“My Best Friends Wedding” almost had a completely different ending, everything we know about the ’90s is a lie
Technology gods bless the internet for constantly providing us with insight into faves we grew up with. We just found out about the alternate ending to My Best Friend’s Wedding, and it’s even better than the alternate credits for Sex and the City. While obviously we’re aware that movies go through many rewrites and re-cuts and reshoots before they ever make it to us, it’s hard to imagine movies that we think of as ~classics~ any way than they are.
But apparently the original cut of My Best Friend’s Wedding was horribly unsatisfying to audiences and studio execs. The problem? Nobody sympathized with Julia Roberts.
It’s hard to imagine, since the film as we know it makes her into an incredibly relatable, if not slightly over the top, character… who does some admittedly terrible things but for understandable, if not sympathetic, reasons. But in the original cut, her best friend, George, was much less present. The director, P.J. Hogan, explained to Entertainment Weekly how he was the key to fixing the movie:
"We expanded his character. Every time Julianne talked to him, she’d explain why she was doing these terrible things; he’s her conscience throughout. Whenever she was being particularly devious I’d have her phone Rupert’s character and he would call her out on it.
We were surprised to find out many of those scenes were added in and shot after the fact! George even solved the audience’s problems with the ending from test screenings, where seeing Julia Roberts not get her happy ending really bothered.
“It would have been such a downer of an ending if George hadn’t shown up. That one scene somehow gave the audience permission to forgive Julianne. Those last five minutes really made the whole movie work.
Even weirder? Julianne almost ended up with a completely different guy — not Michael, and not George. Originally, John Corbett (of Sex and the City fame) showed up out nowhere and swept Julianne off her feet. CAN YOU EVEN IMAGINE?
No, you cannot, and that’s why we’re so happy My Best Friends Wedding ends the way it does. Say a little pray for that.