The Real Reason Bill Murray Didn’t Do Charlie’s Angels 2

Murray-LuiI still feel stupid about it, but the first Charlie’s Angels movie actually caught me by surprise. I enjoyed it, I thought it was fun, lighthearted and Crispin Glover rocked in it. Now, everyone knows that the sequel completely sucked, so it’s for the best that Bill Murray wasn’t there to reprise his role as Bosley. I’ve heard several explanations gives for why he wasn’t there… but while surfing around the web this evening I came across this:

Bill Murray and Lucy Liu didn’t get along on the set of the first Charlie’s Angels. Bill was always uncomfortable around her and nobody knew why until one day a huge fight erupted between the two while they were filming a scene. People Magazine reported the Bill ‘loudly complained about her technique.’ People was being gentle.

What actually transpired was much more intense. Bill Murray stopped a scene in progress and pointed to Drew Barrymore, Cameron Diaz, and Lucy Liu saying in order, “I get why you’re here, and you’ve got talent….but what in the hell are you doing here. You can’t act!” At that, Liu blew her lid and attacked Murray, wildly throwing punches. The actors had to be separated to opposite corners of the room while they lobbed verbal hand grenades at each other.

With a Columbia Pictures gun to their heads, both actors would publicly downplay in incident but insiders know better. Bill Murray would not do any sequel with Liu attached and was subsequently replaced by Bernie Mac.

HAHA! Ok, I love Bill Murray to the point of man crush… but that really was a son-of-a-bitch thing to say to a person you’re there working with. And you gotta admire the balls Lucy Lui has to not take shit from anyone… including the immortal Bill Murray… and will take swings at any mother fucker bitching her in front of her co-workers.

Still… Murray is hilarious. (source: Derober)

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54 thoughts on “The Real Reason Bill Murray Didn’t Do Charlie’s Angels 2

  1. The movie follows a team of three female super-spies working for a mysterious unseen millionaire named Charlie, aided by their handler Bosley (Murray). The Angels are sent to save a captured software genius, infiltrating high-class parties and communications companies along the way. There are some twists and turns and kung fu fights with a hair surprisingly slender man, but the girls always triumph in the end, just like the original television show (not to mention the sequel,  The movie was a box office hit, which is even more impressive given that the team behind it was relatively new to Hollywood. No wonder they had so many behind-the-scenes tales.

  2. When was the last time you saw Lucy Liu in a major film role? She is past 40, and she was never a leading female type. As a former actor I would never do what Bill Murray did. Just go in, do your job, and be kind to all on the set. At home you can vent all you want in private.

  3. Who’s Bill Murray again? Let’s face it he’s had some forgetful performances as well. Lucy Liu can act. Old Murray was probably more off put by her ethnicity than her acting. You know, kind of like when you’ve never been around someone or know too much of a certain “race” and then you meet them in the flesh and it’s like you’re meeting an alien from outer space. Akward Murray just ripped her a new $&@%# because he’s not used to her “kind”.

  4. You do realise those are roles she plays and lucy can act I don’t know about you but people who rise to fame have both talent and gusto with determination and sorry but no offence but most of Bill Murray’s role are off putting for young children even sometimes ghostbusters. =( God some people are so stupid.

  5. Drew waas NO CHARLIE’s ANGEL…she is not qualified to lick Jacklyn Smith’s feet. Lucy is a bitch and can’t act. Bill was just being honest

  6. Lucy Liu can’t act. I finally realized that’s why I am so put off by her character, Joan Watson, on Elementary. I’ve stopped watching the show with regularity because I just don’t want to watch her. I do love her in Kill Bill though — not much acting required there, I guess.

  7. Pezzo di m****a sì! Giuro che non guarderò mai più un film con Bill Murray! E poi Lucy Liu è talentuosa, bella e davvero brillante in questo film e in tanti altri! E dire una cosa del genere durante una produzione e nei confronti di una collega poi.. significa non avere alcun rispetto! Razzista, vecchiaccio, presuntuoso e faccione insulso!!!!

