Awards Season's Most Surprising Cameo: Donuts

Donut Comp - Publicity - H 2020
Claire Folger/Lionsgate; Adobe Stock

The sweet snack has a surprising amount of screen time in 'Knives Out' and 'Richard Jewell.'

One item has a cameo appearance in several films in the awards race: doughnuts.

In Knives Out, Daniel Craig's detective character goes on a tirade about a doughnut hole that is best described, as writer-director Rian Johnson says, as "a silly little speech that I almost cut from the script," but Craig convinced the helmer to keep it in.

"In murder mysteries, there's always a bit where the detective lays out some extended metaphor for the process of the case that doesn't make any sense, and the idea to center it around a doughnut always seemed fun," says Johnson, who reveals that doughnuts were served every Friday on set.

In Richard Jewell, the titular character, played by Paul Walter Hauser, breaks down at a diner when he finds out that the case against him is dismissed. "I said this to my reps and the producers: 'I want to cry while eating the doughnut and make sure we get at least one take of that,' " Hauser remembers. "I think that was the first take of several, the one that's in the movie."

This story first appeared in a January stand-alone issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. Click here to subscribe.