Robin Williams: Jumanji child star Bradley Pierce opened up about how the actor defended him and Kirsten Dunst on set

Eight years ago, the death of Robin Williams shook the entertainment world to its core.

The star of the films including Mrs Doubtfire, goodwill hunt and night at the museum was 6 when he died on August 11, 2014.

One of his most popular films was jumanjithe 1995 blockbuster starring Bonnie Hunt and Jonathan Hyde.

It also starred Kirsten Dunst and Bradley Pierce, who were child stars at the time – and in 2020 Pierce revealed how Williams once stepped in to defend him from overwhelmed producers.

Pierce, who is now 39, reflected on his experience with the film in celebration of its 25th anniversary in 2020.

Jumanji followed two children whose worlds collide with Williams’ Alan Parrish, who was drawn into the magical board game as a young boy.

Speak with CBCListenPierce recalled shooting the sequence where the game unleashes a monsoon on the world.

Pierce, who was 13 at the time, had particular problems with the water getting in between his extensive makeup. In the movie, the game turns its character into a monkey.

“I couldn’t breathe through my nose,” he said, adding that the shoot – which lasted eight days – “was really exhausting for everyone” and left him and Dunst “tired”.

Still, he says the producers tried to get her to work over time, which isn’t a legal requirement for children.

“Kids can only be on set for a few hours,” Pierce said. “The producers had reached out to our parents and said, ‘Is there any way we could work a little overtime to get it done?’ This is not at all unusual in the industry because it literally saves $100,000 (£73,000), plus half an hour more than a full day.”

He says Williams “got wind of these talks” and “pulled the director off [Joe Johnston] and producers aside” to tell them that wasn’t going to happen.

Bonnie Hunt, Bradley Pierce, Kirsten Dunst and Robin Williams in “Jumanji”

(Rex functions)

“He said, ‘No, we’re not doing overtime. You’re letting everyone out now and we’ll be back next week.’”

Pierce added, “For all the dollars it would have cost, no one would have stood up like he did. Not only was he warm, generous and kind, but he was also very protective.”

Here’s where the word “Jumanji” came from and what it actually means. Robin Williams: Jumanji child star Bradley Pierce opened up about how the actor defended him and Kirsten Dunst on set


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