‘Princess Bride’ Director Rob Reiner Reveals the Ending They Cut From the Movie
The Princess Bride has been a lot of people’s favorite movie since it came out in 1987, or when they discovered it in the years since. Some fans watch the film over and over and know it by heart. So when you hear about a brand new scene that you’ve never seen before, that’s exciting. The film’s director, Rob Reiner, described a scene he filmed but cut from the movie.
[Spoiler alert: This article contains spoilers for The Princess Bride.]
Reiner and the cast of The Princess Bride reunited over video chat on Sept. 13 for a fundraiser for the Democratic Party of Wisconsin. After reading the entire script as their characters (Reiner played the late Peter Falk’s role of the grandfather), they answered questions from fans.
This is how Rob Reiner almost ended ‘The Princess Bride’
The grandfather reads The Princess Bride to his grandson (Fred Savage in the movie) while he is home from school, sick. At the end of the story, the four heroes – Westley (Cary Elwes), Buttercup (Robin Wright), Fezzik (Andre the Giant) and Inigo Montoya (Mandy Patinkin) ride off on four white horses. Back in the bedroom, the grandson asks his grandfather to come back and read to him again tomorrow. That’s where the film ends.
“We had this sequence that we did shoot,” Reiner said. “We didn’t use it. It was after the grandfather leaves the boy and he starts leafing through the book as the grandfather leaves. And, he looks out the window and he sees the four heroes on the four white horses and they’re waving at him.”
The unused ‘Princess Bride’ ending wasn’t so easy to film
It sounds simple, having Savage look out the window and see the characters from the story. They went to a lot of trouble to film it, only for Reiner to cut it out of the movie anyway.
“So we had this sequence, we had the four white horses and we wanted to suspend them in the air,” Reiner said. “Now we have Andre who weighed 500 lbs. You can’t just put him on a horse. You have to figure out a way to lift him down with a guy-wire, with cables and all this.”
Andre the Giant was a good sport in this scene
Andre was in discomfort while filming The Princess Bride. He had severe back pain. His costars also tell stories about Andre’s legendary drinking. This alternate ending was one such story.
“The day we were going to shoot this, the Nouveau Boujelais came out,” Reiner said. “I’m not exaggerating. Andre started drinking at nine o’clock in the morning. He drank literally 20 bottles of Nouveau Beaujolais all day. We wer egoing to shoot that sequences towards the end of the day and it was eight o’clock at night and I’m walking down to the end of the soundstage at Shepperton.”
Even though he directed the crew to coordinate this scene, Reiner still couldn’t believe what he was watching.
“There’s a little misty rain and they open the doors of the soundstage,” Reiner said. “From the ceiling, a drunken giant is being lowered on cables to sit on this horse and he’s going, ‘Hello boss.’ I’m thinking what the hell kind of job do I have?”