WANTED: Pepe Le Pew footage from Space Jam 2. REWARD: $100,000.
Pop culture’s most problematic horny French skunk was originally going to be in Space Jam: A New Legacy, but when Malcolm D. Lee took over as director from Terence Nance, Pepe was “eliminated [and] never animated for the live-action footage which was shot,” according to Deadline. The scene — like the entire movie — sounds wild:
Pepe was set to appear in a black-and-white Casablanca-like Rick’s Cafe sequence. Pepe, playing a bartender, starts hitting on a woman at the bar… He begins kissing her arm, which she pulls back, then slamming Pepe into the chair next to hers. She then pours her drink on Pepe, and slaps him hard, sending him spinning in a stool, which is then stopped by LeBron James’ hand. James and Bugs Bunny are looking for Lola, and Pepe knows her whereabouts. Pepe then tells the guys that Penelope cat has filed a restraining order against him. James makes a remark in the script that Pepe can’t grab other Tunes without their consent.
Greice Santo played the woman the cartoon skunk is hitting on, and because her scene was cut, a representative for the actress said that she’s “offering a $100,000 ‘reward’ to anyone who provides the footage of their animated/live-action exchange.” Santo told the Los Angeles Times that it’s “so important to have this scene in a movie to inspire the younger generations, and also the older generations, so we can correct that behavior. I felt that this scene was a way to show kids that this kind of behavior is wrong.”
Now before you contact James Woods and tell him you’re willing to split the $100,000 reward 50/50, you should know that selling the footage is super illegal. “It is a crime for someone to solicit another to steal and distribute Warner Bros.’ property,” the studio told the Times, which added, “After publication of [the original] story, Santo’s representative contacted the Times to state the offer is to pay Warner Bros. for the footage.”
I think I speak for everyone (no one?) when I say: #ReleaseThePepeCut.
(Via the Los Angeles Times)