Paul Newman, the renowned actor, made an unconventional attempt to deter the audience from watching The Silver Chalice, an ill-fated movie. He did that to manage the expectations for the premiere of the movie.

The late Twilight actor left an impressive Hollywood legacy. He gave some of the best performances in The Hustler, The Sting, and Cool Hand Luke. It is due to it all that even after 15 years of his death, he maintains the title of being one of the biggest movie stars. 

Paul Newman Tried to Stop People from Watching the Silver Chalice

Paul Newman
Paul Newman

Newman was cast as the lead actor in The Silver Chalice. The decision was rooted in the hopes of building on his emerging reputation as a talented actor. However, with production unfolding, it became apparent that the movie was destined to not offer the expected outcome. He hated the movie enough to take out the ads, begging the people not to watch it, when the same got aired on the TV.

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He said, “If you’re thinking of seeing ‘The Silver Chalice,’ don’t. It’s a piece of crap.” Later on, Newman even called the movie “The worst motion picture produced during the 1950s”. Even though he didn’t like the movie and his big screen debut in 1954, the performance he gave in it didn’t cause his career to suffer. 

The Silver Chalice Was an Epic Movie

Paul Newman in Twilight
Paul Newman in Twilight

The Silver Chalice, it’s one of the biblical epics. In the movie, Newman plays the role of a Greek artist, Basil, who gets asked to build The Silver Chalice for holy grail. Now, Newman played his part, and the movie grossed around $2 million at the box office, which wasn’t satisfactory for the big budget. Newman wasn’t satisfied with his role, so he paid $1200 for taking out the ads in 2 of the local newspapers, wherein he urged the people for not tuning in.

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As per the biography named Paul Newman: A Life by Shawn Levy, the advertisement by Newman read, “Paul Newman apologizes every night this week- Channel 9.” However, the ads increased people’s interest and the movie got ratings higher than unexpected.

Paul Newman’s The Silver Chalice Did Well

Paul Newman
Paul Newman

Newman was mortified but won the award for the performance he gave in The Silver Chalice. At Golden Globes that year, he even got named the Most Promising Male Newcomer, and the movie got nominated for score and cinematography at the Academy Awards. Indeed, Newman’s celebrated many times later too. He got 10 Oscar nominations over the course of his career and even the Best Actor award in 1987 for The Color of Money.

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No matter the nominations and how Newman’s celebrated, the ads serve as a testament to his integrity as an artist, for the cinematic misstep. Further, The Silver Chalice newspaper ads serve as a fascinating footnote in the history of Hollywood, trying to showcase the bold attempt of the actor to shape the narrative surrounding his work.

Source: The Independent

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