Reese Witherspoon once explained entire How Do You Know plot to plane after movie cut out

Before there were little screens attached to the back of everyone's headrests, in-flight entertainment was often limited to one pre-selected film shown on an airline's communal television screens. If the movie sucked, or just plain didn't work, then everyone was out of luck — that is, unless Reese Witherspoon was on board.

The actress, who stars in Netflix's upcoming rom-com Your Place or Mine, revealed that she once regaled an entire plane of passengers with the story arc of her 2010 film How Do You Know after a screening of the film cut out during a flight.

"It was like a five-hour flight and I walk in and they're like, 'And the movie today is gonna be How Do You Know starring Reese Witherspoon,'" she recalled on Tuesday's episode of Late Night With Seth Meyers. "I was like, 'Oh my God. I have nowhere to hide. This is so embarrassing.'"

However, Witherspoon got an opportunity to make the best of an awkward situation when the film came to an abrupt halt about an hour and a half too early.

"Probably, maybe 10 minutes into the inflight movie, it cut out, and the clip broke," she said. "So I went to the front of the plane and I got on the microphone… I was like, 'Hi, guys. I don't think the movie's coming back, so I'm just gonna walk you, beat by beat, [through] what happened.'"

Witherspoon then proceeded to lay out the premise of the romantic comedy, which featured a whole roster of Hollywood greats including Owen Wilson, Paul Rudd, Kathryn Hahn, and Jack Nicholson.

"So, first of all, I'm going out with Owen Wilson. It's not going well. And he's a professional baseball player, and you know that's gonna go south," she said. "So, I have this crazy great date with Paul Rudd, but his dad is asking him to go to jail for him because he's committed a crime. Guys, I don't know what's gonna happen! Am I gonna go with Owen Wilson? Am I gonna go with Paul Rudd? What's gonna happen? And they were like, 'Yes!' It was really fun."


Everett Collection Reese Witherspoon and Paul Rudd in 'How Do You Know'

Host Seth Meyers was definitely a fan of Witherspoon's in-flight save, joking, "I just like that those people, for the rest of the year, were telling people, 'You gotta fly United because the movie never finishes, but they have the star there and they will talk you through it.'"

Witherspoon replied, "It was actually so fun and funny to get to tell people the entire plot of my movie in like three minutes."

Watch Witherspoon discuss the film — and working with Ashton Kutcher in Your Place or Mine — in the clip above.

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