Saturday, January 25, 2014

So Money

An oral history of Swingers (Grantland).

Jon Favreau (Mike): When I set out to write Swingers, I didn’t know I was even writing a movie. My dad had given me a screenwriting program and I started the script just as an exercise to see if I could write a screenplay. Swingers is what came out.
Ron Livingston (Rob): Jon was really busted up over his breakup. That’s right about the age when your first long-term thing comes apart. Having your heart ripped out like that — that’s a lot different than the cheerleader who doesn’t like you back.
Favreau: I started writing, just drawing from the environment I was living in. I had characters loosely based on people I knew. None of the events were real; it was all a story that came out of my head without an outline.
Alex Désert (Charles): I like to say Swingers was us times 10. I wish I could be that cool.

Livingston: Vince and I, and a couple of other people — Alex Désert, Ahmed Ahmed, who’s in the movie — we started doing all of these staged readings for potential buyers of this script. They came in all shapes and sizes. Every three months or so, we’d get together in somebody’s living room and rehearse for a while and then go to some empty theater space and do it for some guy who had Saudi parking lot money. ...

Vaughn: The reading would always play phenomenally. We did this for over a year and would get huge laughs, great responses. But the business model was always a problem. You have a bunch of guys that don’t really mean anything to Hollywood. Jon had done more than the rest of us, but wasn’t a big enough name to open a movie. ...

Wurmfeld: Literally every single word that comes out of Vince’s mouth is on the page. That’s what totally blows me away about Jon’s writing — his ability to get someone’s voice, because I think that’s not an easy task. One might think that Vince is improvising, and certainly he can, but I just was amazed that all those jokes and stuff were actually on the page.

Livingston: He grabbed “You’re so money” from the Spike Lee–Michael Jordan commercials, where Spike Lee called Michael Jordan “Money,” you know, “Like the shoes, Money.” Nobody was really doing that, I think, other than just Spike Lee and Michael Jordan. So when the movie came out, that was still kind of a new thing.


James Hedman said...

Satire at its finest

Odoacer said...

I never pegged you as a Swingers fan. My friends and I used to quote it quite a bit when we hit the bars.

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