Geena Davis Recalls ‘Awful’ TV Interview With Bill Murray, Who Pulled Down Her Dress Strap: His Behavior Was ‘So Devastating’

Geena Davis’ uncomfortable experiences with Bill Murray extended beyond the set of their 1990 crime comedy “Quick Change.” Davis has already spoken about her “bad” audition for the film, which allegedly included Murray trying to use a massage device on her, but in a new interview with i magazine she addressed a press tour interview the two did in which Murray took down her dress strap and repeatedly touched her arm. The actors were on “The Arsenio Hall Show” to promote “Quick Change.”

“Oh, you saw?” Davis asked the reporter who brought up the Arsenio Hall interview, which is still available to view online. “Isn’t it stunning? It’s awful.”

During the interview, Murray touched Davis’ arm as Davis told Hall, “I did have to audition. It was a lot like this in fact.”

“He touched you a lot in the audition?” Hall asked Davis.

“Yeah, I swear,” Davis responded. “The first thing he did was take my shirt out of my pants and start tickling my stomach.”

Davis told this story to Hall with a light attitude and a smile on her face, but reflecting back on it she now said, “I forgot that. Telling it that way, just as a humorous anecdote, I must have thought, ‘Well, it’s ultimately funny, or makes a good story,’ when in fact it was so devastating.” 

Variety has reached out to Murray’s representative for further comment.

Davis revealed the “bad” audition with Murray in her new memoir, “Dying of Politeness.” The actor writes about meeting Murray for the first time in his hotel room, where he made repeated attempts to use a massage device on her. Davis refused.

“I said no multiple times, but he wouldn’t relent,” Davis writes in the book. “I realized with a profound sadness that I didn’t yet have the ability to withstand this onslaught — or to simply walk out.” 

“That was bad,” Davis told The Times UK about the incident. “The way he behaved at the first meeting… I should have walked out of that or profoundly defended myself, in which case I wouldn’t have got the part. I could have avoided that treatment if I’d known how to react or what to do during the audition. But, you know, I was so non-confrontational that I just didn’t…”

Davis also writes in her memoir about another incident during the making of “Quick Change” in which Murray screamed at her in her trailer. He allegedly continued to berate her in front of the film’s cast and crew when she showed up to the set.

Davis is far from the only actor who has detailed an uncomfortable experience working with Murray. Lucy Liu revealed on a 2021 episode of the Los Angeles Times’ “Asian Enough” podcast that Murray made “unacceptable” and “inexcusable” insults to her on the “Charlie’s Angels” set. Seth Green, meanwhile, revealed that he was only 9 years old when Murray grabbed him by his ankles and dumped him in the trash while backstage at “Saturday Night Live.”

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