A post Tarantino 90’s indie with no guns, gangsters, no Mexican standoffs? No shit.

Before Brad Pitt was Brad Pitt, he was James Le Gros?

Well… sort of. Before Brad Pitt’s abs catapulted him from THELMA & LOUISE to super stardom,  he did a low budget indie movie JOHNNY SUEDE. This was after the chick flick road pic had camera wrapped but still in post production. Tom DiCillo, the writer and director on Suede remembers it being the only film credit Pitt had listed on his resume. He cast Pitt regardless.

DiCillo’s next movie was LIVING IN OBLIVION. It’s a sharply observed black comedy about making an indie movie. A must for any fledgling movie maker, mainly maneuvering minefields and the pitfalls between the pretentious and the prima donnas on both sides of the camera. There’s also a lot of great actors in the early phase of their career.

James LeGros plays a character named Chad Palomino, the lead actor of the movie within the movie. This scene demonstrates how LeGros plays Chad as a kind of dim witted, narcissistic egomaniac. Chad’s constantly suggesting ideas to his scenes. It soon becomes increasingly obvious these ideas are attempts at upstaging the other actors. LeGros is hilarious in the role.

James LeGros as Chad Palomino: “Seen me in VELMA & LUCY?”

When industry people who’d worked on the aforementioned Pitt flicks began seeing Oblivion, apparently not just a few viewers began to recognize the behavior behind Chad Palomino. Nor was it missed this person’s first named rhymed with Chad. To those in the know, it didn’t take whichever fictional detective of your generation’s pop culture reference to put the pieces together. As one insider stated, “Even Stevie Wonder can see Palomino is Pitt.”

During production and these early industry screenings, Tom DiCillo cheekily did nothing to confirm or deny this alleged rumor. However, in the time it took for Oblivion get distribution, Thelma & Louise had come out, as well as COOL WORLD, A RIVER RUNS THROUGH IT, KALIFORNIA, TRUE ROMANCE, and INTERVIEW WITH A VAMPIRE were released into theaters. Brad Pitt had become Brad Pitt. At that level of stardom comes power.

Due to Palomino’s – I mean Pitt’s – rising cache, when it came around to record commentary for the DVD release of Oblivion, DiCillo goes on record denying Chad is based on Brad. He’s unable to explain how so many people gleaned the similarities themselves when watching it. LeGros won’t spill the beans on the topic. That leaves only one man who can say for sure.

And his name rhymes with Chad.

LIVING IN OBLIVION: Catherine Keener, James LeGros, Steve Buscemi, & Dermot Mulroney

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s