Did Will Ferrell Really Eat Cotton Balls In Elf?

There's no way you can watch "Goodfellas" without craving prison sauce, "Hook" without wondering what imaginary pie would actually taste like, or the end credits scene of "The Avengers" without wanting your own helping of shawarma, too. Despite food not being the main focus of any of these movies, the combination of great cinematography and convincing acting makes for some memorable food scenes.

For the holiday classic "Elf," the scene that comes to mind is most likely the spaghetti that Will Ferrell's character, Buddy, prepared for breakfast one morning. Sure, layers of marshmallows, M&M's, and Pop Tarts piled high over a mountain of cold spaghetti might sound sickeningly sweet, but it isn't exactly inedible. As for the movie's other "food" scenes — specifically the ones in which Buddy eats gum off the subway railing and cotton balls in the doctor's office — it's a different story, one that fortunately did not actually involve Will Ferrell indulging in anything as gross as you'd think (via Black Film).

So, what exactly went down when Buddy at said cotton balls?

No camera tricks were used when Will Ferrell ate cotton balls in 'Elf'

According to E! News, the cotton balls Will Ferrell ate in "Elf" were simply undyed cotton candy. This made it so that the production staff didn't have to bother with any editing tricks or sneaky camera angles because Ferrell didn't have to stop to spit out actual cotton balls between takes, the actor confirmed to Black Film. This, however, didn't mean there wasn't any acting involved in the scene. It might've been brief in the final cut, but Ferrell had to eat hundreds of cotton candy balls in the process — "a few bushels" worth, he told Black Film.

"That was tough. I ingested a lot of sugar in this movie, and I didn't get a lot of sleep," he went on to share. "I constantly stayed up. But anything for the movie, I'm there." Clearly eating fake cotton balls is just as much of a challenge as eating real ones, but it's safe to say it ended up being worth it, since the scene became one of the funniest moments in the entire Christmas classic.