It seems that not a lot of people have actually gone out of their way to go and see Robert Downey Jr.’s Dolittle, based on the fact that the would-be blockbuster has still failed to crack $100 million at the global box office after more than two weeks in theaters. That being said, plenty of folks have nonetheless heard the countless tales of disaster surrounding RDJ’s first post-MCU outing, including the extensive and costly reshoots that drove the budget up to $175 million in an ultimately failed attempt to try and salvage the movie, which is already poised to go down as the biggest dud of 2020.
Dolittle looks like it’ll find its way into Hollywood folklore as one of those fascinatingly misguided, vanity-driven failures alongside the likes of Battlefield Earth and Cats, with the behind-the-scenes turmoil enduring for much longer than anything that actually happened onscreen. The fantasy epic was destroyed by critics and ignored by audiences, and yet the ending has managed to capture the internet’s attention.
In what will likely go down as one of the most bizarre scenes to be found in any movie in recent memory, the conclusion of Dolittle finds the title character performing a colonoscopy on a dragon, resulting in the removal of a set of bagpipes and a heavy dose of flatulence for his troubles. If that doesn’t sound incredible enough, a new report highlights the fact that this was one of the most difficult scenes for the creative team to come up with during reshoots, with plenty of ideas being floated around for what the animal whisperer could pull out of a dragon’s rear-end.
“The ending vexed the movie-makers. Even when it was decided that the dragon was constipated, there was a debate over logistics. One cut, according to sources, featured Dolittle removing a boulder-sized stool out of the dragon. In the end, the film showed bagpipes as the constipating culprit, with the good doctor enduring a windful of gas.”
It simply boggles the mind that this is the best they could come up with, especially given the talent involved. Downey Jr. is one of the biggest names in the business, director Stephen Gaghan won an Academy Award for writing Traffic and was nominated again for scripting Syriana, while the reshoots reportedly roped in Seth Rogen, his Neighbors co-writer Brendan O’Brien and The LEGO Movie’s Chris McKay in an attempt to salvage Dolittle, which had been shaping up as a disaster for quite some time. But unfortunately, not even they could save it.