- Share this article on Facebook
- Share this article on Twitter
- Share this article on Email
- Show additional share options
- Share this article on Print
- Share this article on Comment
- Share this article on Whatsapp
- Share this article on Linkedin
- Share this article on Reddit
- Share this article on Pinit
- Share this article on Tumblr
It’s not too much of a spoiler to reveal that Elisabeth Shue, who plays Bruce Willis’ wife in Eli Roth’s upcoming remake of the 1974 vigilante classic Death Wish, gets killed off early in the film.
“I get shot in the head,” she says of the film, which centers on a man avenging the brutal murder of his wife. “It’s very subtle, but then you see me dead in a hospital.” These days, though, portraying a slab on a gurney turns out to be easier than it was when Hope Lange did it in the original Charles Bronson film. For one thing, you don’t have to hold your breath anymore.
“They have special effects to stop your eyes and to stop your breathing,” the Battle of the Sexes actress says with a laugh. “That’s why you can’t see the breathing anymore.”
In other words, no more Psycho cutaways. To hide Janet Leigh’s visible breath when she was supposed to be dead in the shower, they ended up with one of movie-making’s most iconic scenes by cutting away to the showerhead with just the sound of running water.
Death Wish marks Shue’s second time dying onscreen. In 2005’s Hide and Seek, she was thrown out a second-story window to her death. And then there was her dead-but-then-not-dead work in The Saint. “I was supposed to die in The Saint,” she recalls. “I died but then they reshot it and I lived. They tested the movie and I guess audiences didn’t want me to die.”
Death Wish is set to hit theaters on March 2.
A version of this story first appeared in the Nov. 29 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.
Sign up for THR news straight to your inbox every day