[This post includes details on how Colossal ends. Consider this your warning.]
By now you may know that in Nacho Vigalondo’s Colossal, Anne Hathaway‘s heroine Gloria doesn’t ultimately have to defeat the monster she can control that materializes in Seoul. Instead, she has to vanquish her childhood classmate-turned-drinking buddy Oscar (Jason Sudeikis), who both has a similar power and is a total jackass convinced that she should bend to his whims.
At the end of the movie, Gloria travels to Seoul so she can get the upper-hand on Oscar. But in an interview with ScreenRant, Vigalondo explained that Hathaway made a key contribution to the ending so Oscar’s death felt even more justified. Vigalondo said that at first, Gloria “threw him away in a more dry way.” But Hathaway didn’t want her character to come off as merciless killer. ”Two days before shooting the scene, Anne Hathaway called me, on a Sunday,” he recalled. “She was all of a sudden worried about the scene. She was like, ‘Okay. Can we make the movie in a way that she doesn’t kill him?’ Because it’s capital punishment.”
The director maintained that Oscar had to meet his end for the film to work, but Hathaway’s concerns prompted him to rework the scene so Sudeikis’ character speaks while he’s being held aloft by Hathaway’s monster and calls her a “bitch.” The viciousness of that word cements him as the embodiment of male entitlement. The moral of the story? Listen to Anne Hathaway, and don’t shy away from portraying your asshole male lead as the absolute worst. “Anne Hathaway was totally right when she said, ‘If I execute this guy, in this cold way, we’re going to lose the empathy towards the character. Because she’s not like that,’” Vigalondo added.