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Ben Stiller 'still haunted' by 1992 film he lost out on

Jake Massey

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Ben Stiller 'still haunted' by 1992 film he lost out on

Featured Image Credit: Sipa US/Alamy Stock Photo/TODAY

Ben Stiller has certainly kept himself busy over the past few decades.

He was in all three Night at the Museum movies, three Meet the Parents filmsAnchorman, Dodgeball, Tropic Thunder, as well as seasons of Curb Your Enthusiasm and Arrested Development, and much, much more.

He's also done plenty of writing, producing and directing.

However, he has admitted that a part he missed out on early on his career still haunts him to this day.

Stiller said he 'tanked' the audition. Credit: Newscom/Alamy Stock Photo
Stiller said he 'tanked' the audition. Credit: Newscom/Alamy Stock Photo

Speaking during a Q&A for AppleTV+ series Severance - which he directs - the 56-year-old said, as per IndieWire: "I tanked my third callback for My Cousin Vinny to play the friend.

"It still bothers me. You go in as an actor and you do your thing and you sometimes feel really good about it and it just doesn't work."

The comedy starred Joe Pesci, Ralph Macchio and Marisa Tomei, with the latter winning an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress.

While clearly Stiller would have loved to have been a part of the much-loved comedy, he admitted in a recent interview that he has been guilty of taking too much on, at the expense of his family.

Joe Pesci and Marisa Tomei in My Cousin Vinny. Credit: Alamy
Joe Pesci and Marisa Tomei in My Cousin Vinny. Credit: Alamy

On top of all the projects he's been involved in, Stiller has two children, and his eldest, Ella - born in 2002 - has held him to task over his absences during her childhood.

Speaking to Esquire in February, Stiller said: "She's [Ella] pretty articulate about it, and sometimes it's stuff that I don't want to hear. It's hard to hear.

"Because it's me not being there in the ways that I saw my parents not being there. And I had always thought, 'Well I won't do that'.

"But then it's that thing that, like, I was trying to navigate my own desire to fulfil the hopes and dreams I had, too. And that doesn't feel great, but it's important to acknowledge."

It seems then that even Hollywood stars are confronted with the difficulty of choosing between furthering their career and being around to raise their kids.

Stiller in 2001's Zoolander. Credit: Alamy
Stiller in 2001's Zoolander. Credit: Alamy

Nowadays, Stiller is trying to strike more of a balance.

He said: "What I've learned is that your kids are not keeping score on your career. It would be solipsistic to think that my kids actually care about that.

"They just want a parent who's emotionally present and supportive of them. That's probably what they want more than for me to be going off and pushing the bounds of my creativity."

Recent years have been tough for Stiller. In 2014 he was treated for prostate cancer, and the following year his mum died. In 2017 his seventeen-year marriage to Christine Taylor fell apart and they separated, and in 2020 his dad passed away.

The pandemic did have an unanticipated positive impact on Stiller and his family, though.

Lockdown restrictions meant he would be unable to see his kids, so they agreed he would move back into the family home. Now, Stiller and Taylor are back together.

"Over the course of time, it evolved," he said.

"We were separated and got back together and we're happy about that. It's been really wonderful for all of us. Unexpected, and one of the things that came out of the pandemic."

Topics: TV and Film

Jake Massey
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