As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess Bride by Cary Elwes (review)

October 22, 2014 All Reviews, Memoir, Movies 0 ★★★★★

As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess Bride by Cary Elwes (review)As You Wish by Cary Elwes
Published by Simon and Schuster on October 14th 2014
Number of Pages: 272
Genres: Biography & Autobiography, Humor, Memoir, Popular Culture
Source: Purchased
Format: Hardcover
Purchase: At Amazon

Standing on the stage for the twenty-fifth anniversary of The Princess Bride, I felt and almost overwhelming sense of gratitude and nostalgia. It was a remarkable night and it brought back vivid memories of being part of what appears to have become a cult classic film about pirates and princesses, giants and jesters, cliffs of insanity, and of course rodents of unusual size.

It truly was as fun to make the movie as it is to watch it, from getting to work on William Goldman's brilliant screenplay to being directed by the inimitable Rob Reiner. It is not an exaggeration to say that most days on set were exhilarating, from wrestling Andre the Giant, to the impossibility of playing mostly dead with Billy Crystal cracking jokes above me, to choreographing the Greatest Sword Fight in Modern Times with Mandy Patinkin, to being part of the Kiss That Left All the Others Behind with Robin Wright.

In this book I've gathered many more behind-the-scenes stories and hopefully answers to many of the questions we've all received over the years from fans. Additionally, Robin, Billy, Rob, and Mandy, as well as Christopher Guest, Wallace Shawn, Fred Savage, Chris Sarandon, Carol Kane, Norman Lear, and William Goldman graciously share their own memories and stories from making this treasured film.

If you'd like to know a little bit more about the making of The Princess Bride as seen through the eyes of a young actor who got much more than he bargained for, along with the rest of this brilliant cast, then all I can say you wish.


Okay, so technically this isn’t a fantasy or sci-fi book. But it’s all about The Princess Bride, which is a fantasy movie, so it counts. Right?

As I read this book, the narrator in my head had Cary Elwes’ voice. As it should be of course, since I have loved The Princess Bride since I first saw it in 1987 at the age of 9. I can quote almost every line in the movie, and getting to read about what was going on in the minds and behind the scenes of the cast was absolutely fantastic.

Don’t forget to look at the inside of the cover of the hardback. Most covers don’t have much on the part that actually touches the book, but this one has a special surprise. And no, I won’t spoil it for you.

Most of this book is told by Cary Elwes, but there are a lot of comments from other cast members as well as the producers and directors. It was fascinating seeing just what was going through their minds at different points, and what they remember even after all these years. Cary throws a lot of in-jokes into the book from the film. Some will sound a bit strange if you haven’t seen the movie or read the book, but then again, you wouldn’t be reading this book if you have no knowledge of The Princess Bride.

Some of the most famous bits, never would have happened if Cary hadn’t thought of it and mentioned it to Rob Reiner. Such as diving head first into the quicksand in the Fire Swamp instead of feet first. Or letting Fezzik use him as a human puppet when he comes back from being “mostly dead” on the ramparts overlooking the castle.

This is truly a wonderful book, and includes so much from Cary as well as everyone else. There are also 16 full pages of photos, some in color and some in black and white. If you are a fan of The Princess Bride, you need to own this book.


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