  8. Damn, I didn't know about that. Now I get why he wasn't in the sequel, however he made a cameo in the movie with a picture of him in a scene with Bosley (Bernie Mac) and his mom…which was weird and confusing when I 1st saw it. Even though this sounds crazy for Bill to pull that type of chaos with the actresses. But still, it's Bill Murray, the man of Stripes, Ghostbusters, and Groundhog Day. I love the guy, we all do.

  9. Damn, I didn't know about that. Now I get why he wasn't in the sequel, however he made a cameo in the movie with a picture of him in a scene with Bosley (Bernie Mac) and his mom…which was weird and confusing when I 1st saw it. Even though this sounds crazy for Bill to pull that type of chaos with the actresses. But still, it's Bill Murray, the man of Stripes, Ghostbusters, and Groundhog Day. I love the guy, we all do.

  10. Damn, I didn't know about that. Now I get why he wasn't in the sequel, however he made a cameo in the movie with a picture of him in a scene with Bosley (Bernie Mac) and his mom…which was weird and confusing when I 1st saw it. Even though this sounds crazy for Bill to pull that type of chaos with the actresses. But still, it's Bill Murray, the man of Stripes, Ghostbusters, and Groundhog Day. I love the guy, we all do.

  11. First, This is not Patrick Stewart or Bob Hoskins doing Shakespeare or Ibsen. It is a Hollywood Movie made for the enjoyment of the audience with critics a distant consideration. As a friend of mine once said, “I don’t care if the movie had any socially redeeming value, I liked it.” I don’t doubt that Bill Murray is a better actor than Lucy Lu. Mr. Bill Murray should not doubt that she is much more pleasant to look at than he is. I might laugh at his genius, but I smile inside and out when I see Lucy on the screen.

    Get over yourself Bill. Not much more than 100 years ago actors were considered part of the lowest level of the Western society’s social hierarchy, along with pimps, street prostitutes, beggars, thieves, and gypsies. Or, has film rewritten this historical truth as well?

  12. He’s Bill Murray! He is a true veteran of film. I personally don’t see what the big deal is. I’m a pre-med student and I worked last summer with doctors in a hospital setting. When I messed up or wasn’t to the performance of their liking, they cursed at me and told me to stop BS around. I became a stronger and much more efficient person because of that. Lucy Liu hadn’t been in anything substantial prior to Charlie’s Angels (Barrymore and Diaz had!), Murray was trying to toughen her up, yet she reacted in the most childlike way possible. Overall, I would liken this to Gene Kelly yelling at Debbie Reynolds to get her act together in “Singing in the Rain”, except Debbie Reynolds actually put effort after each chiding, and through her extra effort, made the film a classic!

  13. I was just watching the first movie on netflix and wondered why he did not do the second, thanks for the scoop! Silly way to react to someone being snarky, better to ignore it, one up them verbally or thank them for their comment sincerely and make them the flaming turd. Of course coming to blows from her end is just an incident, no doubt if it was reversed Murray would have been tossed in jail.

  14. well bill murray sounds like a douche. There is no reason for anyone to be outright rude to somebody’s face. Who does he think he is to pass judgement on the three of them as if he is some kind of higher being, ego problem, he deserved to get punched. As for Lucy Liu I think she was really good in Ally mcbeal and in the film “3 needles”

  15. I’m probably posting this for void space and no one will ever read this post, but I’ll fill better. There comes a point in ones life that they have to be told where they stand with their career. Just so happen an actor that has some chops told an actress she sucks. Anyone think the reason she attack Bill was because he hit close to home. And good for him. If I was a doctor and someone walked up to me and told me I totally tanked at a lifesaver, just look at your numbers, some people just need that wake up call.

