Swept Away: A Quiz Deck of Romantic Movies
A modern variation on the Pygmalion theme, the hit romance Pretty Woman (1990) made Julia Roberts a superstar for her performance as Vivian Ward, a crass-into-class call girl. What kind of car did Richard Gere drive, badly, in the film?
(a) Ferrari Mondial
(b) Lamborghini Countach
(c) Lotus Esprit
(d) Porsche Carrera
Answer Gere’s character, business mogul Edward Lewis, is accustomed to being chauffeured about in a limo, but one night at a party he borrows the Lotus Esprit of his associate Philip Stuckey (Jason Alexander) to get back to his hotel. He’s shown grinding the gears of the sleek sports car as it lurches through the streets of Hollywood and Beverly Hills. The film’s original script, by J. F. Lawton, was titled “Three Thousand” (the amount of money Edward offers Vivian to be his escort for the week) and took a grittier, darker look at Vivian’s life as a prostitute. But director Garry Marshall opted instead for a more commercially accessible fairy-tale romance. Several experienced actresses were considered for the role of Vivian but turned it down; Daryl Hannah called the role “degrading for the whole of womankind.” Finally Marshall cast a relative newcomer, the 21-year-old Roberts, whose performance earned her an Oscar nomination for Best Actress.