Michael Douglas' Presidential haircut -- The actor gets a trim for "The American President' and freaks out the costume designer

By Cindy Pearlman
December 16, 1994 at 05:00 AM EST

You’ve just been hired to play a widowed Commander-in-Chief in Rob Reiner‘s The American President — what do you do? If you’re Disclosure‘s Michael Douglas, first you ”watch a fair amount of White House press conferences,” then you visit the place with your dad, Kirk, a recent Kennedy Center honoree, and then you cut your hair. Sounds simple, but apparently Douglas’ shearing sent out more shock waves than Clinton’s Christophe clip on the tarmac of LAX. ”The costume designer saw me and was terrified,” says Douglas, who costars in the romantic comedy with Annette Bening. ”She told Rob, ‘His hair is too short!’ So Rob called and said, ‘How short is it? It isn’t like Falling Down? Please tell me it isn’t that short!”’ Douglas, however, was able to allay his director’s fears. ”I said, ‘Rob, it will be fine. It’ll be just like what’s his name from Texas — Ross Perot. Yeah. I’ll be like, ‘Hi, I’m President Ross.”’