Screenwriters expend a lot of time and effort to craft perfect scripts. However, some of the silver screen’s most memorable lines were actually ad-libbed by the actors. There were many to choose from, but we’ve gathered a dozen of the best improvised moments in movie history to share with you.
One of the delights of making a movie with experienced comedians trained in improv is that you’re going to end up with a whole lot of surprises. And because everyone is accustomed to thinking on their toes, these bits of improvisation can end up going pretty far out there.
Bridesmaids opened the door for a new breed of raunchy female-oriented romantic comedies that broke the mold for the genre, and some of its most memorable scenes were improvised. There was so much ad-libbing that director Paul Feig prepared for it by using two cameras for many of the one-on-one scenes, so he could capture and cut together both reactions. Many of Melissa McCarthy’s over-the-top moments during the dress fitting scene, as well as her banter with the air marshal on the plane, were all unscripted. But the improv winner in Bridesmaids is the horrible and hilarious scene where bride-to-be Lillian, played by Maya Rudolph, makes an unexpected stop in the middle of the street after getting food poisoning.
This unscripted and perfectly timed moment caught the cinematographer by surprise as much as it did the audience.
Matthew McConaughey has built an impressive filmography over the years, but no matter how many awards he wins, he’ll never escape the simple words he uttered during 1993’s Dazed and Confused.
It’s become one of the movie’s most quoted lines, and McConaughey improvised it on the spot. The actor claims to have based the line on an utterance by Doors frontman Jim Morrison during a live performance of the song “Roadhouse Blues.” Keep watching the video to see the best improvised moments in movie history!
Bridesmaids | 0:15
Dazed and Confused | 1:19
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers | 2:06
Avengers: Infinity War | 3:02
The Dark Knight | 4:08
Jaws | 5:03
The Shining | 5:49
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets | 6:41
Harrison Ford double shot | 7:39
When Harry Met Sally | 8:36
Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory | 9:41
This Is Spinal Tap | 10:31
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