Elijah Wood reportedly slipped on home made hobbit feet for his while Hugh Laurie faked an American accent and filmed his in a Namibian bathroom.
Their enterprise paid off though, their amateur audition tapes earning them their roles as Frodo Baggins and Gregory House respectively.
Actress Felicity Jones was equally as inventive when it came to securing her role in Like Crazy, filming scenes at her home to send to director Drake Doremus.
“It was obviously a part that a lot of people would want and so I felt like I had to do something a little bit different,” she explains. “I got in the shower.
“There is a key scene at the very end of the movie when they’re deciding, or kind of interrogating their relationship as to where it’s going to go, in the shower. I recreated it in my apartment in London.”
Drake was persuaded that 28-year-old Birmingham-born Felicity was perfect for the part of Anna, an aspiring journalist who falls for Jacob (Anton Yelchin), a young American designer, while she is studying in Los Angeles.
The film follows their attempts to maintain the relationship when they are separated by continents, visa issues and busy careers, and facing romantic temptations which are closer to home.
“It’s about the struggle of being in love with another person,” she says. “You fall in love and that’s the easy bit.
“It’s about how one navigates beyond that, how can they practically be together?
“They are constantly returning back to this heyday and they’ve mythologised their own relationship.
“They are dealing with this huge problem of the distance but what it’s really about is the distance between human beings.”
The dialogue in Like Crazy is largely improvised, with the director just giving the cast an outline for each scene.
A hand-held camera was used, adding to the feeling of intimacy and realism as it captured seemingly unguarded moments.
It was a liberating, yet intense, experience for the actors as the camera was kept running almost constantly and they could never break character.
“You have to because you want to immerse yourself in that person’s world,” says Felicity. “When we first met Drake immediately said: ‘I hope you guys are prepared for this because it’s going to take every bit of your soul’... and it did.”
It also gave her the opportunity to right what she felt were some cinematic wrongs in the way English girls are portrayed in American movies.
"Sometimes in English movies too...” she adds. “They rarely seem to deal with the ordinary English person, it’s always the extremity.
"Either they are really posh or they’re not, there’s nothing in-between.