  16. ZIOMEK, you’ve missed RUSHMORE, the movie that actually reinvented Bill Murray. I dont know about his arrogance, but for a guy who has worked in 4 out of 5 movies of Wes Anderson, I must say I have a lot of respect for him. Besides, he’s been doing comedy since the time Cameron, Lucy and Drew were little kids. Maybe he was just trying to guide them…

  17. Er… A lad who said Bill didn’t have a hit since early 90’s must have a black hole in his head.

    Try Broken Flowers and Lost in Translation, dumbo. For all of you who think he can’t play great.

    And yeah, Lucy didn’t deserve to be treated this way, but you gotta admit she’s the most wooden of Angels.

  18. I think we’re not in a true position to judge here, since we don’t know the full background here. What if Liu had been badmouthing Murray to every person on set behind his back for weeks? Would it still make Murray the bad guy here? What if she really had been the only one on set holding things up, making mistakes and wasting everyone’s time, and Murray was just the guy who said what everyone was thinking?

    Depending on the background, Murray could either be justified or just a dick. Hard to say really, because that one comment really depends on the context.

    Mind you, I think regardless of context Liu was totally out of line to take a verbal argument into a physical attack. There’s plenty of other things she could have said or done without coming to blows with him.

    Liu isn’t 5 years old, she should be able to take some criticism, however harsh and cruel it may be. Had the roles been reversed, nobody would justify Murray deciding to just belt Liu in the mouth if she said something mean to him.

  19. But even if she isn’t that good, he is one of the last people whoshould have the right to say it. Every movie he is in , he is just stale, dosn;t say much of anything. Just walks around with a sad confused , dopey look on his face while other people handle the actual dialouge, and acting. He never stretches his abilities. I have never seen him do a role that was hard or demanding. Anyone do do the roles he has done. Translation, to broken flowers, he is the same guy in every movie. In my opinion his oscar nod was a fluke, and thank god he didn;t win. BTW, what the hell is he doing with his carrer today.?

  20. Why is the assumption made that the comment in seriousness? This isn’t Tom Cruise we’re talking about. This is Bill Murray! It’s really odd how he is praised for how he delivers every line in a snide and hilariously condescending manner, but when he says it in print then people assume he’s being malicious.

    BTW. If people really want to dissect his words then he also called Cameron Diaz a dumb blond and Drew Barrymore an ugly talent. I really think this has less to do with Murray being an ass and is more about Lucy Liu having absolutely no sense of humor.

  21. Murray’s behavior was unprofessional, unethical and just plain mean. I really enjoy Murray on screen but there is a special place in Hell reserved for people who publicly humiliate anyone. I hate people who feel they have to exploit the weaknesses of others to get ahead. Let your own talents and hard work be the key to success.

  22. I think we should throw Shyamalan, Murray, and J-Lo in a room and force them to make a movie together. They could just sit around and fight over which one of them is more pretentious and a bigger egomaniac. Of course there would be a twist at the end with Shyamalan writing/directing: maybe Murray would be funny again.

  23. Yet another reason to avoid Bill’s movies. What a jackass. He hasn’t carried a hit since the early 90’s*, and it was the early 80’s before that. And the writers and directors of those movies are likely due more credit for their successes. He used to be funny but now he just appears to be an asshole that has believed too many things his groupies have told him over the years. He sounds like he has the self entitlement of a snotty pop diva.

    * I’m omitting Lost in Translation here because I don’t consider it a Murray-driven vehicle. Coppala deserves that credit.

  24. The first Angel-film was ridiculous, but hey, it was kind of charming because it was so cheesy. It doesn’t have a brain in it’s head, but I didn’t really mind. It don’t own it on DVD, I don’t particularly like it, but I don’t mind it.
    The second one however was pure and utter shit. It had no charme whatsoever, Demi Moore was awful, the action was lame and there just was no story.
    From what I’ve heard they basically shot that thing without a script and then tried to beat some kind of structure into it later in editing. Didn’t really work.

