Being uncomfortable on the job is far from desirable, but at Tony Todd’s expense, it came for a pretty penny.
"Candyman" 30th Anniversary
Thirty years after the release of the 1992 horror film “Candyman,” the star recalled how one of its most popular — and challenging — scenes paid off.
Did you know? Remember the eerie scene where bees come out of Todd’s mouth as he leans in to kiss his co-star Virginia Madsen? Well, a whopping 200,000 bees were used for the moment, according to Entertainment Tonight.
“The bees were the worst nemesis,” he told the outlet.
A Bigger Pay Day
To compensate for Todd’s dedication to acting out the scene, his earnings for the film included a clause in his contract that ensured $1,000 for each bee sting.
So, how many times was he stung? In total, he was stung 27 times — adding an additional $27,000 to his check.
"I had a great lawyer at the time and we got paid," Todd told the outlet. “So, I didn't mind it, I'm going like, 'Bring it on!'”
“You know, actors are trained to be fearless, so it was a fearless moment and it stood the test of time,” he added about playing “Candyman.”
As for Madsen, the scene was more dangerous as she is deathly allergic to bees. During the interview, she noted that on the set, the bees had their own trailer, as well as a big net cage and an ambulance nearby.
“That’s why they had the paramedics on the set, which didn’t make me feel very confident. But the bees that were on me were baby bees so they can sting but they said they are less likely to,” Madsen said.
The courage of the co-stars opened the door for the 2021 sequel, which starred Yahya Abdul-Mateen II.