“If you build it, he will come” is a line baseball fans everywhere are familiar with. It’s from Field of Dreams which was released in 1989 and remains one of the most popular baseball movies today. The film, starring Kevin Costner, grossed more than $84 million at the box office and it’s one of those movies you never get tired of watching over and over again. However, one of the film’s other stars, Ray Liotta, has never seen it even once and there’s a very sad reason behind that.
Read on to find out why Liotta has never watched Field of Dreams.
Who Ray Liotta plays in Field of Dreams
The classic flick is about an Iowa farmer named Ray Kinsella (Costner) who is inspired by a voice he can’t ignore to build a baseball diamond in his cornfields. That attracts the ghosts of eight Chicago White Sox players banned from the game for throwing the 1919 World Series. One of the most famous being outfielder “Shoeless” Joe Jackson. He was portrayed by Liotta. At the time Field of Dreams was just the third movie he worked on.
Liotta garnered positive reviews for the role, however, baseball historians have pointed out the inaccuracy that Jackson actually batted left-handed and threw right-handed not the reverse that is shown in the film.
Why Liotta never watched the movie
Field of Dreams received critical praise and was nominated for three Academy Awards. In 2017, it was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress. But it’s a movie Liotta has never seen. The actor revealed that in an interview with Huff Post several years back. “My mom was really sick during that period, so it brings back other things,” he stated.
Liotta elaborated in 2021 when speaking on The Rich Eisen Show telling the host that he did actually sit down to watch it with his mother but she was so sick at the time that “she couldn’t really enjoy herself so we left and I just equate it with that.” He added: “I will [see it] someday, maybe.”
Another one of his iconic movies that many fans have seen countless times is Goodfellas. But not Liotta. He stated that he’s only watched that: “Once. Well, twice, I’ve seen it now. Because I saw it… with my daughter at a film festival. It was on the big screen, so just to share that with her. But, no, if it’s on TV, I’ll pass it. I’ll skip it. I don’t stop and like, ‘Oh, my movie is on’ and watch.”
Liotta’s mom died of cancer while he was filming Goodfellas. He admitted that he used the anger over losing her to do certain scenes like the pistol-whipping one.
Things you didn’t know about ‘Field of Dreams’
Something you probably didn’t know about the classic baseball film is that future A-list stars Matt Damon and Ben Affleck were extras in the movie. MLB.com noted that the actors were extras in attendance for the game at Fenway Park. This came to light years later when Affleck was cast in The Sum of All Fears and told Phil Alden Robinson who directed both films: “Nice working with you again.”
One more thing fans have always wanted to know is just who was the mysterious voice that tells Ray: “If you build it, he will come.” Some think it’s Costner and while others believe it’s Liotta. Well according to W.P. Kinsella, author of the book Shoeless Joe which Field of Dreams is based on, it’s actor Ed Harris. He’s married to Amy Madigan who played Annie Kinsella.