August: Osage County is being touted as one of the best movies this year, but being the best, it seems, has its intrigues. A source told the National Enquirer that Julia Roberts meddled with the film’s ending by making sure she got to be the last one seen, up close while driving away at film’s end, replacing her co-star Meryl Streep. This move has said to have angered Streep so much that she vowed never to work with The Pretty Woman star ever again.
The original ending was supposedly a haunting and wistful shot of Meryl looking very sadly at Julia’s departing car which the Enquirer reveals did not test well with audience. This left an opening for Julia to let Osage County director John Wells know that her scene could be substituted for a better, more heart-rending, nostalgic ending. The move left Meryl’s scene off the ending. Julia in, Meryl out. Julia wins, Meryl pouts.
This development allegedly led to Meryl’s no show at the Toronto International Film Festival which was immediately shot down as the seventeen-time Oscar nominee and three-time Oscar winner was, in fact, feeling under the weather and thus couldn’t make the trip to the festival. However, her absence did not stop the critics present at the festival to rave about Meryl’s fantastic performance along with her co-actors Julia, Juliette Lewis, Ewan McGregor and Dermot Mulroney. Further, Julia had nothing but raves for Meryl’s work ethic and professionalism telling the NY Daily News, “It was an honor and a dream to know and work with Meryl.”
The buzz is that Meryl would most likely win in next year’s Oscar Best Actress race while Julia has a good chance of scoring a win in the Supporting Actress category.
True or not, the Enquirer story is still good publicity for the movie. Truth to tell, it’s quite hard to imagine Meryl throwing down about something as petty as her film’s ending. The 64-year old actress is a veteran and a professional who knows the business so well that this kerfuffle would hardly ruffle her majestic feathers. Besides, Meryl is so liked and respected in the industry that no one would pull a stunt like that to shade the Oscar favorite.
Overall, it’s Meryl for the win. Will you be watching August: Osage County? I will. See you at the cinema.