The Princess Bride remains a beloved, iconic fantasy film and along with Cary Elwes’ lovesick Westley, one of audiences’ favorite heroes from the movie is Iñigo Montoya, played by Mandy Patinkin. In an emotional TikTok recorded yesterday, Patinkin revealed exactly what was going through his mind while filming a memorable scene.
The story begins with dozens of users recently seeing a plea from one TikTok user, Amanda Webb. They then tagged Mandy Patinkin’s TikTok account, and her video found its way to the actor and his wife Kathryn Grody. In their response, you can see the couple — especially Patinkin — getting emotional and tearing up as Webb tells her story. When the actor responds, at times choking up and finding it difficult to speak, you learn that not only was the loss of Patinkin’s father on his mind while filming fan infamous scene in The Princess Bride, it was part of his motivation to take the part of Iñigo Montoya in the first place. Patinkin says that when he first read the script, he knew that if he got the part, it would be as if he killed the cancer that killed his father and that he would get to visit his dad. You can watch the actor’s video response, with the full story, below.
Mandy Patinkin asked for Webb’s father’s name, explaining that he says prayers every night for loved ones and that it helps him feel that they remain with him. He wanted to add Webb’s father’s name to the list so he could say prayers for him and “hang out” with him. Patinkin had more love and wisdom for Webb in the comments. He explained he had lost his father when he was 18, that his wife Kathryn had lost both of her parents — who died within a year of one another — when she was 25, and that this had helped to forge a bond between them.
Mandy Patinkin’s character enters the story of The Princess Bride as a hired swordsman for the scheming Vizzini (Wallace Shawn). Left behind by Vizzini to kill Westley, Montoya proves as honorable a man as he is skilled by giving his opponent the opportunity to rest before their duel. During their brief respite, we learn of Montoya’s quest for vengeance against the man who murdered his father: Count Rugen, aka the Six Fingered Man (Christopher Guest). In the climax of the film — after Montoya joins forces with Westley to save Buttercup (Robin Wright) — the swordsman confronts Rugen. When it becomes clear Montoya is dominating the battle, Rugen offers Montoya anything he wants if he will let the count live. Montoya stabs Rugen, stares in his eyes, and famously says, “I want my father back, you son of a bitch.”
It was this moment that was of interest to TikTok user Amanda Webb when she posted a video hoping it might find its way across the app to Mandy Patinkin. Webb explains that her father died this March of mantle cell lymphoma. One of the movies both Webb and her father both counted among their favorites was The Princess Bride, and Iñigo Montoya was her father’s favorite character. Webb had since heard that Patinkin’s own father had passed away from cancer and that the actor was thinking about his loss when he said the famous line while killing Count Rugen. The loss of Webb’s father had added an extra level of meaning to the already powerful scene, and she wanted to know if the story about Patinkin’s inspiration was true.
You can watch her original video for Mandy Patinkin below.