Michael Douglas says Debra Winger lost Romancing the Stone role after biting his arm

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·2-min read
Michael Douglas says Debra Winger lost Romancing the Stone role after biting his arm
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Michael Douglas said Debra Winger was set to star in the 1984 classic Romancing the Stone but lost out on the part to Kathleen Turner after a bizarre biting moment.

In the film, Turner plays a romantic-adventure writer who heads to the Colombian jungle in order to save her sister with some help from a brash mercenary called Jack (Douglas).

During an appearance on the podcast Literally! With Rob Lowe, Douglas explained that Winger was living in a hospital when they met in the Eighties in order to go method for her role as a terminally ill woman in Terms of Endearment.

“[Winger] comes with us to have dinner one night and we’re knocking back tequilas,” Douglas said.

“We walk out and, just as you would kind of go ‘Oh you!’ and give someone a punch in the arm, she goes ‘Oh you!’ and she reaches over and she bites me – on my arm. I’m like, ‘Aaargh!’

“She bites me. She’s joking and I’m looking at her thinking, ‘I don’t know, this could be rough, she’s broken the skin!’”

Douglas, 77, continued to say that he went back to the director Robert Zemeckis and the studio and said he couldn’t star alongside Winger after the biting episode.

Kathleen Turner and Michael Douglas on the set of Romancing The Stone (20th Century Fox)
Kathleen Turner and Michael Douglas on the set of Romancing The Stone (20th Century Fox)

“I break down in tears and say, ‘I can’t go to the jungle with her – she bit me on the arm! I can’t do it – it’s not worth it!’ So they said, ‘OK, all right.’”

Lowe responded to Douglas’ story saying: “By the way, this is now officially my favourite episode of the podcast. Period.”

Douglas recently celebrated the 30th anniversary of Basic Instinct, noting in his post on Instagram that there had been “a little controversy along the way”.

His co-star Sharon Stone has claimed she was tricked into showing her bare crotch during filming, and that she “slapped” director Verhoeven across the face when she saw that it was in shot in a preview screening.

Verhoeven has maintained that “Sharon is lying” about being misled as to how revealing the scene would be. “Any actress knows what she’s going to see if you ask her to take off her underwear and point there with the camera,” he told Icon in 2017.

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