Duncan Jones new science fiction movie Mute has a lot of people talking, but one of the things they're talking about most is Paul Rudd's epic mustache. It's so epic it's changed the way people react to the actor. Apparently, while wearing the massive 'stache Rudd found himself in an elevator with an elderly couple who seemed genuinely frightened of him. Although, as it turns out, it wasn't just the mustache that was the problem. According to Rudd...
It's great. People don't like it. People really recoil when they see a pronounced mustache... I remember one time having a mustache and going into an elevator. I was sweaty and I was running for this elevator, and there was an elderly couple who were really not psyched to see me. They thought I looked threatening or something. They walked off the elevator and I realized, and I'm not kidding, I had a t-shirt that said 'Mustache rides, 25 cents.' I didn't even realize it until they walked off. That is a true story. And, they never offered me a quarter.
To be fair, it's possible that t-shirt would have terrified an elderly couple even if Paul Rudd hadn't actually had a mustache at the time. Of course, with that mustache, how could somebody not be mildly terrified. It takes up most of the actor's face. Also, how often do you have to wear a "mustache rides" t-shirt to make it such a normal thing that you forget you're wearing it?
Having said that, we just get used to seeing some people without facial hair, and sometimes when that changes it just feels wrong. It seems like people who don't even know Paul Rudd know there's something wrong when he has a mustache. And rest assured the mustache is entirely real. Paul Rudd confirms on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon that his facial hair is entirely his own and not the creation of Mute's makeup department. He also reveals the rather surprising inspiration for the mustache, Robert Altman's M.A.S.H.
Yeah, that's real. And it actually goes and then splits out. You know Justin [Theroux] has a blonde wig. There's a similar thing with Elliot Gould and Donald Sutherland in M.A.S.H., so we kind of recreated their looks a little bit.
With that piece of information, it now makes sense why Paul Rudd's character has a mustache like that in the first place Beyond the fact that when your character's name is Cactus Bill, it would seem to be necessary that you have a massive mustache.