When actor Bruno Oliver booked the role of short order cook Sal in “Birds of Prey: (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn),” he had no idea how significant Sal and his breakfast sandwich were to the story.
“You couldn’t tell from the audition necessarily and as actors, we always worry about our scenes being cut,” Oliver notes. “I really didn’t understand the place the egg sandwich had in the movie until I saw it.”
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“Birds of Prey” centers on Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie) starting a new life after breaking up with the Joker. In an early scene, she stops off for her favorite breakfast sandwich, only to have it knocked from her hands as a series of bounty hunters chase her. In honor of the film hitting digital and streaming this week, Oliver showed us how to make the delicious-looking supporting character.
The recipe takes bacon, eggs, American cheese and bread – Oliver recommends ciabatta so there are “nooks and crannies for the gooey eggness to go into.” Because of the current pandemic, Oliver had to go to four different stores this week to find all the ingredients.
The day before shooting his scene, Oliver practiced cooking the actual sandwich. “It was definitely one of the oddest preparations as an actor I’ve done,” he recalls. “I spent the night destroying my kitchen making egg sandwiches over and over and over again.” And while he did make the sandwich in man takes, the close-up “food porn” shots were done by the catering chef. “There are little things I can’t do – like crack two eggs with one hand.”
Since the release of the film, many viewers have fixated on the sandwich, attempting the recipe at home and even writing stories about the significance of the meal. Oliver admits to being surprised. “I’ve read a lot about the sandwich as a metaphor for Harley’s recovery,” he says. “I’ve read a lot that refer to Sal as the only male in the movie who doesn’t screw her over.”
In addition to making a mean egg sandwich, Oliver is an actor seen in such shows as “The Connors” and “Mad Men” and is on the board of L.A.’s Sacred Fools Theatre Company. In closing, he urges everyone, “Stay safe. And support your arts organizations, even though you can’t go see things right now. We’re all stuck at home and grateful for the artists in the world keeping us entertained.”