Bloopers That Snuck Their Way Into Sci-Fi Movies

Science fiction films require attention to detail from both the audience and the filmmakers. The best sci-fi movies of all time — such as "2001: A Space Odyssey," "Close Encounters of the Third Kind," "Blade Runner," or "The Matrix" — are so packed with details that you can rewatch them over and over again, discovering new things each time. Some franchises with extensively expanded universes have deepened our understanding of what's going on in the background. Even if they're only on screen for a few moments, the characters in the Mos Eisley cantina in the original "Star Wars" each have fictional backstories within the spinoff novels and comic books. In the age of social media, sci-fi movie buffs are more active than ever in scouring their favorite films for hidden easter eggs. It's interesting to read the theories that some fans come up with, as some may seem plausible while others are completely ridiculous. There's also more opportunity to uncover plot holes: If audiences pay close enough attention, they can tell if there are any logic errors.

However, that doesn't mean that accidents never happen. Sometimes, things don't go according to plan on set. There are some unforgettable moments in sci-fi movie history that are the result of improvisation or unintended mistakes. Who could forget Rutger Hauer's beautiful "Tears in Rain" speech from the ending of "Blade Runner"? Not every spontaneous moment is as moving as Hauer's soliloquy, though. Here are some bloopers that snuck their way into sci-fi movies.

A Stormtrooper Bangs His Head, Star Wars (1977)

The stormtroopers in the Star Wars franchise aren't exactly the brightest bulbs in the galaxy. Obi-Wan Kenobi (Sir Alec Guinness) is easily able to use a Jedi mind trick on a few Imperial soldiers that are weak-minded. The stormtroopers are also lousy shots. Even when they're able to surround their enemies, they never seem to hit their targets. One particularly clumsy stormtrooper actually bangs his head on a "Death Star" door during a chase sequence in "Star Wars: Episode IV — A New Hope." Although some fans may have thought this was a way of showing the stormtroopers' incompetence, it is actually the result of a blunder during the production. Actor Laurie Goode was having stomach issues during a day of filming. Overwhelmed with discomfort, Goode accidentally clanged his head during one take, and later said he was shocked that director George Lucas included the take in the final cut of the film.

Goode's mistake ended up becoming a source of fascination for "Star Wars" fans. Goode says that it took him many years to claim his legacy, as a few other extras from the film also claimed to be the "hand banging" stormtrooper. The Star Wars franchise managed to explain why these troopers are so erroneous in the later films: Although Emperor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) initially uses a clone army, the stormtroopers in the original trilogy are civilians that have been recruited and brainwashed.

Quill Drops The Orb, Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)

Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) isn't your standard Marvel Cinematic Universe hero. Although he claims to be the notorious outlaw "Star-Lord," Quill hasn't quite earned that reputation. His affable quality is one of the reasons that the "Guardians of the Galaxy" films stand out within the MCU: the Guardians don't know the first thing about saving the universe, they're just a bunch of "losers" that have to band together.

However, one particularly amusing moment from the first "Guardians of the Galaxy" film wasn't scripted. Quill offers the orb to the Collector (Benicio del Toro) but accidentally drops it. In a director's commentary, James Gunn suggested that Pratt had inadvertently dropped the prop while they were filming. Pratt later told Gunn that he did it on purpose, but Gunn said that he only believes him "about 90%." However, Pratt countered Gunn's skepticism by tweeting that it was completely intentional. Citing that it was better "to ask forgiveness than permission," he said that he had learned the art of improvising jokes during his time on "Parks and Recreation."

Donald Glover Trips, The Martian (2015)

"The Martian" has one of the best ensemble casts in recent years. There are many great actors in the film, but Donald Glover's hilarious performance as Rich Purnell managed to be a standout. Rich is a brilliant astrodynamicist who comes up with a risky plan to rescue Mark Watney (Matt Damon) from Mars. Rich's unpolished nature ends up irritating Teddy Sanders (Jeff Daniels), the director of NASA. Glover adds some of the best jokes in the film.

When he first comes up with his plan, Rich is so excited that he leaps out of his chair and accidentally falls over. It's a hilarious moment in the film, but during filming, the crew was actually concerned about Glover's safety. Glover revealed on "Conan" that he needed an ice pack after he accidentally tripped. However, director Ridley Scott chose to leave the take in the film. He felt that it was important to capture authentic moments of human error.

Fury Examines Naked Skrull, Captain Marvel (2019)

The recent "Captain Marvel" film used impressive digital de-aging techniques to show a younger version of Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) in the 1990s. Before he became the veteran leader in "The Avengers," Fury had a sense of humor about his job investigating extraterrestrial creatures. Fury is skeptical about the alien visitors, and his banter with Carol Danvers (Brie Larson) turns the film into a fun buddy movie.

The aliens known as the Skrulls have the ability to impersonate others. After a Skrull that was pretending to be Agent Coulson (Clark Gregg) is killed, Fury examines the corpse, lifting the sheet covering the alien to check out what its body looks like naked. Directors Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck said that this moment was completely improvised by Jackson. They thought the scene was so hilarious that they decided to keep it in the final cut.

Peggy Touches Steve's Chest, Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)

"Captain America: The First Avenger" had a difficult task ahead of it. How do you bring a character that is essentially a tool of propaganda and turn him into a compelling protagonist? The film expertly showed how Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) earns his place as a hero. Initially, he's a scrawny kid who just wants to serve his country. It's only through the experimental "super-soldier" procedure that he gains all the powers of Captain America.

