DID YOU READ

15 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About From Dusk Till Dawn

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Before settling in for one hell of a night with Quentin Tarantino, George Clooney, and a bunch of vampires in Robert Rodriguez’s horror comedy, check out these fascinating facts about the making of the film.

1. EARL MCGRAW DIES, BUT LIVES ON ELSEWHERE

The character Sheriff Earl McGraw, played by Michael Parks, is killed in the film’s opening. But he was resurrected for Tarantino’s Kill Bill: Vol. 1 and Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez’s collaboration Planet Terror.


2. THE GECKO BROTHERS ENJOY SOME FAMILIAR BRANDS

The Big Kahuna Burgers they eat are from a restaurant featured in Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction, and the Chongo Beer in the bar is from Rodriguez’s Desperado.


3. IT’S FULL OF FAMILIAR FACES FOR RODRIGUEZ AND TARANTINO

Harvey Keitel appeared in Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction (and would lend his voice to an uncredited cameo in Inglourious Basterds). Danny Trejo has been in nine movies directed by Robert Rodriguez, while Cheech Marin has appeared in seven.


4. IT WAS TARANTINO’S FIRST PAID WRITING GIG

Tarantino wrote the script for $1,500.


5. TARANTINO’S INVOLVMENT PAID OFF DOWN THE LINE

Tarantino wrote the From Dusk Till Dawn script as a way to showcase the talents of a special effects company called KNB. In return, KNB agreed to provide the special effects for the “ear scene” in Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs free of charge.


6. CHEECH MARIN PLAYS THREE DIFFERENT CHARACTERS

The Mexican border guard, the strip club doorman, and the gangster Carlos.


7. IT’S GEORGE CLOONEY’S FIRST HOLLYWOOD FILM ROLE

Tarantino pitched Clooney on the film after directing him in ER.


8. JULIETTE LEWIS WAS CAST BECAUSE OF HER FRIENDSHIP WITH TARANTINO

She previously appeared in the film Natural Born Killers, whose original screenplay was written by Quentin Tarantino (his draft would eventually be heavily revised and he ultimately received a “Story By” credit), and Tarantino liked her so much that he suggested she play Kate, a role which he admittedly underwrote in the From Dusk Till Dawn screenplay.

9. THERE’S A GREAT HOMAGE TO RODRIGUEZ’S FAVORITE DIRECTOR

The character Scott Fuller wears a t-shirt that reads “Precinct 13,” a nod to the film Assault on Precinct 13, the second film by John Carpenter.


10. APOCALYPSE NOW INSPIRED THE STRIP CLUB

Rodriguez modeled the exterior of the Titty Twister on Kurtz’s compound.


11. SALMA HAYEK’S CHARACTER IS NAMED AFTER A MEXICAN HORROR MOVIE

Tarantino’s script originally called her character “Blonde Death,” but after Hayek (a brunette) was cast, Tarantino changed it to “Satanico Pandemonium”—a Mexican horror movie he remembered from his time working at a video store.


12. RODRIGUEZ AND TARANTINO CAST THEIR EXPLOITATION IDOLS

Both filmmakers are on-the-record fans of exploitation movies, and they peppered the movie with their favorites. Tom Savini, who plays Sex Machine, is the legendary stuntman and special effects creator behind movies like Dawn of the Dead; Tom Saxon, who plays FBI Agent Chase, is an actor who appeared in Enter the Dragon and other films; and Fred Williamson, who plays Frost, was in many popular Blaxploitation movies in the ‘70s and the original movie inspiration for Inglourious Basterds.


13. IT USED TO INCLUDE A FAMOUS TARANTINO SPEECH

The infamous Ezekiel 25:17 speech from Pulp Fiction was originally in Tarantino’s script for From Dusk Till Dawn. It was meant to be spoken by Harvey Keitel’s character as he fends off the vampires before being killed.


14. RODRIGUEZ PRE-EMPTED AN NC-17 RATING WITH GREEN BLOOD

The director knew that he had a big gory movie on his hands, so to guarantee the film wouldn’t get a dreaded NC-17 rating he made all of the vampire blood green instead of red.


15. THE FROM DUSK TILL DAWN STORY DIDN’T END HERE

It spawned two movie sequels and a TV series using the film’s mythology.

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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.
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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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