This summer’s R.I.P.D. cost $130 million, but made $68 million worldwide and was roundly jeered as one of summer’s biggest, most deserving flops. In August 2011, co-star Jeff Bridges was bullish on the film, then still in production. “It’s going to be fun and strange,” he told The Los Angeles Times. “This movie is really out there. We’re a couple of dead cops looking for dead people who are pretending to be alive.”
In the wake of film’s failure, Bridges has tempered his enthusiasm a bit. “I had such a great time working on that movie,” he tells GQ in a new interview. “I remember what we were doing. I thought: This could be fun to see. And when I saw it, I was a little underwhelmed. For my mind, the studio made some, uh, choices that I wouldn’t have made.” Did the film’s commercial failure bother him? “It’s like having a horse in the race,” he said. “In this case, the jockey fell off the horse and you came in last. Ha ha ha. You know. That happens sometimes.”
Bridges doesn’t habitually dis his past flops, though in 2010, enough time had passed that he felt free to mock his 1976 King Kong remake, when asked on the Tron: Legacy set what special-effects-heavy films he liked: “I thought this last one was great, but ours, oh God, what a joke. You had Rick Baker in that suit juxtaposed to this giant 80-foot ceramic thing.” At any rate, he got something out of R.I.P.D.: an avid musician who’s close with ex-Doobie Brother Michael McDonald, Bridges was “really excited about working with Kevin Bacon,” since “he and his brother go out on the road and do concerts” (as the Bacon Brothers).
No matter how he feels about the final product, Bridges probably regrets R.I.P.D. less than a stray remark he made at a special screening of the film for first responders to the Boston Marathon earlier this year. Boston was also the site of Bridges’ 1994 Blown Away, in which he has to track down mad bomber Tommy Lee Jones. “Being an entertainer, it’s easy to click into improvisation mode,” he told the Daily Mail. “So out of my mouth came, ‘It’s so wonderful to be here. Thank you for your heroism.’ Then I said, ‘I apologise for bombing your city.’ What the…? I just felt terrible. I lashed myself.”