There are four things that are certain in life: taxes, death, Cate Blanchett being the best part in whatever film she’s in, and a never-ending appreciation of the late Stanley Kubrick’s work.
Now the iconic director’s final film, Eyes Wide Shut, wasn’t his best work but it does contain one of his most iconic scenes: the ritual orgy scene. The scene is excessively eerie due to details like the setting, the creepy Illuminati outfits and the masks. But the most memorable part is the mysterious masked woman, who really sold the whole sequence when she started chanting spine-chilling stuff.
So what does Eyes Wide Shut have to do with Cate Blanchett? Well, it turns out that Cate is the voice behind the chanting masked woman.
In an oral history of Eyes Wide Shut with Vulture for the film’s 20th anniversary, Kubrick’s assistant, Leon Vitali, revealed that the director wanted a voice that’s “warm and sensual” but could also “be part of a ritual”. Kubrick sadly died before he could find someone so the production crew were tasked with that responsibility.
After Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman suggested Cate, who happened to be in England where they were shooting, the crew got her to come around to chant creepy stuff into a microphone for a few hours.
It ultimately proved to be a genius move as Cate’s voice was like the pièce de résistance of the whole orgy scene, which you can watch right here.
Just a heads up, it’s incredibly NSFW on quite a few levels so watch at your own discretion. For those who can’t stomach it, here’s a puppy.
As for the woman who physically played the masked woman, Abigail Good, she has no hard feelings about Cate’s voice being used instead of hers as she was happy to have worked on what would be Kubrick’s last film and really cherished her time being on set with both the director and Tom.
So there you have it, Cate Blanchett was (technically) in one of film’s greatest orgy scenes that was directed by Stanley Kubrick and you didn’t even notice. That’s a hell of an thing to have listed on your resume.