John Candy Steve Martin Skeletons

A Planes, Trains and Automobiles Extra Made $131k for One Line, Only for It to be Cut

That's a lot of cheese.

At the end of 2022, the classic film Planes, Trains and Automobiles celebrated its 35th anniversary, and the title still manages to hold up as one of the best movies of all time. To commemorate that, a piece was written by Vanity Fair detailing the entire history and backstory of the movie, which talked all about actors John Candy and Steven Martin.

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Interestingly enough, background info on the stars of the film wasn’t even the most fascinating thing to come out of this piece. Instead, that title belongs to a story about an extra named Troy Evans, who was hired on to be a truck driver in the film.

“I left home not having $300 in rent. And when I went back home, having done my one line in the movie, we bought our first house.”

The scene in question refers to a moment near the end of the movie where Steve Martin and John Candy’s characters are stuck in a snowstorm and are able to get a lift from a truck driver. The caveat is that they have to sit in the back of the refrigerated trailer because the driver doesn’t like people in his cab.

The funny part is that when the movie came out, Evan’s line wasn’t even in the film, as you just see a door being slammed shut by his character without any lines of dialogue being exchanged. What is even crazier is that the extra spent 50 days on standby before shooting this scene, only for it to be cut.

According to the article, Evans was hired on to shoot one line as a truck driver in LA, and would be paid $1,000 for going in and saying one line. Eventually, it was decided that the scene would be shot in New York so that they could get the authenticity of an actual snowstorm.

Instead of getting another actor, Evans was flown out to NY. Once he arrived, there was no snow. Eventually, after the blizzard never reached the city, the company moved from Buffalo to Ohio to St. Louis to Illinois, taking him along for the ride to each new location.

The craziest part is that they paid him the $1,000 fee to keep him on standby until they finally found somewhere that had snow, only to cut his sequence out of the movie entirely. So, in total, he made $50,000 for pretty much no work. Today, that number equates to around $131,000.

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Andrew McMahon
Andrew was Twinfinite's Features Editor from 2020 through until March 2023 and wrote for the site from 2018. He has wandered around with a Bachelor's Degree in Communications sitting in his back pocket for a while now, all the while wondering what he is going to do for a career. Luckily, video games have always been there, especially as his writing career progresses.