Just in time for Easter, we've got some movie trivia that's sure to turn your stomach.
Leading Lady, the new memoir by former Paramount Pictures CEO Sherry Lansing, features a section that reveals the truth about the infamous bunny-boiling scene in 1987's Fatal Attraction. Film-goers will recall that Glenn Close's character Alex seeks revenge on her lover Dan (Michael Douglas) and his family by breaking into their home and killing his daughter's pet bunny. His wife Beth (Anne Archer) finds the creature being boiled in a pot on the stovetop, at which point everyone watching pretty much passed out from shock and trauma. The term "bunny boiler" has been used to disparage women who appear to be clingy or emotionally unstable ever since.
According to an excerpt from Lansing's book printed in The Hollywood Reporter, the bunny used in the scene was real. A rabbit was purchased from a local butcher to give the scene a realistic touch. Though the creature was already dead and not actually boiled alive, this factoid might make even the most devout carnivore send a check to PETA.
"We tried to take its innards out to make it real," director Adrian Lyne shared in Leading Lady. "But then it didn't have any heft. It was just like a little bit of skin. So we had to boil it with all of its innards, and the stench was beyond belief. That probably helped Anne [Archer] because the smell was so bad."
Lansing also described the "operatic screaming fights" on the set, with Douglas claiming that Lyne called him "bloody Orson Welles" when he gained weight during filming. Close, too, was under scrutiny for her appearance. The actress' sexiness was debated before she was cast in the role of Dan's mistress.
"There was a debate about her sexiness," Douglas revealed. "They gave me the most beautiful wife you could imagine, and the whole thing was, how could you leave this gorgeous woman for Glenn Close?"
Body-shaming and boiled bunnies. Just another day in Hollywood.