Old School Americana & Nostalgia


Mark Wahlberg & Burt Reynolds Clashed on ‘Boogie Nights’ Set

Mark Wahlberg & Burt Reynolds Clashed on ‘Boogie Nights’ Set

Burt Reynolds was a huge movie star while Mark Wahlberg was still working on things heading into their movie Boogie Nights. In the movie directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, Reynolds plays porn film producer Jack Horner. Wahlberg, of course, plays Dirk Diggler, who goes from nightclub dishwasher to major porn star.

Well, Reynolds had some ideas about his role in Boogie Nights. The film – which came out in 1997 – did get bogged down when Reynolds had words for Anderson. They weren’t good words, either. Just getting Boogie Nights filmed and done became quite a headache.

Still, everyone had to put up with Reynolds’ behavior. Even Wahlberg was on the receiving end of a little Burt attitude. He talked about what went down in a recent interview.

“He was the biggest movie star in the world for over a decade,” Wahlberg said on the Happy Sad Confused podcast, ScreenRant reports. “(And) He just felt like it was so beneath him. He didn’t really understand the potential of this movie and that it was obviously set in the world of pornography, but it was about some very interesting characters and had a lot of potential to be something special and that Paul was a real talent, and so he just blew his top a couple of times.

Burt Reynolds Uses Wild Irish Accent

“I remember the first day. Paul comes to me, we’re about to shoot the scene where we meet in the back of the kitchen,” Wahlberg said. “Paul goes, ‘You know Burt came to me, and he doesn’t really understand my rhythm of writing, so he wants to use an Irish accent.’ I was like, ‘What?’ He was like, ‘Yeah he thinks this is going to be more helpful to kind of find the character and just go with it.’ I thought he was just pulling my leg.”

All a sudden, [imitating Burt Reynolds’ Irish accent] ‘Oh you’re a dancer aren’t you,’ and I started laughing. [imitating Burt Reynolds] ‘Don’t you ever laugh at me kid.’”

Touchy, aren’t you Burt? His attitude here, though, isn’t too surprising. Sally Field, who at one time was connected to Reynolds, has come out and talked about her time with him. He intimated for years that Field loved him and it hurt when they went their separate ways. Field has said that being around him was not an enjoyable experience.

This flies in the face of what has been portrayed publicly for a long time.

Anderson Was Clashing With Main Star

Anderson was constantly being tested by Reynolds. Now, Boogie Nights came out and presented Reynolds in one of his finer performances.

For playing this role, Reynolds earned his only Oscar nomination. If he would have won it, then Reynolds’ career could be capped with a sweet bow. He wasn’t even the first choice to play Horner. Bill Murray, Harvey Keitel, and Warren Beatty were asked to play Horner, But they all turned Anderson and his crew down.

Wahlberg is right in his assessment. Reynolds was blistering hot in the 1970s. Deliverance, Smokey and the Bandit, White Lightning, Hooper, The Longest Yard, and on and on it goes. At this time, when Reynolds’ name was on top of the film marquee, then a film would be a hit. Reynolds even felt so confident that he posed nude for Cosmopolitan magazine.

Also, Reynolds was involved in a long-term relationship with singer-actress Dinah Shore. His career and popularity would meet up with old-school Hollywood entertainment. Reynolds became friends with people like Groucho Marx and Jack Benny, who never would be seen in films with him.

Reynolds also had a decent television career. He first gained attention on Gunsmoke, then starred as a private eye detective. This included his time as Dan August. But his movie career remains something his fans look at with great joy and happiness.