A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, no one had ever heard of a little movie called Star Wars. Of course, George Lucas' "space opera," which revived sci-fi as a genre for the masses, is now a classic. The Star Wars movies (the first three, at least) were a triumph for nerds everywhere. What better way to celebrate than to dance?
The Muppets meet Mark Hamill
In January of 1980, the Star Wars cast joined Kermit & co. for a special episode of The Muppet Show. Luke Skywalker, C-3PO and R2-D2 blast through a wall in search of Chewbacca, who has been kidnapped. Then Luke's "cousin," Mark Hamill, shows up and things get as weird as you might expect. In pure Muppet fashion, the show closes with a big song-and-dance number:
Donny and Marie ruin everything
This it's-so-bad-it's-funny musical skit stars the Osmond siblings as Luke and Leia, respectively, with special appearances by Redd Foxx as "Obi Ben-Oki-Fenoki," Kris Kristofferson as Han Solo and Paul Lynde as Grand Moff Tarkin. Thankfully, no CGI means no Jar-Jar Binks; however, Donny's chest hair is almost as distracting. *insert laugh track here*
The Tokyo Dance Trooper
This is why TK-421 wasn't at his post. I can only assume this sort of thing happens all the time in downtown Tokyo.
Yoda busts a move
Not to be outdone by a clone, Jedi master Yoda shows some troopers how it's done. Believe it or not, this clip was animated by Industrial Light & Magic, and was an Easter Egg on the Episode III DVD. When 900 years old you reach, dance as good you will not.
Dance-Off with the Star Wars Stars
Whoever came up with the idea for Disney World's "Dance-Off with the Star Wars Stars" deserves a lifetime supply of churros. The dance competition, a highlight of the theme park's annual Star Wars Weekends, is always fun to watch. Luckily for those of us who don't live in Florida, someone has recorded the shows and posted them to YouTube. In 2007, the participants danced to some "classics" of the 1970s:
Here's 2008's showdown, a celebration of the dances of the 1980s. The entrance of Group #3 into the fray cracks me up every time.
And here's this year's competition, dedicated to (you guessed it) the 1990s:
Joey Fatone is a huge nerd
In April of 2007, former *NSYNC-er Joey Fatone brought this geeky dance to the hallowed halls of ABC's "Dancing With the Stars." His partner and coach, wearing the slave-Leia getup, is Kym Johnson. Unfortunately, they didn't let R2-D2 participate in the dance, but at least he was there for the practice.
A stormtrooper dances to Britney Spears
People just love to see these white boys dance, it seems. This is a pretty awesome music video parody, but to appreciate fully, you have to listen to a Britney Spears song in its entirety. So, take your hand off the mute button and watch at your own risk.
Darth strips it down
Someone alert the Team America guys--they no longer have the market cornered on sexually suggestive puppets. My little brain can't fathom what would inspire someone to make a stripper Darth Vader puppet, but I think the world is consequently a better place.
Do you get a weird kind of buzz from scratching off the silver foil coating on instant lotto tickets? Do you like watching movies? Then Pop Chart Lab has something for you. The company is set to release a 100 Essential Films Scratch-Off Chart, an 18-inch by 24-inch wall hanging that lets you keep track of which classic films you’ve seen and which are still in the queue.
The curated films are arranged in chronological order, from the works of Buster Keaton all the way to 2017’s Get Out. The silver foil obscures a portion of the artwork, which reveals more iconography from the movie when etched away with a coin. The $35 poster is due to begin shipping in September; you can purchase your copy now.
On the surface, Greg Mottola’s Superbad is the ultimate bromance: it tells the simple story of three dorky high school seniors (Michael Cera, Jonah Hill, and Christopher Mintz-Plasse) on a quest to bring alcohol to a party, just to impress some pretty girls. But beneath the dick jokes and teenage hormones, it’s about the anxiety of leaving for college and growing apart, emotions that producer Judd Apatow and writers Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg channeled into the hit comedy. On the 10th anniversary of its release, the film still holds up and its themes still ring true. Here are 11 things you might not know about the already-classic coming-of-age flick.
1. SETH ROGEN AND EVAN GOLDBERG WROTE THE FILM WHEN THEY WERE TEENAGERS.
It’s no secret that Seth Rogen wrote Jonah Hill’s character as an exaggerated version of his younger self. In an interview with Indie London, Rogen disclosed just how far back the story goes: “Evan Goldberg [and I] started writing it in high school when we were 14 years old and a lot of that stuff [in the movie] actually happened. The relationship between us is totally fabricated for the movie. We did split up eventually, but we don’t give a sh*t … we don’t love each other … The whole fake ID concept happened. Fogell is actually our other best friend and all the names in the movie are people who went to high school [with us].”
2. DIRECTOR GREG MOTTOLA LET THE CAMERA RUN FOR HOURS, EVEN IN BETWEEN TAKES.
When you’ve got Jonah Hill, Michael Cera, and Christopher Mintz-Plasse in an Apatow movie, you know you’ve got to let them play. Which is exactly what Greg Mottola did. “We shot high def, which was the greatest thing ever,” Jonah Hill told About.com. “I literally thought it was the greatest thing. You could just shoot all day. It was so awesome. Like any idea, anything you wanted to try, it wasn’t a waste of money or like time to shoot it. Even if it was crazy like so much stuff in the movie. And I think Greg took a lot of stuff that were like in-between takes and stuff or like reactions or things of us hanging out because they could just keep shooting what they could use in the movie."