When Steve's new muscle-bound body is revealed, the scientist Dr. Abraham Erskine (Stanley Tucci), the U.S. Colonel Chester Phillips (Tommy Lee Jones), and the British MI6 agent Peggy Carter (Haley Atwell) are all shocked by his transformation. They can't believe that the skinny kid that they once knew now has the body of a warrior. Peggy instinctively reaches out to touch Steve's chest. Atwell said that it had been instinctive, but "they kept it in the film." Although it's a humorous moment, Peggy's relationship with Steve turned into the most successful romantic storyline within the MCU. Even if she's impressed by his muscles, Peggy is Steve's equal in every way.

Stanley Kubrick's Reflection, 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

Stanley Kubrick is one of the most notoriously meticulous filmmakers of all time. Over five decades after its release, "2001: A Space Odyssey" still baffles audiences. It's one of the few films that you can watch over and over again and discover new details each time. There are still questions that fans have, such as "What does the "monolith" represent?" or "What happened during Dr. David Bowman's (Keir Dullea) trip into the stargate?" The ambiguity of the film is one of the reasons that it has endured.

Even though he is a visionary, Kubrick is still a filmmaker capable of making mistakes. During Dr. Heywood Floyd's (William Sylvester) examination of the monolith on the moon, Kubrick's reflection can be seen in the astronaut suit. Was this just a blunder that the production crew missed? Or is this another Kubrickian detail that has a deeper meaning?

Art Department Garbage Can, Independence Day (1996)

If you're the type of science fiction movie fan that likes tight, reasonable storylines that make complete logical sense, then Roland Emmerich's "Independence Day" probably isn't for you. The crowd-pleasing, silly sci-fi disaster film is a lot of fun to watch if you don't take it too seriously. If you can buy into the idea that an advanced alien civilization can be brought down by a computer virus (and that the world's militaries would unite behind an American plan), then sit back and enjoy! Otherwise, you may need to look for more elevated material.

Although some sci-fi fans have complained that "Independence Day" is rife with plot holes, there was one error that wasn't intentional at all. David Levinson (Jeff Goldblum) has a breakdown in the Area 51 bunker and complains about the effects of deforestation, pollution, and the government's incompetence. He accidentally knocks over a trash bin that is labeled "Art Dept." Does the government's alien investigation unit have an arts program, or did a crew member forget to remove a trash can from the set?

Daryl Hannah Cut Her Elbow, Blade Runner (1982)

Rutger Hauer's incredible "Tears in Rain" monologue wasn't the only unintended moment during the filming of "Blade Runner" that was included within the final version of the film. When Pris (Daryl Hannah) goes to meet with the genetic designer J.F. Sebastian (William Sanderson), she slips and falls, cutting her elbow on a car window. Even though the film uses some extraordinary special effects and makeup work, the blood in the scene is real. Hannah actually chipped her elbow, leaving a wound that required eight stitches. Scott decided to keep this take in the film.

Pris' clumsiness helps make her a more relatable character. One of the most beautiful things about "Blade Runner" is that the replicants are ironically more "human" than the actual human beings. Replicants have a limited lifespan, so they value the time that they have. Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford) only learns the value of life by forming a romantic relationship with the replicant Rachael (Sean Young). Pris is one of the most underrated characters in "Blade Runner," being more than just Roy Batty's girlfriend. Designed to be a "basic pleasure model," Pris shows her intelligence by earning J. F. Sebastian's trust to aid in Batty's plan.

Castor Troy's Singing, Face/Off (1997)

John Woo's 1997 science fiction action film "Face/Off" is genuinely one of the most unhinged movies ever made. Woo is inherently an over-the-top filmmaker, and he managed to get two of the craziest performances of the 1990s out of John Travolta and Nicolas Cage. "Face/Off" is so gleefully silly that you're essentially forced to watch Cage and Travolta compete for who can be more ridiculous.

Some of the best additions to the film actually came from Cage himself. In an interview on the "Happy Sad Confused" podcast, Cage's co-star Alessandro Nivola revealed that the conversation about a "sex sandwich" came directly from Cage. Apparently, Cage and Nivola would be joking around, and the assistant director would write down everything that they said. When Woo read the transcriptions, he loved the new lines so much that he added them to the script. Nivola said he "couldn't believe the stuff we were coming up with was just so random." Whether or not "Face/Off" is self-aware is a question that sci-fi fans have pondered for years. Nivola's comments suggest that Woo knew what he was doing, and allowed his stars to flesh out the characters' personalities to make them even sillier, as in the moment where Sean Archer (Travolta) holds Castor Troy (Cage) at gunpoint and the latter breaks into song: "I'm ready ... ready for the big ride, baby!" The improvised tune (which Cage made up) stayed in the movie and is even repeated later on.

K-2SO Slaps Cassian, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016)

Wise-cracking droids are an essential part of the Star Wars saga. In fact, the original 1977 film opens from the perspective of R2-D2 (Kenny Baker) and C-3PO (Anthony Daniels), who find themselves mixed up in yet another galactic adventure. However, 2016's "Rogue One: A Star Wars Story" features one of the funniest droids that the franchise had ever had in the reprogrammed Imperial droid K-2SO (Alan Tudyk), who has a bit of a chip on his shoulder.

K-2SO helps his rebel ally Cassian Andor (Diego Luna) perform a top-secret mission in order to infiltrate the Empire. Since K-2SO looks like any other Imperial droid, he can easily disguise himself. In one scene, K2SO pretends to be holding Cassian and Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones) as his captives. K-2SO smacks Cassain's head, and remarks "and there's a fresh one if you mouth off again." According to Tudyk, this was one of many improvised lines that made the final cut. "Rogue One" is one of the darkest films within the "Star Wars" franchise. Set right before the events of "A New Hope," the film shows that the line between good and evil isn't so black and white. Considering how humorless the rest of the film is, K-2SO's quips are critical to making this dark action thriller still feel like a "Star Wars" adventure.