8 Showbiz Myths That Are Easily Debunked

  • February 18, 2014
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4.

There’s No Ghost in Three Men and a Baby

One of the most famous Hollywood urban legends is that at one point during the movie Three Men and a Baby, you can clearly see what appears to be a small boy standing behind some curtains in the apartment of the three men. Visual evidence exists that there is, in fact, something or someone there. No one remembers any little boy being on set, so naturally everyone assumed it was a ghost. Because people are idiots like that. What it actually was, was a cardboard cutout of Ted Danson, whose character was a vain actor and had a cardboard cutout of himself in the apartment. What’s hidden behind the curtains in a tux and top hat and made of cardboard.

3.

No Stuntmen Died While Filming Ben Hur

The chariot race in the legendary film Ben Hur is one of the most famous scenes ever filmed, and over the years it not only gained but sustained acclaim for being brutal, visceral, and incredibly realistic looking. It was so realistic looking, in fact, that rumors swirled about a stuntman being trampled by horses and killed, and that his death was kept in the final cut of the film. First of all, that would be a public relations disaster if word ever got out, so obviously we know it’s not true. Charlton Heston himself stated in his autobiography that no one was hurt during the filming of the scene, and there has never been even a shred of evidence or documentation to contradict him. In fact, the only known injury was a small gash that required four stitches for Heston’s own stand in, though that’s not nearly as much fun for conspiracy theorists to gossip about.

2.

The “Paul is Dead” Rumors are just Rumors

One of the most off the wall show business myths of all time is that, supposedly, Paul McCartney was killed in a car accident in 1966 and the Beatles found a lookalike so they could carry on making music, all the while scattering clues throughout their songs and album covers letting people know the truth. Heck, there’s even a supposed name of the stand in: William Campbell, or William Sheppard, interchangeably. This is where the whole “play the song backwards and they reveal the truth!” rumor sprang up. Of course it’s obviously absurd, first of all because Paul is still very much alive, along with the fact that no such car crash ever took place. McCartney even took to Life Magazine to assure his fans that he was, in fact, very much alive.

1.

No Munchkin Hanged Himself in Wizard of Oz

Perhaps the most famous urban legend that’s been floated around Hollywood over the years is that, in one particular scene in The Wizard of Oz, you can see a disgruntled and depressed munchkin (actually the actor playing him – munchkins seem far too upbeat to get disgruntled or depressed) swinging from a tree after having hanged himself. For years, people have insisted that there was indeed a suicide on the set, despite how utterly ridiculous that is. The fact of the matter is that it wasn’t an actor at all, but an exotic bird. See, it turns out that in order to make the whole place feel more “outdoorsy” some large birds were on loan from the LA Zoo and allowed to roam around the set, including the one that some people have inexplicably decided must have been an actor committing suicide.

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