  25. @Gutpunch:
    “Those who poo poo on these films (Charlie’s Angels) and jack off to Die Hard, Transporter and other male oriented action films clearly have some women issues

    Well, when you have a TV show that shows great looking women who are smart, sharp and can take care of themselves with occasional camp moments as opposed to the movies where the Angels are dumb, dull and can take care of themselves by way of CGI, rapid editing and kung fu wirework, with camp from start to finish while in the process of degrading themselves, well, yes, some people like myself might have an issue or two with that.

    I am one of those people.

    Just because I disliked Charlies Angels 1 & 2 , does not necessarily mean I dislike films or TV shows where there’s a female lead (or two or three) who can kick some butt. Nothing can be farther from the truth.

  26. The Charlie´s Angels movies are pure bliss. 100% unadulterated popcorn entertainment in its purest form.
    I wish they would make more of them. Those angels kick ass.

    Those who poo poo on these films and jack off to Die Hard, Transporter and other male oriented action films clearly have some women issues.

  27. While this isn’t exactly a hot news flash, I will agree that Bill Murray should have kept quiet. While there is that old saying ‘If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything..’, and regardless of whether or not Lucy Liu can act or not, and regardless if Lucy would have kicked Bill in the nads like her characters do in her varied work…

    Charlie’s Angels was a piece of pure horseshit, flies included.
    Lucy was in a bad film. Bill was in a bad film. He says to Drew “I understand why you’re here”…No No No. What in the hell were they ALL doing there under the direction of McG to begin with should be the real question.

    I hated the movie.

    Yes, Bill should have zipped it.
    Yes, he did himself a service by not appearing in the sequel, which was just as dumb as its predecessor.

    BTW, this post has caused a flood of memory, so I must ask:
    If we feel that Bill Murray was in the wrong here, why do we applaud other actors who openly bitch to their directors, even if those directors (or actors) may be acting like pricks at the time?

  28. This is not at all unusual when you work this closely with someone. I’ve done a morning radio show for 6 years and had three co-hosts in that time.

    With two of them, I’ve had at least one major fight where we’re yelling and screaming at each other (never on the air of course).

    The third was only here for three months so I guess we weren’t around each other long enough.

  29. Like you John, I found myself liking Charlie’s Angels. Got to love a film which takes you by surprise (bit like getting a PS3 for Christmas when expecting a DS).

    Such a shame that Murray is that far up himself, he has to belittle his co-workers. They’re not doing Shakespeare! This was admittedly a cheesy film and to be fair, “acting” bad or otherwise, had nothing to do with it.

  30. You’re right John, Lucy Liu may not win an oscar anytime soon, but she’s more than able to stand her ground against Cameron Diaz.

    I don’t actually see the news here however. This was known for years, it’s not like it was just revealed or something. I knew that the feud with Liu was the reason for Murray to not do the sequel and I’m certainly no Hollywood insider.

    Bill Murray by the way is loathed by film crews everywhere for his excentric and outlandish behavior on set. From what I have heard he is one of the most difficult actors to work with.
    There even was an incident at a press conference for THE LIFE AQUATIC, where a crew member suddenly turned up and started cursing at Murray, calling him a “bastard” and “a pain in the ass”.

  31. I’m sorry… but just because Bill Murray is popular doesn’t give him license to act like a fuck tard.

    Belittling people in front of their co-workers is a jackass and totally pussy thing to do… even if it’s Bill Murray.

    And I’m sorry… but If Bill Murray is calling Cameron Diaz “talented” then I don’t exactly trust his ability to evaluate talent.

  32. I don’t admire Lucy Liu for this at all. If the roles were reversed and Billy Murray started violently punching Lucy Liu for a remark you wouldn’t be cheering.

    Also it’s pretty obvious it had been brewing for a while and Murray had enough of her crap. Yes I take his side. She has always set off my bitch detector.

  33. Wow! Well I don’t necessarily agree in him picking on Lucy Liu’s acting, but I definitely love that he went anti-hollywood and actually said what he was thinking.

    Now, lets figure out how to get Lindsey Lohan and Jessica Alba to costar with him. They could use the wake up call.

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