1. The Original Movie Was Super Dark.
Pretty Woman, now a beloved romantic comedy, was initially a dark cautionary tale about drugs and sex work. Vivian was an addict, and Edward paid her $3,000 for the week, eventually discarding her from his car. Luckily, Disney’s president demanded a rewrite, leading to the heartwarming version we adore today.
2. Almost No Julia Roberts
Initially, Julia Roberts was cast as Vivian in Pretty Woman. However, when Disney acquired the film, their executives hesitated to have Roberts on board, as she was relatively unknown at the time. To secure her role, Roberts had to audition again for the new director, Garry Marshall, and the rest became history.
3. Other Possible Vivians
Though it’s now difficult to envision anyone else as Vivian, several actresses, including Molly Ringwald, Diane Lane, Daryl Hannah, and Michelle Pfeiffer, were initially offered the role before Julia Roberts. Surprisingly, they all declined the opportunity. Hopefully, Roberts wasn’t disheartened by being the director’s final pick!
4. Richard Gere Turned Down The Movie Several Times.
Richard Gere initially declined the role of Edward Lewis multiple times, finding it bland and lacking personality. He even joked that a suit on a goat could have played the part just as well. But what made him eventually change his mind?
5. Chemistry Off The Set
Julia Roberts played a key role in convincing Richard Gere to accept the part. She traveled to New York to meet with him, and they instantly hit it off. During their meeting, Roberts handed Gere a post-it note with the words “Please say yes” when the director called, and he ultimately agreed to take on the role.
6. The Deceptive Poster
On the classic Pretty Woman poster, we see Julia Roberts, but surprisingly, her body actually belongs to her body double, Shelley Michelle. Michelle posed for the photo, and Roberts’ head was later superimposed onto her body. And here’s a fun fact – in the movie, Richard Gere’s hair is grey, but on the poster, it’s black. Quite a few interesting secrets are hidden in plain sight!
7. The Secret Behind That Perfect Laugh
During the scene in Pretty Woman where Julia Roberts was laughing at old reruns of I Love Lucy on the hotel room floor, her hysterical laughter wasn’t just incredible acting. The crew was tickling Roberts’ feet off camera, making her laugh genuinely. Now we all know her secret weakness! Watch out, Julia!
8. An Unscripted But Classic Scene
Do you recall that classic scene in Pretty Woman when Edward presented Vivian with the diamond necklace for the opera and playfully closed the box? Well, Richard Gere improvised the snapping shut, and Julia Roberts’ natural and endearing reaction was so perfect that the director chose to keep it in the final cut.
9. The Diamond Necklace Was Worth $250,000.
The diamond necklace that Edward gave Vivian wasn’t just a prop. It was a real diamond necklace worth $250,000 borrowed from a jewelry store. Due to its substantial value, the jeweler insisted on sending a security guard to the set to keep a close eye on it.
10. The Iconic Red Jacket Was Bought Off The Street!
Julia Roberts’ portrayal of Vivian became iconic, especially for the mini dress, thigh-high boots, and red jacket she wore. However, on the day of filming the street scene, the crew realized they didn’t have the specified jacket from the script. Thinking on their feet, they spotted a girl in the crowd wearing a red jacket that fit the look they wanted. They approached her and bought the jacket for $30 to complete the scene.