Lucy and Bill clashed on set (Picture: Darren Michaels/Columbia/Kobal)
Lucy Liu does not regret her confrontation with Bill Murray on the set of Charlie’s Angels, saying the language the actor used was ‘inexcusable’.
The pair starred opposite each other on the 2000 hit Charlie’s Angels, with Lucy playing Alex Munday and Bill playing Bosley alongside a cast including Cameron Diaz and Drew Barrymore.
However, Bill did not return for the sequel Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle, with Bernie Mac stepping in as Bosley’s adopted brother, and his exit was believed to have stemmed from arguments with the director McG and a spat with Lucy.
At the time, it was claimed the Groundhog Day star told Lucy that she couldn’t act, sparking a physical altercation between the two on set.
Lucy appeared on the Los Angeles Times podcast Asian Enough, hosted by Johana Bhuiyan, Tracy Brown, Suhauna Hussain and Jen Yamato, and explained that the clash took place during the rehearsal for a scene which had been reworked, without Bill’s knowledge.
The 52-year-old explained: ‘We had taken the weekend to rework that particular scene and Bill Murray was not able to come because he had to attend some family gathering. So it was everyone else, and we just made the scene more fluid.
‘I wish I had more to do with [the rewrite], but I didn’t. Because I was the last one cast, and I probably had the least amount of privilege, in terms of creatively participating at that time.’
Lucy, Cameron and Drew starred alongside Bill in the 2000 film (Picture: Columbia)
While Lucy claims not to have been involved in the rewrite, her co-star began to ‘sort of hurl insults’ at her.
She said: ‘I was, like, “Wow, he seems like he’s looking straight at me.” I couldn’t believe that [his comments] could be towards me, because what do I have to do with anything majorly important at that time?
‘I say, “I’m so sorry. Are you talking to me?”—and clearly he was, because then it started to become a one-on-one communication.’
Lucy said that some of the language Bill, now 70, used was ‘was inexcusable and unacceptable’, adding: ‘I stood up for myself, and I don’t regret it. Because no matter how low on the totem pole you may be or wherever you came from, there’s no need to condescend or to put other people down.’
After the clash, some press reports claimed that Lucy had turned the row physical after Bill said she couldn’t act.
The Ally McBeal star said: ‘What came out in the press was that I was this and I was that. It was incredible to me how it was turned around, and they automatically thought that the woman was the difficult one. But I didn’t understand how it got flipped when I had nothing to do with instigating it, or creating that platform of confrontation or anxiety.’
However, she doesn’t regret any of it, saying: ‘I remember years later, maybe even decades later, some crew members that I didn’t even know at the time came up to me on other sets and told me that they were there at the time, and they were really grateful that I did that.’
Lucy added that there is no bad blood with Bill, saying: ‘I have nothing against Bill Murray at all. I’ve seen him since then at an SNL reunion, and he came up to me and was perfectly nice.
‘But I’m not going to sit there and be attacked.’
Ghostbusters star Bill addressed the claims back in 2009 in an interview with the Times, saying: ‘Look, I will dismiss you completely if you are unprofessional and working with me…When our relationship is professional, and you’re not getting that done, forget it.’
While Bill didn’t return for the sequel, Lucy returned with her fellow Angels Cameron and Drew for Full Throttle in 2003, and in 2019, the franchise was rebooted, with Kristen Stewart, Naomi Scott and Ella Balinska taking over as the new Angels.
Lucy went on to star in films including Kill Bill: Volume 1, the Kung Fu Panda franchise and Lucky Number Slevin, and starred as Joan Watson in the hit series Elementary.Credit: Original article published here.