thus destroyed Shelley Duval in the filming of "The Shining"
Shelley Duvall was 28 years old when Stanley Kubrick chose her to star in "The Shining" along with Jack Nicholson. Stephen King, author of the novel, preferred Jessica Lange give life to the tough but naive wife of Jack Torrance, played by Jack Nicholson, a man in charge of watching a mountain hotel where loneliness and his own ghosts make him go crazy and make him a murderer. Duvall was a promising actress and Kubrick put her in his sights and made him spend the 13 worst months of his life, to the point that after the shoot he was destroyed, with a deep depression, which resulted in a mental illness from which To this day he has not been able to recover.
In an interview granted in 2016, Duvall did not want to go into details of the film but remembered that the shooting that was hell for all who worked on it: “There was a great cast. They were all wonderfully funny people ... but then there was Stanley Kubrick, the director of this iconic masterpiece. All I will say is that if the director had not done what he did, with such force and cruelty, he would not have obtained the same result in the film. ”
And it is that the director tried to take full advantage of his actors and used tactics, at least, questionable. From day one, he took any opportunity to punish Duvall and forbade the rest of the team to comfort her. Moreover, the slogan was that they ignore it whenever possible. I wanted to generate in her the feeling of loneliness, isolation and fear. Thus, Duvall was left alone, without friends in the toughest shoot of his life.
When the iconic image of the baseball bat arrived, in which the character of Jack Nicholson stalks and slowly moves towards his wife while she tries to escape, Kubrick never explained to Duvall what was going to happen, so her dread face when she saw what was happening was authentic, He had no time to discern whether it was reality or fiction.
In addition, he tortured her to exhaustion and forced her to repeat the scene 127 times, after which the actress ended up dehydrated from so much crying and exhausted for the amount of emotional ups and downs lived. That day he ended up with open wounds on the hands of grabbing the gun after Kubrick ordered them to repeat again and again until they managed to convey what he asked them to do.
The consequences of this situation came soon and the actress began to lose her hair from stress. The director never gave him a nice word, or thank you, quite the opposite. I wanted to keep her in continuous stress during filming. "Stanley pressed me and pressed me more than they had ever pressed me before. It is the most difficult role I have had to play. ”
Another of the moments of torture was the legendary scene of the door, in which an insane Jack Torrance tried to open the bathroom door with an ax to kill Wendy, while she tried to escape. This scene required three days of filming and also had to be repeated numerous times to achieve the perfect shot. 60 wooden doors were necessary and Nicholson would later confess that Duvall had made the role and hard effort he had seen in his life. He also recalled that she approached to show him how her hair was falling out and that she was constantly physically and mentally exhausted to meet the director's demands.
But if Kubrick was ruthless, the film critics were more so and they were primed with Duvall's performance, which they described as comic, over-acted and "comically bad." In fact, both the actress and the director They were nominated for the Golden Raspberry Awards, the Oscar for the worst films of the year. Such was the impact that Duvall went unnoticed for the general public for years and after making a couple more films, decided to withdraw from the film world.
He didn't even like it Stephen King, who felt so betrayed that he decided to create a television miniseries based on his novel in 1997 and he had to sign a document in which he promised not to criticize the film again so that Kubrick would allow him to adapt the original script.
After the interview that Duvall did in 2016, there were many spectators who were amazed at his physical condition, his image, his broken teeth and the incongruity of some of his answers and criticized him for showing it in such a ruthless way just for making a show . But Duvall had a reason to make that public appearance: he needed money to continue paying for his treatment.
Now, she lives away from the mundane noise in a country house in Texas and is rarely seen appearing in public.