Currently promoting his new film 'Tropic Thunder', which he both stars in and directs, Ben Stiller has said that he is haunted by the memory of upsetting Steven Spielberg.

As a young actor, Stiller was working on Spielberg's 'Empire of the Sun' when he called 'cut' on a lengthy scene after messing up his line.

Speaking to USA Today, he recalled: "There was a six-minute steadicam shot with a young Christian Bale. He goes outside, all the way through the camp.

"He walks through the whole barracks and gets to the end... and there's John Malkovich and Joe Pantoliano and me. It's a six-minute shot. And then I screwed up my line. My one little line."

The line may have worked but Stiller stopped, cursed and waved off the other actors to try it again, rendering the epic sequence unusable.

Stiller continued: "I hear this huge silence. Steven Spielberg is in another building watching on the monitors and he yells: `What happened?'

"I'm like, `I just yelled cut because I screwed up,' and he's yelling, `No, no, you never cut!'

"I literally turned white and shrunk because my hero and idol, Steven Spielberg, is yelling at me."

He added: "For years I lived with this shame... but we've laughed about it since because he remembers it too. I was mortified."

'Tropic Thunder', starring Stiller, Jack Black and Robert Downey Jr, opens on 19 September.

Check out our 'Tropic Thunder' premiere gallery here.