*George Clooney, Tim Blake Nelson and John Turturro reunited for a 15 anniversary screening of the Coen brothers’ classic Southern fable, “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” at the New York Film Festival Tuesday, The cast and filmmakers delighted the audience by swapping stories about their fondest and most curious of memories from the production, including the fact that there were Black actors under the hoods in the KKK scenes.
According to The Grio, Clooney, who played escaped convict Ulysses in the 2000 film, said that he remembered “shooting the [Ku Klux] Klan rally at night in Los Angeles, right below Van Nuys airport – you’re just trying to picture what plane is flying over!”
“We had hired a formation troupe of military guys who march, and a lot of those guys were black and said, ‘This is the freakiest thing!’” Joel Coen, of the Coen Brothers directing duo, added.
Clooney laughed and continued, “You’d be at the craft services table and there’d be a bunch of black guys with Klan hoods getting food!”
The Coen Brothers reflected on George, saying he hasn’t changed much since “O Brother.” He’s still the same prankster with a great sense of humor.
“Same sense of humor, the same understanding of the material that we do,” Joel said. “George is a big movie star, but he’s got a complete lack of vanity when he comes to work with us, which is really interesting and charming. He’s perfectly willing to go wherever we ask him to, which is the mark of a real actor.”
The filmmakers confessed that they were a bit nervous about revisiting the film, since they almost never go back to look at old material.
“Generally when you look at old movies – I’m sure this will happen tonight – what you really see are the things you f—ed up,” Joel admitted.