If you haven’t watched Practical Magic yet, there is no time like the present, and you can thank us later. But if you have, then it’s time to dust off the old broomstick and travel back to Whidbey Island circa 1998. Let’s get started!
If you’re like us, the first time you watched Practical Magic you probably saw aunt Fran and thought, “she looks super familiar”. And after racking your brain, you realize it’s none other than Rizzo from Grease. The kicker is that Stockard Channing wasn’t the first choice for Aunt Fran, in fact, Vanessa Redgrave was, but executives and Redgrave couldn’t come to an agreement regarding contracts, and frankly, we aren’t sad about it.
We, along with many others, consider Practical Magic a cult classic, but initially, it didn’t do so great at the box office or with critics, for that matter. The film lost money and critics claimed the movie was too dark for kids but too childish for adults, and that the script lacked wit, but needless to say, the film bounced back.
Originally the film crew hired a bunch of locals to appear in the movie, but after learning they were only going to make roughly $40 per day, most of them opted to quit.
You can’t think Practical Magic without thinking of the gorgeous Victorian home that Nicole Kidman and Sandra Bullock’s characters grow up in. It was so gorgeous that (queen) Barbara Streisand wanted to buy it. Unfortunately for her, the house isn’t real. The outside of the house was known as an “architectural shell”, and the inside of the house was just a bunch of sets in Los Angeles. After filming was done, the shell was torn down.
Nicole Kidman took the exorcism scene very seriously. Director Griffin Dunne said Kidman insisted on banging her head on the floor, so much so that rubber panels had to be installed to protect her cranium.
We don’t know about you, but we would love to have a pitcher of those margaritas everyone was enjoying. The fun seemed really real, didn’t it? That’s because it was. Everyone was drunk while filming this scene including the director. And even after the scene was wrapped, the cast and crew kept drinking, dancing, and laughing.
Last, but certainly not least, the film was cursed by a real witch. To ensure that the film came across as authentic the production team hired a woman who claimed to be a witch. Things got a little weird when she demanded a large amount of money in addition to what she was already being paid. Upon being told no, the woman claimed to curse the set, the actors, the crew, you name it. And while everyone was pretty sure it was a hoax, Griffin had a priest perform an exorcism just to play it safe.