Mark Wahlberg just may be the realest actor alive. Unsatisfied with a vaguely written scene in “Broken City,” Mark went on an improvisational tirade that involved a drunken fight, a run-in with the NYPD and an apologetic call to the Mayor of New York City.
“Broken City,” which opens on Friday (January 18) is a gritty crime drama starring Russell Crowe and Wahlberg, who plays Billy Taggart, a less-than-perfect cop caught up in a murderous political scandal. In the film, the flawed hero has quite a few fall-from-grace moments, one of them coming after a nasty fight with his girlfriend (played by Natalie Martinez). After the fight scene, the movie’s script simply read: “Billy Taggart walks down the street.” But after a last minute change by Wahlberg and director Allen Hughes, what they were left with was a real-life rampage that had the potential to go all wrong.
“We had like two hours and Mark went nuts and tore down the whole East Village,” Hughes told MTV News.
The Academy Award-nominated actor marched into a corner store bodega, bought two 40-ounce bottles of malt liquor and got hammered before he tossed the bottle at an SUV (causing approximately $10,000 worth of damage) and tearing the security gates off an NYC storefront. “He tore the whole thing off and he threw it, those things are meant to prevent that,” Hughes recalled, still in awe.
Wahlberg didn’t stop there, he also went a started a street fight. “They really were chucking too, out of nowhere,” Hughes said of the brawl. “Mark caught a few.
“All of it was very real; none of it was staged… He was out, he was doing his Tupac, he was King Kong’in it,” the director assured us before marveling at the fact that pedestrians never really caught on to what was happening. “I was surprised that people weren’t tweeting.”
Things got out of hand when the actor tried to get all “Grand Theft Auto” on the set and the NYPD had to step in. “Eventually he tried to get in a few cars that were coming by and he opened the door to get in the car and that’s when the cops were like, ’You know what, we’re pulling your permit. We’re shutting you down. This King Kong sh– is over. It’s a wrap’,” he said.
The only way Hughes and the crew could get their permit to shoot back was if the veteran actor paid a personal visit to the Mayor’s office, but a resourceful Wahlberg was able to make everything right with just a single phone call. “The Mayor pulled our permits and they wanted him to come to the Mayor’s Office,” Hughes explained. “He’s pretty smooth — he called the Mayor, it got smoothed out and we continued shooting.”
Check out everything we’ve got on “Broken City,” out Friday.