The opening of “Scary Movie 2” memorably features Natasha Lyonne in a parody of “The Exorcist.” The comedian appears as a demon-possessed woman who gets a visit from two priests, played by James Wood and Andy Richter. Lyonne reminded fans in a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly that Marlon Brando was originally cast in Wood’s cameo and shot some scenes before dropping out of “Scary Movie 2” due to health reasons. Brando’s scene was never released.
“I have a VHS copy of the dailies that I got because Marlon Brando’s final role — sadly for him, but luckily for me — is doing this ‘Exorcist’ opening teaser,” Lyonne said. “I don’t know what he was thinking, really. I mean, why would he do that?”
Recalling Brando’s short time on set, Lyonne said he was “very chatty” and had an earpiece in order to assist in his line readings. Brando also “had an oxygen tank and he just kind of held my boob, because that was in the script. He was supposed to be like, ‘The power of Christ compels you …’ I just remember being like, ‘Ah, this is the surrealism that André Breton, Salvador Dali were talking about.'”
The scene required Brando to stand over Lyonne, who was laying down in a bed and donning “Exorcist” makeup. The actor said, “So, I had Brando with the earpiece and the hand on the boob, and the makeup, and ‘The power of Christ compels you,’ and not to curse, but, ‘Your mother sucks cocks in hell,’ and so on. This was all happening at once, and I remember like, ‘You know, showbiz is alright.’ In that moment, showbiz was A-okay.”
Woods signed on to replace Brando, which Lyonne said was “a little weird.” Richter stayed in his role as the second priest. Lyonne said, “Andy Richter and I still do bits about it. So, all told, a fine experience.”
Lyonne currently stars in and executive producers the Netflix comedy series “Russian Doll,” which just returned for a second season.