©Columbia Pictures/Courtesy Everett Collection
When Billy Crystal was honored at the Kennedy Center, of course his When Harry Met Sally costar Meg Ryan was on hand to help pay tribute to the comedy actor and address their most famous scene.
“The scene came really naturally to me, and I really have Billy to thank for that,” Ryan, our current cover star, said in her speech, referring to the iconic moment when her character, Sally Albright, reenacts an orgasm at a crowded deli to prove to her friend Harry (Crystal) that he can't always tell when a woman is “faking it.” Per Us, she added, “I’ve actually never been around anyone who made faking an orgasm easier. So thank you, Billy.”
In a candid interview, the 62-year-old talks directing during the pandemic, her worst date ever, the joy of parenting, the “moonshot” trifecta of her three highest-grossing rom-coms, and more. And yes, there are some really great sweaters.
“Of course, Harry is a very broad character: noxious, insensitive, and terrified of commitment,” Ryan continued. “But if you take out all of Harry’s flaws, what you have underneath is pure Billy. And what he brings to all of his characters is heart. Harry is his heart because Billy listens to his [heart], and as his wife, Janice, has known for over 50 years—falling in love with Billy is a pretty easy thing to do.”
In addition to being a hilarious performance, what many people don't realize is that the deli scene is also an indicator of character growth. The first time Harry and Sally share a meal, during their postcollege road trip, he breaks the hard truth to her that she's never had “great sex.” He's the more experienced and honest person in the friendship. Years later, however, that dynamic has completely shifted. Sally no longer has any shame around sex and is the one schooling Harry.
Though she's branched out into writing and directing, Meg Ryan hasn't strayed far from her romance roots, and recently released the later-in-life love story What Happens Later, costarring David Duchovny. “These characters are in their 50s. It’s a different story than when you’re in your 20s,” she told Glamour of the charming flick. “I wanted to make something beautiful and offer a new way of thinking about what love is.”
She also let us in on the moment she knew her son, The Boys star Jack Quaid, would be following in her footsteps: “I remember seeing him in a middle school production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. He was playing Bottom. I was newly divorced from his dad [Dennis Quaid], [who] was seated at the other side of the gym. I had my head in my hands and was like, ‘Oh, no. He’s good. He’s really good.’ I leaned forward, and I see Dennis, and he’s also leaning forward with his head in his hands. I just knew.”
Originally Appeared on Glamour