Willem Dafoe: Before he became famous, he was offered the role of a stripper

During his career, he played Vincent van Gogh, lighthouse keeper Thomas Wake and the Green Goblin in the Spider-Man films. However, before Willem Dafoe started getting the roles that brought him fame and money, he had to accept lesser-known offers. As an aspiring actor, he performed in little-known theater companies, one of which – The Wooster Group in New York – came up with the idea of ​​an unusual performance. Its actors used Hawaiian music from the 1950s and performed a dance they invented.

“We bought grass skirts, someone painted the background for the scenery, we invented dances and performed them on stage. The joke was that we were completely naked under these grass costumes. Although it was an intimate show, it was a huge success and was very popular.” “Very popular with the public,” the star admitted on the “SmartLess” podcast.

The publicity gained by the “Hawaiian Show” has led to several appearances. The Wooster Group has also been invited to private events. Because it was a good opportunity for the then poor actors to earn extra money, they willingly accepted such offers and presented their dancing skills off stage. Unfortunately, the nature of the performance meant that the actors of The Wooster Group were not treated as actors by everyone.

“We were invited to a special event, and we were offered almost $1,000 for the performance, and we were really poor actors at the time, so we liked it and gladly took the job. We went to this party, changed” in the bathroom, and then we did the show. In the end, people would come up to us and ask us to meet in private, thinking we were some kind of striptease or God knows what,” Dafoe recalls in the podcast.


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