Michelle Pfeiffer Says She Lived on 'Tomato Soup and Marlboros' While Playing a Drug Addict in 'Scarface'
By Desiree Murphy
Michelle Pfeiffer is getting candid about the unhealthy way she prepared for Scarface.
In celebration of the film's 35th anniversary, the 59-year-old actress and her former co-stars, Al Pacino and Steven Bauer, appeared on a Tribeca Film Festival panel Thursday night in New York City with director Brian De Palma, where she opened up about what it was really like portraying the role of cocaine addict Elvira Hancock.
“Well, OK," Pfeiffer responded, when moderator Jesse Kornbluth asked how much she weighed at the time. "I don’t know, but I was playing a cocaine addict, so that was part of the physicality of the part, which you have to consider. The movie was only supposed to be, what? A three-month, four-month [shoot]? Of course, I tried to time it so that as the movie went on, I became thinner and thinner and more emaciated."
Pfeiffer continued on, explaining that because the movie ended up going on for six months, she was "starving" by the end of it.
"The one scene that was the end of the film where I needed to be my thinnest, it was [pushed to the] next week, and then it was the next week, and then it was the next week," she recalled, according to USA Today. "I literally had members of the crew bringing me bagels because they were all worried about me and how thin I was getting. I think I was living on tomato soup and Marlboros."
At the #Scarface 35th anniversary panel, the moderator was booed when he asked Michelle Pfeiffer how much she weighed while shooting the movie. Pfeiffer didn’t give a number, but said she “was living off tomato soup and Marlboros.” #tribeca2018pic.twitter.com/GKl9hOvlze
Last March, Pfeiffer posed for Interview, her first cover shoot with the magazine since 1988. In her accompanying interview, she revealed why she was "terrified" on the set of Scarface.
"I think I was able to hide behind the tough exterior of that character, who was just sort of tuned out and tuned off, drugged," she recalled. "Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio and I were really the only females. It was a boys' club. And it was also the nature of the relationship, for Tony Montana to be very dismissive of my character. So, I would go to sleep some nights crying."