'It Was Earth-Shattering': Chris Pine Recalls The Relatively Modest Amount Of Money He Made For The Princess Diaries 2 And How It Changed His Life

 Chris Pine in Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement.
Chris Pine in Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement.

The Princess Diaries movies are two of the best rom-coms, and nostalgia has only made them grow fonder in the hearts of fans. Anne Hathaway has looked back on her teenage experience making the movies in a positive light, as they launched her to superstardom. Apparently, they were also very important to Chris Pine, who played the love interest in Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement. He was a struggling actor when he was cast in the film, and he's admitted to being "terrified" to work on it. Now, he's opened up about why the payday for the movie was life-changing for him at the time.

In a recent interview with The Today Show, Pine talked about his directorial debut Poolman, as well as his early acting role and rise to fame in the 2000s. Before landing the role in Princess Diaries 2, the heartthrob was in serious debt, debating on asking his parents for money. However, this changed when he got a modest, but significant paycheck for the Hathaway-led teen flick. He reflected on the experience saying:

It was the height of summer and I was getting off at Magnolia. I was on my little Verizon tiny little flip phone, my silver one and I got a call from my agents that I booked the job. I pulled over onto the side of the freeway and they said, ‘You’re getting paid $65,000,’ And it was like they had just told me I’d made $50 million. It was absolutely Earth-shattering.

For context, $65,000 for a regular job that likely only lasts a few months is a hefty sum. However, in the world of acting, it is on the lower end, especially for a young actor in a principal role. Roles are few and far between, especially when you are just starting off, and it could be months, or even years before an actor lands a paying gig on the big screen again. A big-name actor like Chris Pine would probably not take a job paying only $65,000 now, unless it was truly a passion project.

But at the time, the check was truly life-changing. Not only could Pine pay off his debts and support himself at least for a while, but the high-profile nature of the film would likely lead to other work. With everything the Don’t Worry Darling actor ended up owing in debts and taxes and everything else, the payday was even less than the stated sum. However, this still was huge for him, and he remembers the project as something that set him on a positive path. He said:

I got that $65,000 and I just remember distinctly knowing in that moment that my life had changed somehow, even though $60,000 at the end of the day turned out to be about $15,000.

Not only was this moment memorable for Chris Pine, but it was also memorable for fans as well. Pine and Hathaway had electric rom-com chemistry, and fans desperately want them to star in another rom-com together. Plus, the film remains one of the best enemies-to-lovers stories ever.

Pine's Sir Nicholas character isn’t as easy to play as it may appear. He had to be both charming and slimy, eventually winning over the heart of Princess Mia as well as the audience. It could only be done by someone like Pine, whose charisma is just on fire in the role.

It’s nice to hear that the movie played as much of an important role in the Star Trek star’s life as it did the fans.

You can revisit The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement and Chris Pine’s dashing performance in it with a Disney+ subscription. You can also check out the 43-year-old in Poolman, which is in theaters nationwide. For more information on other exciting titles heading to cinemas and streaming in the near future, make sure to consult our 2024 movie schedule.