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05/03/2013 08:01 am ET

William Friedkin: 'Cruising' Was Almost Directed By Steven Spielberg (VIDEO)

Legendary filmmaker William Friedkin joined HuffPost Live on Thursday to discuss the release of his new memoir, "The Friedkin Connection," and his career as a director of classics such as "The Exorcist" and "The French Connection."

When host Ricky Camilleri asked about one of Friedkin's more shocking films, "Cruising," a murder mystery set against the backdrop of the hardcore gay S&M scene in New York City, Friedkin revealed he wasn't the first director chosen for the story. It was actually Steven Spielberg. Look at the trailer below and try to imagine Steven Spielberg directing this film.

Friedkin tried to imagine how the film would be different, saying "there might have been a shark running around in the damn club!"

"Cruising" was released in 1980 and immediately met with protests from both the gay community, which felt it would promote old stereotypes, as well as conservatives offended by the film's frank depiction of S&M culture.

WATCH THE FULL SEGMENT AT HUFFPOST LIVE

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