Sunday, August 21, 2016

Spaceballs The Trivia

Spaceballs: The Trivia

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10.  Mel Brooks came up with the idea for this film when he discovered he had yet to spoof space movies, since he already "destroyed" the western films with Blazing Saddles (1974), made fun of the horror genre with Young Frankenstein (1974), and gave silent movies the ax with Silent Movie (1976).

9.  Mel Brooks trademark: [villain] President Skroob has a mustache.

8.  Cameo John Hurt: parodying his own role from Alien (1979), in the space diner scene.

7.  The alien that pops out of John Hurt's chest and starts singing "Hello my baby" and dancing with the hat and cane is a parody of Michigan J. Frog of the Looney Tunes. 

6.  Tim Russ played the Spaceball trooper in the "Comb the Desert" scene who says "We ain't found shit!" He later went on to play Tuvok in Star Trek: Voyager (1995). Star Trek (1966) is parodied in the film.

5.  President Skroob's name is an anagram of Mel Brooks, the man who plays him. 

4.  WILHELM SCREAM: When Barf holds up the curved tubes, deflecting the shots of four of the bad guys back at them, the fourth one screams a Wilhelm as he is shot in the rear.

3.  The box for Spaceballs: The Breakfast Cereal says it contains "100% sugar" 

2.  When Dark Helmet asks how many assholes they have on-board, only one person on the bridge doesn't stand and raise his hand.

1.  When President Skroob meets the Gallup twins, he tells them to "chew their gum." This is a reference to "Doublemint" commercials featuring twins. 
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EXTRAS

When coming up with a new title for the film, replacing the original title "Planet Moron", when they heard about the British science fiction spoof Morons from Outer Space (1985). Mel Brooks, Ronny Graham and Thomas Meehan went through all the letters of the alphabet, to search for a word to add to "Space", which Thomas Meehan suggested. But, Mel Brooks spilled a drink and shouted "Balls!" and Ronnie Graham said "Spaceballs!" which became the film's new and final title and they came up with the idea that the villains The Spaceballs, would wear ball shaped helmets.

In a 2013 television interview (shorty before receiving the AFI Lifetime Achievement Award) Mel Brooks stated that he personally obtained George Lucas' full permission to parody any and all things Star Wars related. But, on one condition: that absolutely no merchandise of any kind be produced from the film. This is the reason why all Yogurt and the dinks do is merchandising (it's also why none of the merchandise seen in the film was ever mass produced or publicly sold in any way). 

"The Schwartz" is more than just a replacement (and near rhyming) title for The Force. Schwartz is the name of Mel's legal representative for the film. This gave the phrase "May the Schwartz be with you" far more significance to the entire production than just a catchphrase for the film itself.

 In the DVD commentary, Mel Brooks talks about how difficult it was playing the Yogurt character. The gold-colored makeup gave him a terrible rash on his face and neck (necessitating the shooting of all of Yogurt's scenes out of sequence), also his knees were hurting constantly since he had to walk around on his knees even though he was wearing kneepads. Brooks also goes on to say that in spite of the difficulties, he enjoyed playing as Yogurt tremendously and that it was all worth it.

According to Mel Brooks, George Lucas loved the film so much, and wrote him a letter after its premiere saying he thought he was going to bust something from laughing so hard. Lucas also told Brooks had he not chosen to parody Star Wars, Spaceballs would have succeeded as a great adventure film. Brooks said he was extremely flattered by Lucas's compliments and support.

In the scene where Dark Helmet is dressed in safari clothes searching for Lone Starr and the others with binoculars, he is on top of a floating vehicle. In reality, the vehicle isn't floating or suspended on wires of any kind, but on top of a platform that was surrounded by mirrors that reflected the sand around it to give it the appearance of floating.

Along with 1988's Caddyshack II (1988), Big (1988) and Beetlejuice (1988), notable for containing "the F word" in a film rated PG by the Motion Picture Association of America during the early years of the PG-13 rating. Interestingly, the original video label erroneously states that the film was rated PG-13. 

During his scene, Michael Winslow did all the sound effects. In the commentary for the movie Mel Brooks jokes that they saved around a $100 by letting him do this.

Six complete Dot Matrix suits were built for Lorene Yarnell Jansson to wear and all of them were used up due to breakage on set. For the interior scenes, the feet were outfitted with roller skates, but for the desert exteriors she was given flat-bottomed shoes. Dot's face was somewhat inspired by Joan Rivers who had already been contracted to provide the voice.

The escape pod launch sequence is a unused clip from Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977) provided to Mel Brooks by Lucasfilm. 

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