“You thought Ledger had it bad,” by Pete Zipf

Jan 4th, 2023 | By | Category: Fake Nonfiction, Prose

Chris Pratt battles demons while preparing for his role of Garfield in the Garfield movie. 

When it started, it was cute. Tuna lunches followed by siestas in small hammocks suctioned cupped to sunny windows. A licked fist at dinner. Biscuit making on the backs of close friends. But what happened next was something of nightmares, nightmares that scary men with motorbike and cigarette addictions dream about when they have nightmares. The kinda stuff that makes you stop thinking about boobs, sex and ass and all of that crap. Like what the Rock has dreams about on Halloween night.

It all started when Pratt got the call to be in the upcoming film production of the film remake of the film adaptation of the famed comic strip series, Garfield.

“I was elated, I called God as soon as the casting call was over to tell him what he already knew, and to thank him for the feast I was about to receive. I cried for nearly 8 days straight like a sad and lonely Jewish man, who hates the holidays, during the festival of lights,” Pratt said.

It was the role of a lifetime. The actor of Parks and Rec fame had nabbed some pretty alluring and block-bustered roles over his tenure in the business. A dinosaur wrestler, he was in a skit in that Movie 43 movie where he shits on the car; he’s Star Lord too.

However, to be a cat, but not just any cat. The cat. The cat that hates Mondays and pajamas, and only likes baked Italian pasta dishes? Pratt knew he had to do much, much more in order to shatter the expectations of the award winning, nuanced, performances his peers have grown accustomed to. But how?

Method acting has been a popular tool bad actors use in order to be better. They will learn their subject; become their subjects; from the bottoms of their feet, to their butts, to the top of their heads. Sometimes even putting on makeup. Oftentimes mimicking their personalities far beyond their performance on stage. The result can be cool.

“I had spoken to God for about an hour or two before he let me know through a pattern in the clouds that he had to go, before he did, he said to me that I must purr if I plan to rawr,” Pratt explains. The very next day Pratt began his transformation. At first it was small. One day a collar appeared, the next a sandbox to make waste in. However, as days turned to weeks, Pratt appeared to his loved ones as having had lost his fucking mind.

“He was licking his asshole, like folding his body into this weird thing and sticking his one leg up really high in the air and separating his toes like a they were reaching for something, then he would just go to town, licking up his pee pee and his butt right during a family dinner,” explains Pratt’s wife, Arnold Schwarzenegger’s daughter.

“I couldn’t stop [Pratt].” Pratt had entered a new reality.

In the past, actors who chose this course of action will most often play other humans. For example, when Jim Carry did that game show movie, he was still a guy playing a guy, playing a guy who was normal.

So, seldom, really, do actors take such a plunge into a non-human performance. Taylor swift has been quoted several times as having said something to the effect of, “Fuck cats, I don’t like them–I want them dead–and I certainly ain’t playing one in a moving picture again, that is for damn sure you fucking cracker,” when asked about her performance in the Cats remake movie of the Cats play that used to be on Broadway. While her sentiments are extreme, they come with a kernel of truth. Many actors have lost their lives trying to do what Pratt had taken on, and far fewer have survived those deaths.

Four months into the transformation, and two into production of the film, the toll the performance had taken on Pratt was astounding. The actor was no longer able to read lines, as his cat persona had become so depraved that Pratt only spoke in purrs and meows, or ear deafening hisses when agitated–or to fend off unwanted production assistants or media attention.

“We really depended on him to read the lines,” says the film’s director Mark Dindal. At some point the wires must have been crossed, not realizing that Garfield was a talking cat, Pratt’s adaptation had landed production a serious issue. “Had we cast him as Odie, it would have been fine. But not only was he [Pratt] shitting in rice pilaf at craft services everyday, he couldn’t even read,” says Dindal.

At this point in time, Pratt was eating mostly Meow Mix and water, as well as the occasional scrap of food fallen to the floor or off of an unwatched plate in a cafeteria corridor. He had lost 120 pounds and began to crudely glue patches of unrecognizable, yet burly, fur on various parts of his body. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s daughter started freaking out basically.

“I had never seen him like this. He was a shell of who he used to be; he used to be a man, and now, now what?” Arnold’s daughter said as she looked like she was starting to get very sad.

With her last bits of patience and might, Arnold’s Daughter placed an open container of sardines atop a blanket inside of a cardboard box by their home’s door. Pratt, intrigued by the smell, ran to it and jumped in, only to be covered by a vented top and hauled out the door. Consumed by fear the cat / man amalgam writhed as he was brought to the vet.

After Arnold’s daughter sat down with the vet and discussed her situation and expressed her interest in putting down the cat. The veterinarian assured Arnold’s daughter that Pratt was a man, and she did not have the authority to kill another human being. The vet then directed Arnold’s daughter’s attention to Pratts underpants. Once examined, small medical bottles began to spill on the floor and break open. Luckily, due to their setting, the vet was able to test the fluid remnants that remained in the containers. Upon further inspection it was presumed that Pratt had been drinking ketamine in order to aid in his transformation process, and placing the empty bottles in his underwear to hide the evidence. With this knowledge in mind, a relief fell over the Pratt household, as well as the production team for the Garfield picture.

“That afternoon I took him home and I smacked the shit out of him, I said no more talking to that bitch Leslie Knope, or Anna Farris ever again OK? You talk to me and God only, that’s it,” Arnold’s daughter remarked. “And then I said enough of this cat shit too, you look gross as hell and I hate it when you only eat that type of food.”

As if acted on by his beholder, Pratt sprung back to his normal self. In the same breath as he thanked his wife and God for his return to normalcy, he ran 12 miles faster than anyone has ever done so, before finally stopping at the Garfield production headquarters.

There he read every single one of his character’s lines in order, take for take until he eventually passed out in a pool of his own sweat.

“I felt so shitty afterward,” Pratt says in remembrance. “I knew I had it in me. I just didn’t know I would end up doing all that weird stuff I did.”

Film production wrapped the following week. Pratt, nor his spouse have seen any resurgent behaviors of cat like activity since the incident.

Garfield, the Mark Dindal and Alcon Entertainment motion picture presentation, is set to debut in the spring of 2023. Critics and fans wait excitedly to determine if Pratt’s dramatic preparation will pay off on the big screen.


Peter Zipf is a Brooklyn based stand-up comedian and comedy writer. Zipf’s style of humor weaves fictional story lines with real life celebrities and trending news events in order to create a silly fantasy world, depicting what could happen if everyone had a little bit more fun and stopped being so darned serious. Famously, Zipf was set to play Batman during the 1992 motion picture presentation, Batman Returns. However production took issue with the comedian being 2 years yet from birth (Zipf born in 1994 in Livingston, NJ) and decided to change directions by casting Michael Keaton instead. Keaton and Zipf remain friendly to this day. Follow along on Zipf’s social media via Instagram @Moral_Orenthal_ for more examples of work / for contact purposes.

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