Pretty Woman was one of the most unexpected blockbusters of the early '90s. The film's leading man, Richard Gere, hadn't had a hit since 1983's An Officer and a Gentleman, and the young Julia Roberts had yet to attempt a leading role. The film was originally written as a gritty drama, which the studio and director Garry Marshall tempered into a charming if unlikely fairy tale, buoyed by the two leads' undeniable chemistry. The rest is box-office history: the picture eventually pulled in over 450 million dollars worldwide and became a cultural reference point. Some viewers criticized the film for its trivial depiction of prostitution, but Roberts' charming performance is in keeping with the film's light, romantic fantasy tone. She also received a Best Actress nomination later that year.