DID YOU READ

15 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Hot Fuzz

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Even if you’re a huge fan of Simon Pegg and Nick Frost’s work with director Edgar Wright, you may not know these fun nuggets about their amazing buddy-cop comedy.

1. Ice cream inspired the film.

Hot Fuzz is the second chapter in the so-called “Cornetto Trilogy,” directed by Wright and named after the popular ice cream cone snack. The trilogy also features the director’s films Shaun of the Dead and The World’s End. Whereas Shaun represents the red strawberry flavored Cornetto and The World’s End is the green mint flavor, Hot Fuzz is the blue original flavor.


2. Simon Pegg’s character borrowed his name from a crew member.

Pegg’s character, Nicholas Angel, was named after the film’s music supervisor Nick Angel, who also worked on Shaun of the Dead and The World’s End.


3. Keep your eyes open for uncredited cameos.

There are plenty to spot. Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson appears as the deranged Santa Claus who stabs Nicholas Angel in the opening montage. Cate Blanchett plays Angel’s jilted ex-girlfriend Janine. Attack the Block director Joe Cornish plays her new boyfriend, Bob. Martin Freeman, Steve Coogan, and Bill Nighy (who also appeared in Shaun of the Dead) play the police inspectors who transfer Angel out of London, and Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy director Garth Jennings plays a crack addict Angel busts in the opening montage.


4. Director Edgar Wright went home to shoot Hot Fuzz.

The film was shot in his hometown of Wells in Somerset.


5. But something is missing from the film’s version of Wells.

The Wells Cathedral—a 500-year-old medieval church at the center of the city—had to be digitally erased from shots because Wright wanted Sandford to technically be a village (an English settlement without a cathedral) and not a city (an English settlement based around a cathedral).


6. Wright was very familiar with the film’s supermarket.

As a teenager, Wright worked at the actual Somerfield that appears in the movie, and Wright’s real-life boss at the supermarket inspired the character of Simon Skinner.


7. Wright and Pegg put their moms to work.

Wright’s and Pegg’s mothers and Wright’s high school drama teacher play the befuddled judges for the village-of-the-year contest at the end of the film.


8. A great prop from Shaun of the Dead makes a cameo of its own.

The cricket bat from Shaun of the Dead is hidden in the background of the scene where Edward Woodward’s character is introduced to Nicholas Angel while doing surveillance of Sandford on a series of CCTV monitors.

9. There’s one other subtle Shaun cameo.

When Danny tosses a DVD copy of Supercop into a bin in the supermarket, a DVD copy of Shaun of the Dead can be seen next to it, but the cover uses the film’s Spanish and Portuguese title: Zombies Party.


10. The DVD collection in the film had a back story.

Danny Butterman’s massive DVD collection—including his prized copies of Point Break and Bad Boys II—is actually the DVD collections of Edgar Wright, his brother Oscar Wright, and fellow director Joe Cornish combined.


11. Those DVD clips took some work.

Every clip of Point Break and Bad Boys II used in Hot Fuzz had to be cleared by stars Keanu Reeves, Patrick Swayze, Martin Lawrence, and Will Smith … as well as their stunt doubles.


12. You can really visit the Crown Pub.

The scenes were shot in the Royal Standard in Beaconsfield.


13. There’s a trick for telling the twins apart.

The way to distinguish between the twin characters played by actor Bill Bailey involves looking at the books they read. One brother reads books by writer Iain Banks, while the other reads books by Banks’ very similar sci-fi nom de plume, Iain M. Banks.


14. Danny’s bloody flipbook illustrations have a pedigree.

They were drawn by Edgar Wright’s brother Oscar, a comic book artist.


15. Wright found a spot for his favorite band.

The music that plays over all of the paperwork processing scenes—which Wright humorously had edited together to seem like action scenes—is a song called “Here Come the Fuzz” by the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, Wright’s favorite band.

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Hard Out

Comedy From The Closet

Janice and Jeffrey Available Now On IFC's Comedy Crib

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She’s been referred to as “the love child of Amy Sedaris and Tracy Ullman,” and he’s a self-described “Italian who knows how to cook a great spaghetti alla carbonara.” They’re Mollie Merkel and Matteo Lane, prolific indie comedians who blended their robust creative juices to bring us the new Comedy Crib series Janice and Jeffrey. Mollie and Matteo took time to answer our probing questions about their series and themselves. Here’s a taste.

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IFC: How would you describe Janice and Jeffrey to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?

Mollie & Matteo: Janice and Jeffrey is about a married couple experiencing intimacy issues but who don’t have a clue it’s because they are gay. Their oblivion makes them even more endearing.  Their total lack of awareness provides for a buffet of comedy.

IFC: What’s your origin story? How did you two people meet and how long have you been working together?

Mollie: We met at a dive bar in Wrigley Field Chicago. It was a show called Entertaining Julie… It was a cool variety scene with lots of talented people. I was doing Janice one night and Matteo was doing an impression of Liza Minnelli. We sort of just fell in love with each other’s… ACT! Matteo made the first move and told me how much he loved Janice and I drove home feeling like I just met someone really special.

IFC: How would Janice describe Jeffrey?

Mollie: “He can paint, cook homemade Bolognese, and sing Opera. Not to mention he has a great body. He makes me feel empowered and free. He doesn’t suffocate me with attention so our love has room to breath.”

