It’s one of the most romantic movies of all time. But if fans got a glimpse of what was going on behind the scenes, they’d see something very different than love between Rachel McAdams and Ryan Gosling. Actually, they’d be shocked to see what looks closer to pure hatred.
It’s all very surprising when you stop to consider that McAdams and Gosling dated for a while after the movie premiered in 2004. But it’s true — talk to any of their costars and you’ll hear the same story of animosity, hurt feelings, and turmoil between the two main stars of the film.
Noah Calhoun and Allie Hamilton didn’t have a perfect relationship either, so maybe it all makes sense. Here’s why Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams didn’t get along.
No one knew how popular ‘The Notebook’ would become
Though producers had high hopes for the film, no one could have predicted the overwhelming success of this simple love story based on the Nicholas Sparks novel by the same name. And one of the most romantic little-known facts of all? The whole thing was based on a true story. Sparks got the idea after hearing the story of how his then-wife Cathy’s grandparents fell in love.
The movie was the sleeper hit of 2004, bringing in a whopping $115 million at the box office. Gosling and McAdams were officially superstars.
Rachel McAdams and Ryan Gosling’s fighting on set was legendary
Actors and actresses don’t always get along while shooting a movie. But in the case of McAdams and Gosling, the drama was so bad that he tried to have his co-star replaced with someone else.
Director Nick Cassavetes explained it later during an interview with VH1, saying: “Maybe I’m not supposed to tell this story, but they were really not getting along one day on set. Really not.”
“And Ryan came to me, and there’s 150 people standing in this big scene, and he says, ‘Nick come here.’ And he’s doing a scene with Rachel and he says, ‘Would you take her out of here and bring in another actress to read off camera with me?’ I said, ‘What?’ He says, ‘I can’t. I can’t do it with her. I’m just not getting anything from this.'”
They made up by talking things out
Cassavetes helped diffuse the situation by forcing the two feuding actors to work it out and talk about their feelings.
“We went into a room with a producer; they started screaming and yelling at each other. I walked out. At that point, I was smoking cigarettes. I smoked a cigarette and everybody came out like, ‘All right let’s do this.’ And it got better after that, you know?” Cassavetes explained.
“They had it out… I think Ryan respected her for standing up for her character and Rachel was happy to get that out in the open. The rest of the film wasn’t smooth sailing, but it was smoother sailing.”
The movie almost looked very different
Multiple different actresses tried out for the part including Britney Spears and Jessica Biel, to name a few. Rachel McAdams got the script less than 24 hours before her audition. Still, she nailed it. Meanwhile, Tom Cruise was considered for the role of Noah until the director decided he wanted someone less conventionally handsome.
Gosling recalls meeting director Cassavetes, saying, “He looked at me and said, ‘I want you to play this role because you’re not like the other young actors out there in Hollywood. You’re not handsome, you’re not cool, you’re just a regular guy who looks a bit nuts.'”
But we all know how this story ended. Despite fighting, tension, and uncertain casting, the movie worked out exactly how it was supposed to. And despite all their on-set animosity, Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams ended up dating each other briefly in real life from 2004 to 2007.