The actor featured in Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg’s 2013 disaster comedy This Is The End, about a group of celebrities who get stuck in James Franco‘s house after a series of catastrophic events destroy Los Angeles.
In the film, Cera plays a fictionalised version of himself and ends up on the receiving end of a hard slap from Rihanna after he smacks her in the butt.
Speaking in a recent interview with GQ, Cera reflected on his most iconic film and TV roles when he explained what went into the slap sequence.
“She definitely hit me,” he recalled. “But really, I wanted that. I think it’s a lot funnier and a lot more convincing. A fake slap just doesn’t look good, so she hit me hard. Yeah, she really sent me flying, and it was great. And now it’s on film forever, this pain that I experienced.”
Rogan previously explained how they staged the moment back when he was promoting the film in 2013.
“In the script, Michael Cera slaps Rihanna’s ass and she doesn’t hit him back in the script but he asked her ‘Can I slap your ass for real?’” he explained on the Sway In The Morning podcast,” and she said, ‘You can slap my ass for real if I can slap you back in the face for real’.”
Rogan continued: “And he was like ‘Okay!’ We did it like three or four times and on the fourth time she, like, smacked the fucking shit out of him so hard. She cupped his ear and actually whacked out his equilibrium, and he had to go lay down in his trailer for around half an hour. But that’s the take we used in the movie, we didn’t add any sound to that or anything.”
In another interview with Rolling Stone this year, Cera said that was a “slightly revised version”, adding that “takes weren’t working” and he “thought it would look a lot better if she hit me”.
He added: “I don’t think it took much convincing to get her to do it. I just thought it would look a lot better than a fake slap would because you can really feel it. It just looks a lot funnier!”
Elsewhere, Cera revealed that he nearly lost out on the chance to plan Allan in Greta Gerwig’s Barbie.