IFC: How would Jeffrey describe Janice?

Matteo: “Like a Ford. Built to last.”

IFC: Why do you think the world is ready for this series?

Mollie & Matteo: Our current political world is mirroring and reflecting this belief that homosexuality is wrong. So what better time for satire. Everyone is so pro gay and equal rights, which is of course what we want, too. But no one is looking at middle America and people actually in the closet. No one is saying, hey this is really painful and tragic, and sitting with that. Having compassion but providing the desperate relief of laughter…This seemed like the healthiest, best way to “fight” the gay rights “fight”.

IFC: Hummus is hilarious. Why is it so funny?

Mollie: It just seems like something people take really seriously, which is funny to me. I started to see it in a lot of lesbians’ refrigerators at a time. It’s like observing a lesbian in a comfortable shoe. It’s a language we speak. Pass the Hummus. Turn on the Indigo Girls would ya?

See the whole season of Janice and Jeffrey right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

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Die Hard Dads

Inspiration For Die Hard Dads

Die Hard is on IFC all Father's Day Long

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Photo Credit: Everett Collection, GIPHY

Yippee ki-yay, everybody! It’s time to celebrate the those most literal of mother-effers: dads!

And just in case the title of this post left anything to the imagination, IFC is giving dads balls-to-the-wall ’80s treatment with a glorious marathon of action trailblazer Die Hard.

There are so many things we could say about Die Hard. We could talk about how it was comedian Bruce Willis’s first foray into action flicks, or Alan Rickman’s big screen debut. But dads don’t give a sh!t about that stuff.

No, dads just want to fantasize that they could be deathproof quip factory John McClane in their own mundane lives. So while you celebrate the fathers in your life, consider how John McClane would respond to these traditional “dad” moments…

Wedding Toasts

Dads always struggle to find the right words of welcome to extend to new family. John McClane, on the other hand, is the master of inclusivity.
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Using Public Restrooms

While nine out of ten dads would rather die than use a disgusting public bathroom, McClane isn’t bothered one bit. So long as he can fit a bloody foot in the sink, he’s G2G.
Die Hard restroom

Awkward Dancing

Because every dad needs a signature move.
Die Hard dance

Writing Thank You Notes

It can be hard for dads to express gratitude. Not only can McClane articulate his thanks, he makes it feel personal.
Die Hard thank you

Valentine’s Day

How would John McClane say “I heart you” in a way that ain’t cliche? The image speaks for itself.
Die Hard valentines

Shopping

The only thing most dads hate more than shopping is fielding eleventh-hour phone calls with additional items for the list. But does McClane throw a typical man-tantrum? Nope. He finds the words to express his feelings like a goddam adult.
Die Hard thank you

Last Minute Errands

John McClane knows when a fight isn’t worth fighting.
Die Hard errands

Sneaking Out Of The Office Early

What is this, high school? Make a real exit, dads.
Die Hard office

Think you or your dad could stand to be more like Bruce? Role model fodder abounds in the Die Hard marathon all Father’s Day long on IFC.

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Founding Farters

Know Your Nerd History

Revenge of the Nerds is on IFC.

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Photo Credit: Everett Collection, GIFs via Giphy

That we live in the heyday of nerds is no hot secret. Scientists are celebrities, musicians are robots and late night hosts can recite every word of the Silmarillion. It’s too easy to think that it’s always been this way. But the truth is we owe much to our nerd forebearers who toiled through the jock-filled ’80s so that we might take over the world.

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Our humble beginnings are perhaps best captured in iconic ’80s romp Revenge of the Nerds. Like the founding fathers of our Country, the titular nerds rose above their circumstances to culturally pave the way for every Colbert and deGrasse Tyson that we know and love today.

To make sure you’re in the know about our very important cultural roots, here’s a quick download of the vengeful nerds without whom our shameful stereotypes might never have evolved.

Lewis Skolnick

The George Washington of nerds whose unflappable optimism – even in the face of humiliating self-awareness – basically gave birth to the Geek Pride movement.

Gilbert Lowe

OK, this guy is wet blanket, but an important wet blanket. Think Aaron Burr to Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton. His glass-mostly-empty attitude is a galvanizing force for Lewis. Who knows if Lewis could have kept up his optimism without Lowe’s Debbie-Downer outlook?

Arnold Poindexter

A music nerd who, after a soft start (inside joke, you’ll get it later), came out of his shell and let his passion lead instead of his anxiety. If you played an instrument (specifically, electric violin), and you were a nerd, this was your patron saint.

Booger

A sex-loving, blunt-smoking, nose-picking guitar hero. If you don’t think he sounds like a classic nerd, you’re absolutely right. And that’s the whole point. Along with Lamar, he simultaneously expanded the definition of nerd and gave pre-existing nerds a twisted sort of cred by association.

Lamar Latrell

Black, gay, and a crazy good breakdancer. In other words, a total groundbreaker. He proved to the world that nerds don’t have a single mold, but are simply outcasts waiting for their moment.

Ogre

Exceedingly stupid, this dumbass was monumental because he (in a sequel) leaves the jocks to become a nerd. Totally unheard of back then. Now all jocks are basically nerds.

Well, there they are. Never forget that we stand on their shoulders.

Revenge of the Nerds is on IFC all month long.

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