Jamie Lee Curtis' Family Ties Made Things Awkward For Arnold Schwarzenegger During True Lies

"True Lies" is the red-headed stepchild of James Cameron movies. Even "The Abyss" has petitions for a 4K release, but poor "True Lies" seems to be totally ignored by Fox/Disney and Mr. Cameron. But you know who hasn't forgotten "True Lies?" That's right, the real ones like you and me. We remember. And so does Jamie Lee Curtis, who told a great anecdote a while back about how her famous co-star was doubtful about her being cast as his on-screen wife.

Why, pray tell, was Arnold Schwarzenegger so doubtful about Jamie Lee Curtis playing his wife? Well, turns out it has nothing to do with Jamie Lee's talent, but that they had a personal real-life connection that made it awkward for him.

Some context first: in the movie, Jamie Lee Curtis plays Helen Tasker, a normal mom and wife who is pulled into a world of danger and espionage when she finds out her husband is an international spy. Arnold Schwarzenegger plays her husband and the movie's just as much about Harry and Helen rekindling their romance as it is about the terrorist threat they have to stop. 

One of the key scenes in the movie is Helen's transition from house wife to sexy spy. She even has a ridiculously hot and hilariously funny strip tease scene where she is tasked with seducing a man in the shadows, who just so happens to be her husband, though she doesn't know it at the time. That's probably why Schwarzenegger questioned her casting — because to him, Jamie Lee Curtis was pretty much family.

Schwarzenegger had no reason to worry

The problem arose because Schwarzenegger directed a TV movie in 1992 called "Christmas in Connecticut" which starred Jamie Lee's father, Tony Curtis. As Jamie Lee Curtis explained to Yahoo! Entertainment, it was hard for Schwarzenegger to separate a family friend's daughter from the character she'd be playing. 

"I just don't think he thought of me as his leading lady. I think he thought of me as Tony's little girl. And it was Jim [Cameron] who said, 'No, I've written this for her. She's the one to do this with you.'"

Curtis added that she believed Schwarzenegger was weirded out by the thought of kissing her and maybe felt that it would be like kissing his niece, since he and Tony Curtis were friends. (Schwarzenegger is also more than a decade older than Jamie Lee Curtis, which probably didn't help.) 

Family history aside, the two unquestionably had great onscreen chemistry and from all accounts had a blast filming together. Curtis added that at the end of the day her muscle-bound co-star gave her "the greatest gift," in that he allowed Cameron to give Curtis billing before the title, which was an acknowledgement that this movie was a two-hander and not usual Schwarzenegger solo action outing. 

All that's well and good, but I'm gonna need Disney to step up and give us a 4K remaster of "True Lies" as soon as possible. It's been too long and there's gotta be some money left over after the forty-seven "Avatar" movies they've made, right?