A good script is supposed to have incredible moments and carefully crafted lines, but sometimes it takes an actor deep in character to fill the space between the lines with realistic, memorable moments that were born solely from the momentum of the scene. Sure, improvisation doesn’t always work out, and many unscripted scenes have been cut from the final product, but when it does work, it has proven to be legendary.
The classic romance, directed by Michael Curtiz, is known for its immortal line: “Here’s looking at you, kid.” Little do most people know, Humphrey Bogart improvised it!
‘Good Will Hunting’ (1997)
One of the most memorable moments from the film is when Robin Williams discusses his wife’s unconscious flatulence, but the improvisation worked splendidly and the two stars’ fit of laughter was genuine.
'Django Unchained' (2012)
Leonardo DiCaprio accidentally cut his hand open while filming a scene but decided to keep acting anyway, even smearing his real blood all over Kerry Washington's face. When the scene was over, the cast and crew gave him a standing ovation.
The infamous scene where Maya Rudolph runs across the street in a wedding dress and proceeds to poop on the street was somehow born from the actress's imagination!
'The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers' (2002)
When Aragorn kicks a helmet out of frustration, he lets out an unscripted roar that was actually the result of actor Viggo Mortensen breaking his toe.
'Raiders of the Lost Ark' (1981)
The script included a lengthy sword fight between Indiana Jones and one of the bad guys, but Ford was suffering from dysentery and could only film in 10 minute increments, so he changed the scene at the last minute and just shot the goon, cutting out what would have taken two to three days to film.
'Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets' (2002)
When Harry and Ron transform into Crabbe and Goyle, Goyle is wearing glasses and Malfoy, AKA Tom Felton, asks why. Goyle says he was reading, and Felton, in place of a forgotten line, delivered one of Malfoy's most iconic lines: "I didn’t know you could read."
'The Godfather' (1972)
Few people know the origins of the scene-stealing cat in the film which wasn't in the script, and many say that Francis Ford Coppola put the creature on Marlon Brando's lap just before they started filming.
'The Empire Strikes Back' (1980)
In the scene where Han Solo is taken away to be frozen in the graphite machine, the character was supposed to reply "Me too," in response to Carrie Fisher's "I love you," but Harrison Ford changed it to "I know," to be more fitting for his character.
'Crazy, Stupid, Love' (2011)
Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone's intoxicating love scene, the pillow talk following the 'Dirty Dancing' bit, was almost all improvised, and the director said they just poured a couple drinks and filmed them for a really long time.
'The Usual Suspects' (1995)
In the lineup scene at the police station, the actors were simply supposed to step up and repeat a line, one by one, straight-faced. Apparently Benicio Del Toro kept farting and no one could get through the scene without laughing.