DID YOU READ

15 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About The Last Exorcism

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Savor every jump and scream a little more after knowing this 15 little-known facts about Daniel Stamm’s found footage frightfest.

1. The film’s evil demon is a henchman from Christian demon lore.

Abalam, the demon said to possess Nell in The Last Exorcism, is a minor figure from a Christian demonology text called The Lesser Key of Solomon. He is said to be the right-hand man (or demon, in this case) to a more powerful demon named Paimon. Most of the details about him were fictionalized in the film.


2. Director Daniel Stamm was chosen to head The Last Exorcism because of his film school thesis.

Stamm’s first film and AFI thesis, A Necessary Death, uses a similar found footage technique to tell the story of a filmmaker looking to document a suicidal individual for his own film school thesis.


3. The Last Exorcism was originally supposed to be co-directed by co-writers Huck Botko and Andrew Gurland.

The pair had to drop out because they were contractually obligated to write and direct a comedy called The Virginity Hit at the same time.


4. The film was originally titled Cotton after one of the main characters, Cotton Marcus.

The filmmakers decided to change the title to The Last Exorcism because they thought Cotton was too ambiguous and could confuse audiences.


5. Ashley Bell was the second actress to read for the role of Nell.

She got the part after she improvised an exorcism during her audition.


6. Patrick Fabian memorized an 8-minute sermon for his Cotton Marcus audition.

The filmmakers incorporated parts of the sermon in the final film.


7. The studio used Chatroulette to market the film.

Visitors to the webcam-based chat site were given a shock when, in a video planted by the studio, a woman unbuttoning her blouse transformed into a demon.


8. The filmmakers originally wanted to add fake credits to the end of their faux-documentary to make it seem like someone simply edited the found footage.

The idea was scrapped due to various credit stipulations from producers, actors, and directors guilds in Hollywood.

9. Nell’s Doc Martens weren’t in the script.

Nell was originally supposed to be barefoot throughout the entire movie, but the film’s insurance company wouldn’t put up the money to insure her feet, so the filmmakers gave her the boots instead.


10. Nell’s contorted back-bend (an image which ended up on the film’s theatrical poster) was not a CGI effect.

And it was added at the last minute. Director Daniel Stamm asked Ashley Bell what she could add to the scene to make it creepier and she showed him the flexible move, so he put it in the movie.


11. In fact, the film is almost entirely CGI-free.

CGI was only used to slightly enhance the bonfire at the end of the movie.


12. Nell’s vomit is made from a mixture of Gatorade, oatmeal, and Cheez-Its.

It was originally supposed to include chicken broth, but the recipe was changed because Bell is a vegetarian.


13. Ashley Bell’s father, famous voice-over artist Michael Bell, provided the voice for the devil.

Bell’s credits include voices from the Transformers cartoon, G.I. Joe, Chas Finster and Drew Pickles in Rugrats, and Handy, Grouchy, and Lazy Smurf from The Smurfs.


14. The filmmakers used Google Translate to create the Latin text in Cotton’s demonology book.

When no translation for certain words could be found, the English was simply left in.


15. The ending is inspired by John Carpenter’s The Thing.

As in The Thing, the filmmakers left the ending ambiguous and didn’t want to neatly wrap up each storyline.

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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.
Die Hard wedding

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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