One Cameo In A Million Ways To Die In The West Was Even A Surprise To Seth MacFarlane

Thanks to the appearances of Sam Jones, Ryan Reynolds and Ted Danson in Ted, not to mention the hundreds of celebrity voices who have done guest spots on Family Guy, American Dad and The Cleveland Show, we fully expected that Seth MacFarlane’s A Million Ways To Die In The West would feature some interesting cameos, and we were not disappointed. Some of the best moments in the movie came as a result of a bizarre special appearance that made for a good laugh. What may surprise you, however, is that one of the funniest in the film was neither in the script nor Seth MacFarlane’s idea.

WARNING: The rest of this article contains minor spoilers for A Million Ways To Die In The West. If you haven’t seen the film, read on at your own risk!

At a recent press conference held in Los Angeles for A Million Ways To Die In The West, Charlize Theron revealed that she was the one responsible for the random appearance of Ewan McGregor in the comedy. As the story goes, the Scottish star was in the neighborhood during the production of MacFarlane’s movie, starring in Gavin O’Connor’s Jane Got A Gun. He stopped by the Million Ways To Die In The West set just to make an appearance, and it was then that Theron decided to offer him a part.

"He just came to say hello and I was like, ‘Do you want to be in our movie?’" Theron said. "He was doing a Western, so he had the face. He was already in hair and makeup for his movie, so we just threw him in."

MacFarlane was somewhat blindsided by the news ("Shit, you already offered him...? Alright, so..."), but found that McGregor and his grown facial hair fit right in with the townspeople of Old Stump. He fits in so well, in fact, that the director says he doesn’t expect many people will actually catch it. Said MacFarlane, "The gag is so quick, I don’t think a lot of people know it’s him, but that’s good."

Of course, Ewan McGregor wasn’t the only cameo in the film, and one of the other great ones was the quick appearance by Ryan Reynolds. The actor previously had a funny, silent small role in Ted, and when MacFarlane ran into a scene that required a bit of levity, he found the perfect way to bring Reynolds back. Explained the director,

"We needed Liam’s character to kill a guy in the saloon to scare everybody and we thought, well this Ryan Reynolds thing in Ted went over so well. Let’s just get a laugh here where it would normally play as a straight moment."

A Million Ways To Die In The West is in theaters now.

Eric Eisenberg
Assistant Managing Editor

NJ native who calls LA home and lives in a Dreamatorium. A decade-plus CinemaBlend veteran who is endlessly enthusiastic about the career he’s dreamt of since seventh grade.