousness of that scenario.

That madness wasn't an isolated incident, either. Production for Eyes Wide Shut went way over schedule and resulted in 15 total months of filming, which actually broke the Guinness World Record for longest continual film shoot. Maybe if the set design had included fewer doorways...

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Jacob is a part-time contributor for WhatCulture, specializing in music, movies, and really, really dumb humor.