For a majority of The Shallows, Blake Lively is the only human being on the screen, but, contrary to popular belief, she's not the only star. And, no, I'm not talking about the shark. The real animal star of The Shallows is the seagull. Although the animal is being kept pretty under wraps, only briefly showing up in the trailers hanging out behind Lively's injured Nancy when she takes shelter on the rock, it plays a major part in the story. Seriously, while the seagull's role in the trailer is deceptively small, there's no doubt that Steven the Seagull is the breakout star of The Shallows .
Small spoilers ahead! In the movie, the seagull turns out to be much more than just a set piece. In fact, it is really Nancy's biggest (and only) ally against the great white shark out to kill her. Alone and injured in the ocean, Nancy befriends the seagull, naming him Steven Seagull (get it?) and bouncing ideas off of him for her escape. It's tough to upstage Lively fighting for her life in a bikini, and yet, somehow, Steven Seagull manages to steal scenes right out from under her. This is probably due to the fact that, unlike the shark, the seagull was actually a real animal on set. In fact, months ago, Lively posted a photo of herself with Steven from the set on Instagram.
Now, Steven might be the breakout star of the movie, but he was also apparently kind of a diva on set. According to Lively, acting opposite a bird was a little complicated, especially when it came to her fake wounds and makeup. "[He] really liked the taste of my prosthetic wounds, so he would attack me a lot," Lively said during an appearance on Late Night with Seth Meyers . Seagull attacks aside, the bird took a liking to Lively, and would occasionally perch on her shoulder. It should also be noted that Lively is entirely on board with the seagull's rising star. During a Twitter Q&A for the film, she admitted that the seagull, real name Sully, was "the real star of the movie."
Audiences and critics tend to agree with Lively's assessment, taking to Twitter to voice their love for the new breakout animal actor.
Steven Seagull could be the most important character to come out of a summer movie in a long while, and here's hoping Sully enjoys every minute of his newfound fame.
Images: Columbia Pictures; blakelively/Instagram