18 Facts About the Movie “Se7en,” a Film That Even the Most Eminent Actors Weren’t Ready For

Today, it’s hard to surprise anyone with harsh scenes and unexpected plot twists. But 25 years ago, the movie Se7en made a small revolution in the genre of detective films, thanks to its mind-blowing ending, which, by the way, might not have happened.

Bright Side hopes that you watched this masterpiece a long time ago and are ready to read about how one of the most highly acknowledged films of the 20th century was made. But we have to warn you that there are spoilers in this article, so if you haven’t seen the movie, go watch it, and then come back to us.

  • When Andrew Kevin Walker was writing the script, he was very depressed, because he didn’t like where he was living. However, Walker was satisfied with his work, and he sent the script to his colleague, David Koepp, who helped him to get in touch with New Line Cinema.

  • It’s funny that Walker knew almost nothing about the 7 deadly sins before he started working on the script, and he put his ignorance into the character played by Brad Pitt.

  • The film’s director, David Fincher, was delighted with the film’s ending when he read the script. But then his agent said that a wrong draft was sent to him by mistake. And the director replied, “No, this is the one,” and he spent a lot of time convincing the studio management that it was necessary to choose this ending, which was considered risky for those times.

  • Denzel Washington turned down the role of detective Mills (Brad Pitt), because he considered the film to be “too dark and evil.” After watching the movie, Washington admitted that he regretted his decision.

  • David Fincher wanted Gwyneth Paltrow to play the role of Brad Pitt’s on-screen wife. But the actress was completely uninterested in the role. Then the director used a little trick and asked Pitt to persuade Gwyneth to take this part, taking advantage of the fact that the celebrities were dating back then.

  • During the filming of the scene in which Brad Pitt chases John Doe, he breaks his arm, and the scriptwriters had to make this injury a part of the script.

  • For the role of the victim guilty of sloth, Fincher wanted to find an abnormally thin man. The actor who came to the audition weighed 96 lbs, and the director jokingly asked him to lose a bit more weight. But, to his surprise, the actor lost another 6 pounds and looked truly scary in the film.

  • The preparation of actor, Leland Orser, who played the forced executioner of a woman guilty of lust, was no less difficult either. For this minor role, the actor didn’t sleep for 2 days, and was constantly drinking coffee. Over 40 takes were filmed for the scene and Orser even passed out at one point due to the emotional intensity.

  • Kevin Spacey, at some point, became the main candidate for the role of John Doe. But his involvement would have cost the studio a fortune, and Fincher was advised to find someone else. Brad Pitt stepped in at the right time and convinced the studio magnates that Spacey was the perfect fit.
  • The main requirement for Spacey was that his name wouldn’t be included in the opening credits and that he wouldn’t participate in the promotion of the film. This was done to preserve the intrigue as much as possible, and hardly anyone would say that these precautions were unnecessary.

  • It was Kevin Spacey who came up with the idea to shave John Doe’s head. He pitched it to David Fincher, and the director replied, “If you do it, I’ll do it.” Both of them were bald for the remainder of the movie’s production.

  • Each page in the diary of John Doe was written and drawn by hand. It took 2 months of work and $15,000 to accomplish this.

  • The hiring of Spacey wasn’t the first example of Brad Pitt’s influence on the production of the film. His main requirement, after he was approved to play the part, was that exactly the same ending the audience saw in the end, would be filmed. The actor even included it as a clause in his contract.

  • In the final scenes of the film that were filmed from a helicopter, the actors were replaced by stunt doubles. And it was all because shooting these scenes didn’t fit into their busy schedule.
  • Few people know this, but an unofficial sequel to the movie Se7en was released in 2015. It’s called Solace. This, of course, is a joke, but the New Line Cinema film production studio really did develop the script for the sequel under this name, and then they refused to film it. The draft of the script became the basis for a separate film.

  • In 2008, a comic book of the same name, that was based on the film, was released. But unlike the movie, in the comic book, the narration comes from the perspective of John Doe.

  • Brad Pitt shared his memories of one of the premiere screenings, "The movie ends, they flick on the lights, and I look at people. And they just slowly get up from their seats, and no one’s talking. Then, they just disappear from the screening. I remember just looking at Fincher and asking him, “What did we do wrong? What’s going on? I thought we made a great movie.” Luckily, the film received a lot of positive reviews and made an impressive amount of money at the box office.

And now, here’s a fact with a very impressive spoiler. We warned you...

  • Many fans still claim to have seen the scary contents of the box, although even when this scene is viewed frame by frame, only clumps of the victim’s hair are visible. For all who were eager to stare at Gwyneth Paltrow in a box, she prepared this Halloween costume:

Which detective film do you think is the best?

Preview photo credit Se7en / Warner Bros.
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