Endorphins make you happy — and so do behind-the-scenes photos from Legally Blonde. Reese Witherspoon shared a string of throwback snaps in honor of the film’s 20th anniversary, but fans quickly noticed that a couple of the pictures were not like the others.
“Omigod you guys … #LegallyBlonde premiered 20 years ago TODAY!” the Big Little Lies alum, 45, wrote via Instagram on Tuesday, July 13, alongside a carousel of pictures from the beloved comedy. “Time flies when you’re busy using legal jargon in your every day life.”
Some of the photographs were well known — a slide of the actress in character as Elle Woods holding Bruiser the dog, for example — but a couple of them did not appear in the film as it was seen by audiences.
In a recent interview with The New York Times, screenwriter Karen McCullah revealed that the movie had an alternate ending where Elle and Vivian were shown a year later, promoting their latest project together.
“Elle and Vivian were good friends, and Vivian’s now blonde,” McCullah, 54, told the newspaper. “They had started the Blond Legal Defense Club and were handing out fliers in the quad because that was the ending in Amanda’s [Brown, the author of the novel the movie is based on] manuscript.”
Kirsten Smith, the film’s other writer, said that another proposed ending would have shown Elle and Emmett in a passionate embrace. “One of the versions ended with Emmett and Elle kissing,” the Ella Enchanted screenwriter, 50, recalled. “We screened the movie two or three times, and every time people didn’t want to end it with a kiss. They thought it wasn’t a story about [Elle] getting a boyfriend, which was really cool to have people say that.”
Actress Jessica Cauffiel, who played Elle’s friend Margot, claimed in the same interview that a third alternate ending implied that Elle and Vivian had gotten together as a couple.
“The first ending was Elle and Vivian in Hawaii in beach chairs, drinking margaritas and holding hands,” the White Chicks star, 45, said “The insinuation was either they were best friends or they had gotten together romantically.”
McCullah, however, later denied this in a tweet responding to a story about Cauffiel’s recollection. “I wrote the movie,” she wrote on Thursday, July 8. “I’m in the picture you just posted. The actress quoted was incorrect.”
The She’s the Man writer later told Entertainment Weekly that she didn’t want fans to be sad that the movie didn’t end with Vivian and Elle dating because such an ending never existed at all.
“It made me sad to see people mourning something that never existed, and being sad that it was taken from them,” she explained on Friday, July 9. “So I just wanted to clear that up. Don’t be sad!”