Marlon Brando may have given one of cinema’s most iconic speeches as Jor-El of Krypton when he sent his son, Kal-El, to Earth in Richard Donner’s Superman, but the Man of Steel himself, Christopher Reeve, was no fan of the actor’s work ethic. After the 1978 film, Reeves lashed out at Brando, saying that the veteran actor only cared for the paycheck and he took the “$2 million [salary] and ran.”
In a 1982 interview with David Letterman, Reeve called out Brando on his lack of passion for the movie. “I don’t say this to be vicious, but I don’t worship at the altar of Marlon Brando, because I feel he’s copped out in a certain way,” Reeve said. “What happened is the press loved him whether he was good, bad or indifferent; that people just thought he was an institution no matter what he did, so he doesn’t care anymore.”
Reeve criticized Brando for not being “a real leader” to the young actors he worked with and wasting the opportunity to groom Hollywood’s next generation.
“I just think it would be sad to be 53, or whatever he is, and not give a damn, that’s all,” Reeve added. Reeve, who died in 2004, maintained back then that he became disenchanted with Brando because he cared so much about Superman, only to see Brando “phoning it in,” which echoed the concerns that Donner himself had after being told that the Oscar-winner “hates to work and he loves money.”
(via The Hollywood Reporter)
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