DID YOU READ

15 Little-Known Facts About The Nutty Professor

THE NUTTY PROFESSOR, Jada Pinkett, Eddie Murphy, 1996, (c)Universal Pictures/courtesy Everett Collec

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Laugh your way through Eddie Murphy’s 1996 Academy Award-winning (see, you’re learning things already!) comedy with these 15 little-known facts.

1. The film is based on the 1963 Jerry Lewis comedy of the same name.

The Jekyll and Hyde-like storylines are mostly the same in both films, as is the name of the protagonist’s alter ego (Buddy Love). However, while Eddie Murphy’s Sherman Klump wants to lose weight, Jerry Lewis’ character wants to bulk up to become a jock.


2. The weight loss storyline was inspired by daytime television.

Murphy allegedly came up with the weight loss theme of the movie while watching a daytime chat show’s segment on the topic.


3. Lewis served as executive producer on the 1996 version of The Nutty Professor.

He also executive produced its sequel, 2000’s The Nutty Professor 2: The Klumps, and would go on to produce and star in a computer-animated sequel to his original film—also called The Nutty Professor—in 2008.


4. But it turns out Lewis isn’t really a fan of Murphy’s version.

He’s quoted as saying, “I have such respect for Eddie, but I should not have done it. What I did was perfect the first time around, and all you’re going to do is diminish that perfection by letting someone else do it.”


5. Lewis allegedly turned down a cameo in the movie.

His reason: He thought the script had too many fart jokes.


6. The Nutty Professor was also produced by business mogul and Def Jam Recordings co-founder Russell Simmons.

Simmons loved Lewis’ version and always wanted to do an updated version. In fact, Lewis’ version inspired Simmons’ comedy series Def Comedy Jam, which is referenced in the remake.


7. Director Tom Shayac wasn’t Murphy’s original choice…

Murphy and the producers wanted famed director John Landis to direct The Nutty Professor. Landis had worked previously with Murphy on the films Trading Places, Coming to America, and Beverly Hills Cop III.


8. … but he seemed to have the magic touch.

The Nutty Professor was the second in a string of four consecutive comedies directed by Shadyac to gross more than $100 million worldwide. The other films were Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, Liar Liar, and Patch Adams.

9. Eddie Murphy plays a total of seven characters in the film.

He plays every member of the Klump family except for Ernie Klump Jr., the nephew who is played by actor Jamal Mixon, as well as the Richard Simmons lookalike, Lance Perkins.


10. There’s a story behind Dave Chappelle’s character’s name.

The rude comic played by Chappelle is named Reggie Warrington after director Reginald Hudlin and his brother Warrington. Eddie Murphy allegedly had a falling out with the brothers after appearing in 1992’s Boomerang, which Reginald directed and Warrington produced.


11. Jada Pinkett Smith chose The Nutty Professor over Independence Day.

Pinkett Smith, who plays Carla Purty, wasn’t able to star in Independence Day with her then-boyfriend (and now-husband) Will Smith because she had already accepted her role in The Nutty Professor.


12. A lot of work went into those crazy dinner scenes.

To make the Klump family dinner table scenes work seamlessly, Murphy performed each role one at a time. While filming each new character, he would use an earpiece that played audio of himself as the Klump family members he’d already shot. He repeated this process for days until the entire scene was complete with each family member’s dialogue.


13. Grandma Klump is based on the pioneering comedian Moms Mabley.


14. The suit and practical effects that Eddie Murphy had to wear were created by Academy Award-winning effects designer Rick Baker.

Baker made an entire body cast of Murphy in order to create the lightweight, hand-carved eurothane foam and spandex suit that would make the actor appear 450 lbs. Other parts of the suit were filled with cellulose and water to make it move believably. It took three hours to apply the makeup each day for the entire 70-day shoot. Baker and his team would go on to win the Academy Award for Best Makeup for The Nutty Professor.


15. Eddie Murphy was allegedly paid $12 million to star in The Nutty Professor.

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New Nasty

Whips, Chains and Hand Sanitizer

Turn On The Full Season Of Neurotica At IFC's Comedy Crib

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Jenny Jaffe has a lot going on: She’s writing for Disney’s upcoming Big Hero 6: The Series, developing comedy projects with pals at Devastator Press, and she’s straddling the line between S&M and OCD as the creator and star of the sexyish new series Neurotica, which has just made its debut on IFC’s Comedy Crib. Jenny gave us some extremely intimate insight into what makes Neurotica (safely) sizzle…

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

Jenny: Neurotica is about a plucky Dominatrix with OCD trying to save her small-town dungeon.

IFC: How would you describe Neurotica to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Jenny: Neurotica is about a plucky Dominatrix with OCD trying to save her small-town dungeon. You’re great. We should get coffee sometime. I’m not just saying that. I know other people just say that sometimes but I really feel like we’re going to be friends, you know? Here, what’s your number, I’ll call you so you can have my number!

