Oh, what could have been.
Shane West is spilling secrets from A Walk to Remember, and according to the teen heartthrob, he and Mandy Moore had crushes on each other while filming the movie.
"Yeah, there was chemistry. I think we both had a little bit of a crush," West recalled to Vulture, adding that nothing romantic happened. "But then we were just there for each other in the most honest and purest of ways. That sounds incredibly corny but is true and rare."
It's hard to imagine anyone other than Moore playing Jamie Sullivan, the reverend's daughter battling a terminal-leukemia diagnosis, but West admitted he thinks Jessica Simpson was in talks for the role first.
"I remember thinking that would be very difficult to make happen. I remember thinking Mandy, even though I didn’t know her, was perfect for this," he added.
West said his connection with Moore was immediate.
"We had a sit-down audition. It was one of the nicest auditions ever, where Mandy and I got to read together, with the director, at Warner Bros. for an hour or two, almost like we had the part. You don't really do that. But I think he had always said that [Mandy] was his favorite and I was his favorite, so he wanted to put us together, work with us, and see if we could have chemistry," he continued. "Apparently, we did."
That chemistry was on full display during the movie's infamous butterfly tattoo scene. But according to West, getting the temporary tattoo on the actress's shoulder was harder than it looked.
"It was fun to do. It's hard to not smile when you're looking at Mandy's cute, adorable face — to react to that. And it made it easy. I couldn't get that tattoo right. I was screwing it up constantly," he shared. "There should be outtakes. I don’t think there are — where I peel it off and it’s like a third of a butterfly, or half a butterfly, or it didn’t work at all. Then she starts laughing and then it's all worthless. So I think the combination of us joking around made the ultimate reveal more of a success."
Another fun fact West shared is that he bought the orange and white car from the movie, which he still has.
"I technically ruined the car, so I'm already worried about selling it because it's not the same color that everyone loved. I painted it black with a red stripe," he said, explaining he's thinking of selling it. "I'm sure I destroyed the value. But whatever. It's a fun thing."
As for where he thinks his character, Landon Carter, is today, West says there are likely two possibilities.
"I think he continued doing what he was going to do. She was his inspiration. I think he lived his life to the fullest. It's hard to say if he would remarry, because you could really go two different ways with that," he explained. "You can say that this is the love of his life, and having her near him in his heart keeps him going with his life and his career. But you could also say the same thing would set him up for happiness with someone else, just with all respect to the past. I can't imagine anyone reading the book would want to hear that. So I would say maybe he would stay single and happy, hopefully not miserable because he is staying single."
If you're holding out hope for a sequel, West matter-of-factly shot that down: "My favorite is when I'll hear about sequel possibilities, and, well, what is the sequel? She dies. I don't know if she comes back. We could turn this into a genre piece, and she comes back from the dead, and it’s a zombie movie."
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