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In the crime drama, Sandler plays Howard Ratner, a New York City Diamond District jeweler who has an addiction to gambling. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, he and the film’s directors Josh and Benny Safdie revealed that two actors who played bodyguards and repeatedly beat up Sandler’s character were once too rough when “manhandling” the A-lister as cameras were rolling.
“Sandler’s so in it, he’s so into the character that it started to actually get a little scary one or two times, because he’s getting choked at one point in the scene and there were all these cues,” Josh Safdie told the outlet.
Adam Sandler and Jackie Sandler arrive at AARP The Magazine’s 19th Annual Movies For Grownups Awards at the Beverly Wilshire, A Four Seasons Hotel on January 11 in Beverly Hills, Calif.
The co-director continued: “There was one take when Sandler was getting choked and he was trying to tap out, but the actor thought he was just being Howard so he choked harder, and Adam couldn’t breathe.”
The Safdies said it was Keith Williams Richards and Tommy Kominik who played the roles of character Arno’s (Eric Bogosian) bodyguards. They explained the men had never filmed a movie before but were “very professional.”
Sandler confirmed he journeyed home from set with several bruises considering his character was often roughhoused by Arno’s crew in the film. Despite that, he had nothing but positive things to say about working with the “Uncut Gems” directors.
“I love these guys, I love ’em. I mean, they’re incredible filmmakers,” Sandler said. “I love having these new friends, we talk all the time, and I think they’re just great, great people.”
Adam Sandler accepts the best actor award for “Uncut Gems” at the National Board of Review Awards gala at Cipriani 42nd Street on Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2020, in New York.
The actor added that he would “die to work with them again.”
“Uncut Gems” was a deviation from the comedic flicks Sandler is used to starring in. He received heaping praise for the role and critics argued he was snubbed when he did not receive an Oscars nod for his portrayal.
Last December, Sandler’s co-star Julia Fox, who played his girlfriend in the movie, spoke to Entertainment Tonight about working with the actor and revealed the one change he made to the movie before filming was underway.
“My character’s name was originally supposed to be Sadie,” Fox said. “But that’s his daughter’s name, so he actually had it switched for that to make it easier on the girls.”
Sandler and his wife, Jackie Sandler, have two daughters–Sadie, 14 and Sunny, 11. The actor previously credited his wife for encouraging him to accept the role.