IFC: What’s your comedy origin story?

Jenny: Since I was a kid I’ve dealt with severe OCD and anxiety. Comedy has always been one of the ways I’ve dealt with that. I honestly just want to help make people feel happy for a few minutes at a time.

IFC: What was the genesis of Neurotica?

Jenny: I’m pretty sure it was a title-first situation. I was coming up with ideas to pitch to a production company a million years ago (this isn’t hyperbole; I am VERY old) and just wrote down “Neurotica”; then it just sort of appeared fully formed. “Neurotica? Oh it’s an over-the-top romantic comedy about a Dominatrix with OCD, of course.” And that just happened to hit the buttons of everything I’m fascinated by.

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IFC: How would you describe Ivy?

Jenny: Ivy is everything I love in a comedy character – she’s tenacious, she’s confident, she’s sweet, she’s a big wonderful weirdo.

IFC: How would Ivy’s clientele describe her?

Jenny:  Open-minded, caring, excellent aim.

IFC: Why don’t more small towns have local dungeons?

Jenny: How do you know they don’t?

IFC: What are the pros and cons of joining a chain mega dungeon?

Jenny: You can use any of their locations but you’ll always forget you have a membership and in a year you’ll be like “jeez why won’t they let me just cancel?”

IFC: Mouths are gross! Why is that?

Jenny: If you had never seen a mouth before and I was like “it’s a wet flesh cave with sharp parts that lives in your face”, it would sound like Cronenberg-ian body horror. All body parts are horrifying. I’m kind of rooting for the singularity, I’d feel way better if I was just a consciousness in a cloud.

See the whole season of Neurotica right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

The-Craft

The ’90s Are Back

The '90s live again during IFC's weekend marathon.

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Photo Credit: Everett Digital, Columbia Pictures

We know what you’re thinking: “Why on Earth would anyone want to reanimate the decade that gave us Haddaway, Los Del Rio, and Smash Mouth, not to mention Crystal Pepsi?”

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Thoughts like those are normal. After all, we tend to remember lasting psychological trauma more vividly than fleeting joy. But if you dig deep, you’ll rediscover that the ’90s gave us so much to fondly revisit. Consider the four pillars of true ’90s culture.

Boy Bands

We all pretended to hate them, but watch us come alive at a karaoke bar when “I Want It That Way” comes on. Arguably more influential than Brit Pop and Grunge put together, because hello – Justin Timberlake. He’s a legitimate cultural gem.

Man-Child Movies

Adam Sandler is just behind The Simpsons in terms of his influence on humor. Somehow his man-child schtick didn’t get old until the aughts, and his success in that arena ushered in a wave of other man-child movies from fellow ’90s comedians. RIP Chris Farley (and WTF Rob Schneider).

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Teen Angst

In horror, dramas, comedies, and everything in between: Troubled teens! Getting into trouble! Who couldn’t relate to their First World problems, plaid flannels, and lose grasp of the internet?

Mainstream Nihilism

From the Coen Bros to Fincher to Tarantino, filmmakers on the verge of explosive popularity seemed interested in one thing: mind f*cking their audiences by putting characters in situations (and plot lines) beyond anyone’s control.

Feeling better about that walk down memory lane? Good. Enjoy the revival.

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And revisit some important ’90s classics all this weekend during IFC’s ’90s Marathon. Check out the full schedule here.

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Get Physical

DVDs are the new Vinyl

Portlandia Season 7 Now Available On Disc.

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In this crazy digital age, sometimes all we really want is to reach out and touch something. Maybe that’s why so many of us are still gung-ho about owning stuff on DVD. It’s tangible. It’s real. It’s tech from a bygone era that still feels relevant, yet also kitschy and retro. It’s basically vinyl for people born after 1990.

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Inevitably we all have that friend whose love of the disc is so absolutely repellent that he makes the technology less appealing. “The resolution, man. The colors. You can’t get latitude like that on a download.” Go to hell, Tim.

Yes, Tim sucks, and you don’t want to be like Tim, but maybe he’s onto something and DVD is still the future. Here are some benefits that go beyond touch.

It’s Decor and Decorum

With DVDs and a handsome bookshelf you can show off your great taste in film and television without showing off your search history. Good for first dates, dinner parties, family reunions, etc.

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Forget Public Wifi

Warm up that optical drive. No more awkwardly streaming episodes on shady free wifi!

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Inter-not

Internet service goes down. It happens all the time. It could happen right now. Then what? Without a DVD on hand you’ll be forced to make eye contact with your friends and family. Or worse – conversation.

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Self Defense

You can’t throw a download like a ninja star. Think about it.

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If you’d like to experience the benefits DVD ownership yourself, Portlandia Season 7 is now available on DVD and Blue-Ray.