Steve Carell says studio almost shut down '40-Year-Old Virgin', because he 'looked like a serial killer'

Jane Lynch and Steve Carell in The 40-Year-Old Virgin (Credit: Universal)
Jane Lynch and Steve Carell in The 40-Year-Old Virgin (Credit: Universal)

The 40-Year-Old Virgin almost had to re-think its lead actor, Steve Carell has revealed, because the ‘dailies’ sent to the studio by director Judd Apatow were not looking good.

In fact, according to the Anchorman star, they made him look ‘creepy’.

Carell played the affable but sexually inexperienced Andy Stitzer, alongside Seth Rogen and Paul Rudd, who, after discovering he is a virgin, decide to remedy the matter.

But after Universal saw what they were doing on set, they ‘shut down’ the production after its first week of shooting.

In a new profile on Carell in Esquire, he says: “The dailies of my character just looked too creepy. They said I looked like a serial killer.”


He goes on to say that other things about making the movie worried him too.

“I had a high school reunion just before the movie came out,” Carell went on. “I hadn’t seen these people in several years. And they’d start talking about what they’d been involved in, and I would mention that I just did this movie called 40-Year-Old Virgin, and as I reflect back, I realize how dumb it must have sounded to all of these people.

“It sounded like it might be the worst movie ever, just based on the title. I could feel my classmates feeling sorry for me. I could see the pity in their eyes.”

Luckily, it was a bit of a smash, not particularly creepy at all, and launched Carell as a leading man.

He’s next up playing former defence secretary Donald Rumsfeld in the Dick Cheney biopic Vice, due out in the UK on February 1, 2019.

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