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DID YOU READ

15 Things We Bet You Didn’t Know About The Invention of Lying

THE INVENTION OF LYING, from left: Louis C.K., Ricky Gervais, Jennifer Garner, 2009. Ph: Sam Urdank/

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Ricky Gervais cannot tell a lie, or can he? Here are some facts about his 2009 comedy The Invention of Lying.

1. THE IDEA FOR THE MOVIE BEGAN AS A SHORT SKIT.

Screenwriter Matt Robinson’s original idea for a feature film grew from a skit he wrote about two people on a date who don’t have the ability to lie. He later expanded on the idea for more skits with the same premise and then adapted them it into a full film script.


2. ROBINSON SENT THE SCRIPT TO GERVAIS ON A WHIM.

Robinson and producer Lynda Obst sent Gervais the script out of the blue in the hopes that it would spark his interest. Gervais loved it and eventually flew Robinson to London to retool the script and make the movie.


3. SPIKE JONZE AND MICHEL GONDRY WERE ON A SHORTLIST OF DIRECTORS.

Gervais and Robinson drew up a list of dream directors for the film, including Jonze (Adaptation., Being John Malkovich) and Gondry (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind). Ultimately, they decided to direct it themselves.


4. IT’S GERVAIS’S FEATURE FILM DIRECTORIAL DEBUT.

Gervais had previously directed episodes of the UK version of The Office and his show Extras before jumping to feature films with The Invention of Lying.


5. THE SCRIPT WAS ON 2007’s BLACK LIST.

Matt Robinson’s screenplay, which was titled This Side of Truth at the time, was included in the year’s official list of the “most liked” un-produced scripts in Hollywood [PDF].


6. ROBINSON EVENTUALLY BECAME A PODCASTER.

The Invention of Lying is Robinson’s only feature film directorial effort to date. He is now the co-host of a podcast called Get Up On This, wherein he and a co-host predict pop culture trends before they happen.


7. THE MOVIE INCLUDES A SLY NOD TO WOODY ALLEN.

The movie’s credits feature white text in the Windsor font on a black background—a style used in nearly all of Allen’s films.


8. IT’S FILLED WITH A-LIST CAMEOS.

Philip Seymour Hoffman plays the bartender, Edward Norton plays the highway patrolman, Jason Bateman plays the doctor, and Christopher Guest plays one of the movie lecturers. Also, Stephen Merchant, the co-creator of The Office, plays the rich man at the door, and co-director Matt Robinson cameos as the TV interviewer and the nerdy guy in glasses in the crowd outside Mark’s (Gervais) apartment.


9. THE ORIGINAL OPENING WAS CUT.

In the wordless sequence, narrated by Patrick Stewart, Mark’s caveman ancestor learns how to lie and then imagines what could have been if it had never happened.


10. AFTER CASTING LOUIS C.K. IN THIS FILM, GERVAIS WOULD APPEAR ON C.K.’S SHOW.

Gervais played the doctor in two episodes of Louie’s first season.


11. THEY SHOT THE MOVIE IN NEW ENGLAND.

The unnamed town in the movie is primarily Lowell, Massachusetts.


12. JENNIFER GARNER AND RICKY GERVAIS HAD WORKED TOGETHER BEFORE.

Garner was cast because Gervais previously appeared on Alias.


13. PIZZA HUT DIDN’T WANT TO BE IN THE MOVIE.

The pizza chain initially tried to bar the filmmakers from including its logo on Mark’s new Ten Commandments, but the filmmakers were able to include it due to satire laws.


14. THE CHAPEL IN THE FINAL SCENE IS A LANDMARK IN SUDBURY, MASSACHUSETTS.

The Martha Mary Chapel was built by car magnate Henry Ford.


15. A PROMO CONTEST FOR THE FILM ASKED PEOPLE TO SUBMIT “HONEST” MOVIE POSTERS.

Gervais selected a submission from the contest mocking the Twilight saga as the winner.

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Rev Up

Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Give Back

Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

It’s the final countdown to Christmas and thanks to IFC’s movie marathon all Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, you can revel in classic ’80s films AND find inspiration for your last-minute gifts. Here are our recommendations, if you need a head start:

Musical Instrument

Great analog entertainment substitute when you refuse to give your kid the Nintendo Switch they’ve been drooling over.

Breakfast In Bed

Any significant other or child would appreciate these Uncle Buck-approved flapjacks. Just make sure you’re not stuck on clean up duty.

Cocktail Supplies

You’ll need them to get through the holidays.

Dance Lessons

So you can learn to shake-shake-shake (unless you know ghosts willing to lend a hand).

Comfy Clothes

With all the holiday meals, there may be some…embigenning.



Get even more great inspiration all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC, and remember…

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A-O Rewind

Celebrating Portlandia One Sketch at a Time

The final season of Portlandia approaches.

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GIFs via Giphy

Most people measure time in minutes, hours, days, years…At IFC, we measure it in sketches. And nothing takes us way (waaaaaay) back like Portlandia sketches. Yes, there’s a Portlandia milepost from every season that changed the way we think, behave, and pickle things. In honor of Portlandia’s 8th and final season, Subaru presents a few of our favorites.

via GIPHY

Put A Bird On It

Portlandia enters the pop-culture lexicon and inspires us to put birds on literally everything.

Colin the Chicken

Who’s your chicken, really? Behold the emerging locavore trend captured perfectly to the nth degree.

Dream Of The ’90s

This treatise on Portland made it clear that “the dream” was alive and well.

No You Go

We Americans spend most of our lives in cars. Fortunately, there’s a Portlandia sketch for every automotive situation.

A-O River!

We learned all our outdoor survival skills from Kath and Dave.

One More Episode

The true birth of binge watching, pre-Netflix. And what you’ll do once Season 8 premieres.

Catch up on Portlandia’s best moments before the 8th season premieres January 18th on IFC.

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