Scarlett Johansson and Woody Allen have enjoyed a long and fruitful friendship, with the filmmaker recognizing Johansson’s early potential and casting her in a few of his films. However, Allen’s unconventional methods of breaking tension on set sometimes raised eyebrows. Disgraced after his ex-wife accused Allen of abusing her adopted child, the filmmaker has been surrounded by a myriad of controversies for the past 25 years. For Johansson, who had long been an admirer of Allen’s work even before collaborating with him, the opportunity to work with the acclaimed director was initially nerve-wracking. And she once admitted how it turned into a nightmare.
In an interview with IGN, the Black Widow actress admitted to being a big fan of Allen’s films and described the experience of being hired for Match Point as a dream turned into a nightmare. The camera tests, in particular, proved to be a daunting ordeal for her.
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Scarlett Johansson reveals why it was a nightmare to work with Woody Allen
During the camera tests, Scarlett Johansson recalled feeling anxious as Woody Allen watched and directed her. She mentioned that Allen introduced himself, stepped behind the camera, and observed her as she came out in various outfits. This experience became her worst nightmare, as the pressure and nerves made it challenging for her to perform well. However, she recognized the importance of overcoming her nervousness, realizing that she had to rise to the occasion and make the most of the opportunity to work with Allen.
“We did these camera tests which were horrible, long and Woody was just kind of there and he said, ‘Hey, I’m Woody Allen.’ And he stepped behind the camera and you start coming out in all these outfits. It’s like, my worst nightmare. My first take was horrible. But, then I realized that I better suck it up, because I was going to have seven weeks of this.”
But despite her nervous start, Johansson managed to find her footing and delivered the performances expected of her. And soon, Johansson and Allen developed a playful relationship over time, characterized by banter and a sense of goofiness. This dynamic was one of the reasons Allen cast Johansson in Scoop, a predominantly comedic film.
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When Woody Allen brought up Scarlett Johansson’s virginity to break the tension on set
In an interview with Movie Web, Johansson shared that she and Allen had a playful relationship, and the director wrote a comedy specifically for them. Their camaraderie continued during the filming of Scoop. She said,
“Woody and I have a playful relationship. I think he wanted to do a comedy and so he wrote a comedy for us. We went back to London all over again, but this time I had to watch him get his nose powdered. I felt it was a real honor for me and a lot of fun. It’s nice to know that somebody likes you as much as you like them.”
As part of their lighthearted exchanges, Allen would often employ unconventional tactics to break the tension between scenes. According to Hollywood, he would occasionally ask Johansson personal questions, such as inquiring about the age at which she lost her virginity. She revealed,
“We would be shooting some intense confrontational scene and then Woody would yell, ‘Cut,’ and he’d turn to me and ask, ‘So how old were you when you lost your virginity?’”
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While Johansson and Allen’s friendship and working relationship has thrived over the years, it is important to note that their collaboration has also attracted controversy. Allen has faced allegations of sexual misconduct, which has led to public discussions and debates regarding his work and the industry’s response to such allegations.