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Ben Stiller reveals Zoolander's original, much darker ending

Ben Stiller in Zoolander
(Image credit: Paramount Pictures)

Ben Stiller has revealed the original ending to Zoolander – and it's much darker than the version that made it to screen.

Speaking to Esquire, Stiller explained that the finale would have seen Derek Zoolander facing down a bullet train on the track. "He has to shoot the 'Blue Steel' or 'Magnum' look at the train to stop it, and it doesn't work," Stiller explained, referring to the character's infamous modelling looks. "The train plows and kills him, basically, and then he goes up to heaven." The studio didn't find this funny enough, so opted for a happier ending instead.  

The comedy follows male model Derek as he's brainwashed into attempting to kill the Prime Minister of Malaysia. Toward the end, a weapon is thrown at the politician, which Derek stops with his famous 'Magnum' look. The film then finishes with the model opening the catchily named The Derek Zoolander Center for Kids Who Can't Read Good and Who Wanna Learn to Do Other Stuff Good Too, and having a child with Christine Taylor's Matilda. All in all, a much cheerier ending than Zoolander being sent up to heaven after being killed by a train.

Zoolander co-starred Owen Wilson as Derek's modeling rival Hansel, and Will Ferrell as the villain Jacobim Mugatu. Other members of the star-studded cast include David Bowie, Billy Zane, Milla Jovovich, Vince Vaughn, David Duchovny, Jerry Stiller, Patton Oswalt, Alexander Skarsgård, and Jennifer Coolidge.

A sequel titled Zoolander 2 was released in 2016 with another starry cast: Katy Perry, Tommy Hilfiger, Naomi Campbell, Justin Bieber, John Malkovich, Ariana Grande, Kate Moss, and many more besides all had cameos in the sequel.

Zoolander celebrated its 20th anniversary this September 20. To see all the major movies headed our way this year, check out our guide to 2021's upcoming movie release dates.

Molly Edwards

I'm a freelance Entertainment Writer here at GamesRadar+, covering all things film and TV for our Total Film and SFX sections. I previously worked on the Disney magazines team at Immediate Media, and also wrote on the CBeebies, MEGA!, and Star Wars Galaxy titles after getting my BA in English.