3. EVAN GOLDBERG’S BROTHER DREW THE PENISES YOU SEE IN THE FILM.
While only a few censor-friendly organs were shown in a scene in which Seth (Hill) explains to Evan (Cera) his childhood fascination with drawing penises, Evan Goldberg’s brother David actually drew more than 1,000 options from which to choose. “They were hilarious," Hill told About.com. "I think as much credit goes to [David] for how he executed. It’s so funny that he’s a lawyer.” As for the idea to put the joke in the movie in the first place, Rogen swears that that part is not autobigraphical. “That came from nowhere," says Rogen. "I don’t know what it is. I wrote that.”
Superfans of the movie (who don’t already know this) can actually purchase the penis illustrations as movie memorabilia. It exists as a book.
4. PRODUCER JUDD APATOW TAPPED INTO SETH AND EVAN’S FRIENDSHIP TO ADD DRAMA TO THE PLOT.
Rogen and Goldberg grew up together, though they didn’t experience any separation anxiety when they went their separate ways for college. However, for the sake of storytelling, Apatow decided to ramp up the tension. “Maybe Judd got the idea kind of because I was at McGill University in Montreal, Seth was here, and we were growing apart," Goldberg told Reelz. "When in reality I’d be like, ‘All right, see ya later’ and then wouldn’t see Seth for a year and I’d be like, ‘What’s up?’ If [Seth] was like, ‘Yo, I can’t see you for 10 years, but then after that let’s go get a beer,’ I’d be like, ‘Okay.’ With Judd, the idea was developed and he had the idea about college the next year.”
5. MCLOVIN’S MOM HAD TO BE ON SET FOR HIS SEX SCENE.
Talk about awkward! Christopher Mintz-Plasse was only 17 years old when he shot the film, which required him to have parental supervision during his love scene with Nicola (Aviva Baumann). “It was real awkward but it worked out OK because when I watched the movie with her the sex scene wasn't awkward because she'd been right there when it happened," Mintz-Plasse told The Guardian. "Afterwards we didn't talk about it; we still don't speak about that moment.”
6. ACCORDING TO MICHAEL CERA AND JONAH HILL, THE REAL FOGELL IS MORE LIKE THE EVAN OF THE GROUP.
“It was more like Seth and Fogell making fun of Evan," Hill told Rotten Tomatoes. "Which Evan refuses to admit. But you could tell right away that that was the circumstance. When Evan showed him the movie, they were watching it and like 20 minutes into it or something, Fogell just went, ‘F*ck you dude.’”
However, Michael Cera’s bizarre story about the real Sam Fogell showed inklings of McLovin. “We've heard an awesome story where [Fogell] ... was gonna kill somebody one night,” said Cera. “He got in a bar fight and he went home basically to grab his sword, and he was looking for the guy.”
7. MICHAEL CERA SPENT AN HOUR IMPROVISING DANCE MOVES, WHICH IS WHAT YOU SEE IN THE OPENING CREDITS.
“It was Evan’s idea. For the DVD menu,” Michael Cera told Collider. “If it’s like a Blu-ray disc, they can have menus that long. It would be an hour of me dancing without looping. So the people would be like, ‘Oh, how long does this go on for?’ They would wait for it to loop and it never would.” It wasn’t until post-production when they had the idea to add the footage to the opening credits. “I think it was an editor’s assistant [who] made that intro of me dancing with like a silhouette,” Cera continued. “Then they recorded Jonah dancing because they liked it and decided to use it at the beginning of the movie.”
8. JASON SEGEL READ FOR THE PART OF EVAN.
“The first time I read the script was when we were doing Undeclared and we did a table read and we did it with Jason Segel and Seth reading the leads,” Apatow shares in the film’s DVD commentary. “It went well. It had a lot of heart at that period.” Added Rogen: “It took years to get the dick-to-heart ratio.” Eventually, the actors aged out of the roles, including Freaks and Geeks alum Martin Starr, who read Fogell's part.
9. SETH ROGEN’S ASSISTANT, MATTHEW BASS, PLAYS THE VAGTASTIC VOYAGER.
When Evan recounts his wild night out to Becca, the film cuts to the trio watching X-rated clips of the Vagtastic Voyager. As it turns out, he’s actually Matt Bass, an actor who was also formerly Rogen’s assistant. In the film’s DVD commentary, Goldberg calls Bass "the greatest Canadian to ever live.”
10. CHRISTOPHER MINTZ-PLASSE’S FIRST SCENE EVER—IN HIS ENTIRE ACTING CAREER—WAS HIS CHARACTER’S INTRO IN HOME ECONOMICS CLASS.
While discussing the scene in the DVD commentary, Mintz-Plasse admitted to being completely terrified filming his first professional movie ever. However, Goldberg reassured Mintz-Plasse, saying, “We read so many non-actors, so many people who had never done anything professionally before, and none of them could hide their fear. That’s why none of them got the job.”
11. JAY BARUCHEL IS RESPONSIBLE FOR GETTING MICHAEL CERA HIS SUPERBAD AUDITION.
“[Jay and I] were working on Fanboys and I said, ‘I think you might like Superbad,’ and literally the first thing he said is, ‘You gotta have Michael Cera come in. He’s f*cking amazing, that guy,” Rogen recalls in the DVD commentary. “I was like, ‘Who the f*ck is that?’” That recommendation led to Michael Cera’s mom getting a hold of the script, which she ended up pushing Michael to consider. Be sure to thank Jay and Michael’s mom for making Superbad the classic that it is.