The Godfather

“The first time I read it, it’ll be honest”: Marlon Brando Cheated Superman Director With His Lazy Acting Despite $3.7M Salary That Enraged Christopher Reeve

Richard Donner’s 1978 movie Superman is considered to be one of the best adaptations of the Kryptonian hero. Starring Christopher Reeve and Marlon Brando, the movie not only started an entire era of the DC superhero but also became Warner Bros.’s biggest hit at the time. However, the co-stars did not seem to enjoy working with each other, as the lead star of the movie said that he didn’t “worship at the alter of Marlon Brando.”

Superman (1978)
Superman (1978)

Not just Reeve, the film’s director also shared that he was warned about working with The Godfather star, as he comes up with measures to avoid performing.

Read More: “I’ll pay you a million dollars”: Marlon Brando’s Legal Trouble Helped Richard Donner Land Superman That Was Originally Given to James Bond Director

Marlon Brando Tried to Put in Minimal Effort for His Superman Role

Christopher Reeve starred alongside the legendary actor Marlon Brando in the 1978 movie that marked his debut as the DC superhero. While the movie did amazing at the box office and also landed positive reviews, things did not seem that great behind the scenes.

Marlon Brando in Superman (1978)
Marlon Brando in Superman (1978)

The Chase star was reportedly paid $3.7 million along with 11.75% of the backend for the movie. However, the director of the film, Richard Donner, shared the actor tried everything to manipulate his way into doing the least work possible as Superman’s biological father, Jor-El.

He shared that Brando tried to avoid appearing on the screen, suggesting that he should play the character as a “bagel.”After some discussion, the director was able to persuade the actor to do the part himself. However,  he still had some conditions regarding that.

Richard Donner on the sets of Superman (1978)
Richard Donner on the sets of Superman (1978)

Donner shared that they had to put his dialogues on the chests of other actors, as he claimed, “I don’t want to read it like I’ve read it before a bunch of times. The first time I read it, it’ll be honest.” However, The Omen director shared that despite his antics, he gave a great performance in the movie.

Read More: “Why don’t I play this like a bagel?”: Marlon Brando Had a Bizarre Idea for His Superman Role That Left Director Richard Donner Puzzled

Christopher Reeve Did Not Like Working With Marlon Brando

By the time Marlon Brando starred in the 1978 movie, he had established himself among the best actors in the industry. However, Christopher Reeve was still a newcomer in the industry, with the 1978 movie being his second big-screen appearance.

Christopher Reeve
Christopher Reeve

And he did not have a very pleasant experience working alongside the legendary star. Reeve also did not hesitate to share his opinion when asked about his Superman co-star. Saying that the actor “copped out in a certain way,” he claimed that Brando was no longer in the leadership position that he could be.

While Reeve said that he had a wonderful time working on the movie, The Nightcomers actor “just took the [money] and ran.” He claimed that he was disappointed that despite being a great actor, Brando was not willing to put any effort into his work.

Superman is available on Max.

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