Fascinating insights to director Wes Anderson’s career are available if you buy Matt Zoller Seitz’s new book The Wes Anderson Collection, but the author was kind enough to give away a few excerpts for free via Vulture this afternoon. In his “24 Things I Learned Writing My Book About Wes Anderson,” he reveals that Anderson first heard about the concept of video piracy from his childhood doctor, his first project Bottle Rocket was rejected by each film festival to which it was entered and, perhaps most surprisingly, Bill Murray got only $9,000 for his role of dreary Herman Blume.
And not only was Murray paid $9,000, but he also offered $25,000 out-of-pocket to pay for the film’s production when Disney told Anderson that the company refused to fund the helicopter necessary to film the movie’s closing montage. According to Anderson, the check was never cashed.
The $9,000 sure went a long way: Murray’s performance in Rushmore earned him plenty more roles in other independent films, many of which were with Anderson as director. His role in Sofia Coppola’s 2003’s Lost in Translation even led to an Oscar nomination for best actor.