Richard Gere first refused to do ‘Pretty Woman’ but Julia Roberts used three words to win him over

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Unveiling the Untold Stories Behind “Pretty Woman”: A Tale of Stars and Fate

Richard Gere: The Unlikely Prince Charming

When it comes to the modern fairy tale “Pretty Woman,” it’s virtually impossible to picture anyone but Richard Gere playing Prince Charming opposite Julia Roberts’ damsel in distress. Gere’s portrayal of Edward, the man who conquers his fear of heights in the climactic scene to rescue Vivian (portrayed by Roberts), remains etched in our memories.

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Julia Roberts’ Role in Gere’s Casting

Less known is the fact that Charles Grodin was a strong contender for the role of Edward. However, it was Julia Roberts who urged Gere to embrace the part that would eventually define his career. Unveiling some hidden truths, the cast of the beloved 1990 romantic comedy shared previously undisclosed details during a reunion in 2015.

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Evolution of “Pretty Woman” from Darkness to Light

The movie starred a youthful Julia Roberts, who had previously appeared in “Mystic Pizza” and “Steel Magnolias,” alongside the established sex symbol Richard Gere. Interestingly, the film’s origins were far from the heartwarming tale we know today. Initially conceived under the title “3000,” the story followed a drug-addicted prostitute’s dark journey, culminating in a somber ending.

Garry Marshall: The Shaper of Dreams

However, the story took a turn when legendary producer and screenwriter Garry Marshall took the director’s chair. Disney also stepped in, reshaping the film into the enchanting fairy tale we now adore. Surprisingly, Richard Gere was initially apprehensive about the lead role, rejecting it several times.

Gere’s Struggle with Embracing the Role

Gere confessed, “It wasn’t a role, it felt like nothing. Like putting a suit on a goat and presenting it.” Despite considering Charles Grodin for the role, Marshall was determined to secure Gere’s participation, recognizing the undeniable chemistry between Roberts and Gere.

Marshall’s Unique Approach

Garry Marshall, whose legacy includes iconic films like “Runaway Bride” and “Valentine’s Day,” orchestrated the perfect pairing. He orchestrated their interaction, fostering a genuine connection off-screen, which would translate into captivating on-screen chemistry.

Gere’s Turning Point

Gere vividly recalled his first encounter with Roberts during this orchestrated meeting. In a moment that would shape his destiny, Roberts passed him a note that simply said, “Please say yes.” Gere’s enthusiastic response sealed his fate, making him an inseparable part of “Pretty Woman.”

Indelible Legacy

The film’s success is undeniably tied to the remarkable pairing of Julia Roberts and Richard Gere. Their chemistry brought the characters’ triumphs and their “happily ever after” to life in a way that resonated with audiences across generations.

Unveiling More “Pretty Woman” Secrets

Christopher Reeve, Denzel Washington, and Daniel Day-Lewis were all considered for the role of Edward Lewis. Sandra Bullock, Kristin Davis, and Sarah Jessica Parker were offered the role of Vivian but declined. The iconic necklace worn in the film was valued at $250,000, guarded by a security officer. Vivian’s iconic red coat, a symbol of the movie, was a modest $30 find. Both Ferrari and Porsche declined the opportunity to have their cars featured in the film. Behind-the-scenes anecdotes reveal tickling Julia Roberts’ feet for laughter and addressing visible nerves during filming.

“Pretty Woman”: A Timeless Tale

“Pretty Woman” stands as a testament to the power of fate and the perfect pairing of Julia Roberts and Richard Gere. Their enduring chemistry transformed a darker narrative into a timeless love story that continues to capture hearts worldwide.

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