Steven Spielberg’s ‘feud’ with Julia Roberts on the set of Hook explained

Steven Spielberg talks about his family during 2018 interview

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One of the only films from Spielberg that was deemed a failure was his 1991 Peter Pan adaptation Hook. Although the film made a staggering $300 million at the box office and was a commercial success, it was deemed a financial failure by the film’s distributors TriStar Pictures. Issues were had on set while filming, as well, mostly involving Pretty Woman actor Roberts.

The story goes that Roberts was beginning to go through a break-up with her fiancé when filming began.

Roberts was engaged to Lost Boys actor Kiefer Sutherland at the time.

The actors got together while filming 1990 movie Flatliners. However, their relationship crumbled when a story was sold to newspapers about a young dancer spending the night with Sutherland while he was with the Hollywood star.

When Roberts found out Sutherland was cheating on her she called off the marriage, just days before their wedding.

These tragic events occurred during the shooting of Hook, leaving Roberts distressed, reportedly garnering her the nickname TinkerHell.

Spielberg was asked about Roberts’ behaviour on set during an interview with 60 Minutes, where he confessed: “It was an unfortunate time for us to work together.

“But I think Julia is a really, really good actress.”

When he was asked if he would work together with her again, Spielberg said: “This is a 60 minutes question isn’t it?” Before adding: “No.”

https://www.youtube.com/embed/HUbT4LRDOig

According to Den of Geek, Spielberg later said: “Julia probably went through the most trying times of her life [during filming].

“And it was simply bad timing for all of us that she happened to start on Hook at that low point.”

Roberts later commented on the nickname TinkerHell, saying: “No. I never heard it [the nickname].”

The Academy Award winner then referenced her time on set, saying: “But I’m a normal person. I mean, if I sit in my trailer for six hours doing nothing, I’m going to say: ‘What the f**k is going on?’”

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She also responded to Spielberg’s comments while speaking to Vanity Fair, where she confessed: “I saw that and my eyes popped out of my head.

“I couldn’t believe it. I couldn’t believe that this person that I knew and trusted was actually hesitating to come to my defence.

“It was a hard lesson to learn. It was the first time that I felt I had a turncoat in my midst.”

Conversely, Spielberg worked flawlessly alongside star of the movie, Robin Williams.

The pair had a lot of fun while filming the movie.

They maintained a strong relationship long after Hook had come out. Williams even comforted Spielberg during the shooting for Jewish Holocaust movie Schindler’s List.

In an interview, Spielberg revealed: “Robin knew what I was going through, and once a week, Robin would call me on schedule and he would do 15 minutes of stand-up [comedy] on the phone.

“I would laugh hysterically because I had to release so much.”

Hook is available to watch on Amazon Prime Video. 

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