It's hard to believe almost 20 years have passed since Charlie's Angels was first adapted to the big screen. The popular TV series, which ran for five seasons from 1976 to 1981, inspired two feature film adaptations directed by McG. They include the 2000 film, Charlie's Angels and the 2003 follow-up, Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle, both of which star Drew Barrymore, Cameron Diaz, and Lucy Liu as the titular angels.
As the newest iteration of Charlie's Angels is set to open next Friday, November 15th, it's time to take a look back at the original film. Here are 10 things you never knew about Charlie's Angels (2000)!
10 The Fight Choreographer's Cameo
For their intense martial arts training, the three female leads worked extensively with famed Chinese trainer Cheung-Yan Yuen. If you look closely, Yuen briefly appears in the film with a small speaking role.
Yuen plays a fellow first-class airline passenger at the beginning of the film. He can be spotted in the background giving speech lessons to a pair of Chinese women. Specifically, he teaches the women how to say "thank you" in Cantonese. In Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle, Yuen also appears as a "deranged mongol."
9 There Were Lots Of Casting Hopefuls
As you might imagine, landing a coveted role as one of Charlie's Angels was a big deal for Hollywood actresses at the time. But did you know who and how many A-listers were considered for the role of Alex, Dylan, and Natalie?
More than we can count. But to give you an idea, everyone from Angelina Jolie, Jada Pinkett Smith, and Thandie Newton, to Alyssa Milano, Milla Jovovich, Julia Roberts, Jenny McCarthy, Salma Hayek, Halle Berry, Jodi Foster, Kate Winslet, Reese Witherspoon, Uma Thurman, Gwyneth Paltrow, and many more were considered. Imagine how different the movie would've been with any of these ladies!
8 Bosley's Speaker Box
Attentive super-fans of the original series may have noticed a particular piece of furniture that shows up in the film. Can you guess what it is?
In a visual nod to the original show, the speaker box resting on Bosley's desk is almost identical to the one featured in the TV series. The shape and color are the same, with the only small difference being the absence of a small bell pattern found on the speaker from the movie. Other than that, the speaker proves the series and film belong to the same universe!
7 Vivian Wood's Original Origins
In one of the earliest drafts of the screenplay (of which there were at least 30 versions according to McG), the character of Vivian Wood was written to be Asian. However, once Lucy Liu was cast as Alex Munday (beating out several actresses), Wood's character was rewritten to be caucasian. #AngelsSoWhite!
The role owas ultimately given to Kelly Lynch, but Wood was almost played by an original Angel. Kate Jackson, who played Sabrina Duncan on the TV series, asked to play Wood rather than reprise her original role.
6 The Original Angels Turned Down Cameos
Speaking of the original Angels, how many of you knew they were approached to appear in the film? How many of you know the reasons why the didn't?
When kindly asked to make cameo appearances in the film version, original Angels Jaclyn Smith, Farah Fawcett, and Kate Jackson politely declined. Fawcett was only interested in appearing if she could also provide the voice-over for Charlie. Jackson, as previously mentioned, wanted to play Vivian Wood instead. Smith eventually made an uncredited cameo in Full Throttle three years later.
5 Bill Murray's Altercations
For as genial as he always seems to be, Bill Murray was apparently a difficult dude to work with on Charlie's Angels.
One example includes director McG's claim that Murray physically attacked him on set, which Murray adamantly denies. However, a more public melee took place between Murray and costar Lucy Liu, which resulted in production shutting down for a day. Apparently, Murray loudly outburst impugned Lu's acting ability, which led to the scuffle. Murray again denies this ever taking place, instead blaming script issues and disagreements for the blowup.
4 Drew Barrymore's Money
Not that she was strapped for cash or anything, but do you have any idea how much money Drew Barrymore made for her work on Charlie's Angels?
In addition to her $9 million acting fee, Barrymore had the wise foresight to acquire the screen rights to the Charlie's Angels property long before filming ever began. The shrewd business decisions led to Barrymore earning roughly $40 million for the first film and nearly double that amount for the sequel. Charlie's Angels? Jeez, more like Charlie's Bankrolls!
3 Crispin Glover's Role
As originally written, the character of The Thin Man was slated to have some spoken dialogue. However, once the eccentric Crispin Glover was cast, he declared how much he disliked the lines and asked them to be removed. McG agreed and allowed Glover to run with the character.
As a result, Glover essentially rewrote the role himself. It was Glover's idea to give The Thin Man several of the strange peccadillos he shows onscreen. This includes having the character stealing tufts of hair, smelling them, and then randomly screaming for no particular reason.
2 The E.T. House
In one of the cooler cross-references, eagle-eyed fans of Drew Barrymore might be able to notice a familiar location from one of her most famous movies.
When Dylan (Barrymore) rolls down the hill and loses almost all of her clothing in the process, she ends up directly in front of a house with two boys playing videogames. It is the same house used in the film E.T., which Barrymore starred in as a six-year-old child. If you look really close, you can notice E.T.'s favorite candy as well, a bowl of Reese's Pieces, casually placed onscreen!
1 The Harry Potter Connection
Even before a single Harry Potter film was released, Drew Barrymore wasn't afraid to show that she was a Potterhead!
Not only did Barrymore constantly read snippets of the books to cast and crew members while filming, but she also disguised herself as Harry Potter during one scene. At the beginning of the movie, during the montage of previous jobs held by the characters, a quick shot of Barrymore dressed as The Boy Who Lived can be spotted. She's regaled with the full robe, round glasses, and black hair. What a surprise cameo, indeed!