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Glen Powell Thought He Ruined Hidden Figures The First Time He Saw The Movie

There really isn't any doubt that for an actor, the best way to boost your confidence in your own performance is to co-star in the biggest film of the year. Doesn't sound too hard, does it? Well, even though Glen Powell locked on to that perfect scenario, world events caused him to wait for the rewards. Despite nailing his role as John Glenn in 2016's "Hidden Figures," his work in "Top Gun: Maverick" wasn't fully appreciated by fans and critics at its scheduled premiere date, due to Paramount deciding it was best to wait until after the pandemic ended to release the film (via CNN). 

That wait paid off as "Top Gun: Maverick" became the highest-grossing film of the year 2022, propelling Powell into a higher altitude of his acting career. For some moviegoers, the long-awaited sequel was the first time Powell caught their attention. In "Top Gun: Maverick," Powell plays Jake "Hangman" Seresin, a cocky fighter pilot, who refuses to buy into Maverick's (Cruise) highly touted reputation. Powell nailed the performance by perfectly blending his overconfidence with a "get the job done" attitude. And as much as he's been praised for his contribution to the smash hit, he said during Variety's "Actors on Actors" that he definitely didn't carry the same confidence as this character, especially when watching his performance in "Hidden Figures."

Powell thought he had ruined true-life legacies

Glen Powell recently sat across from Kate Hudson to chat about their acting careers (via YouTube). Powell revealed that despite co-starring in the year's biggest blockbuster, his first experience watching "Hidden Figures" didn't sit well with him. "Hidden Figures" follows the women who, behind the scenes, played a large role in NASA's original space program. Powell played astronaut John Glenn in the film, and when he saw a rough cut, his first cringe-worthy reaction came from a special effects-less scene. 

Powell recalls watching the "Hidden Figures" scene, which had not yet been enhanced with post-production CGI. "I'm in a little capsule and things like that," he said. "And they have a guy that's puppeteering things floating on wires, but that was all in the cut that I saw, so I could literally see a man puppeteering floating things." Powell explained to Hudson that viewing the scene without the effects only enhanced how unworthy he felt as a performer, compared to the other actors in the film. While probably being way too harsh on himself, Powell felt that he paled in comparison to the film's stars, going on to say that he felt his performance ruined the film. 

Despite Powell's doubts about his own performance, the film went on to garner rave reviews, including positive reviews for his performance (via Roger Ebert). Hopefully, Powell has learned his lesson and will, from now on, wait for a film's final cut before passing judgment on his performance.