Home Interesting Facts I Can Be Your Best Friend Or Your Worst Enemy: 10 Behind-The-Scenes Facts About The Cable Guy – Screen Rant

I Can Be Your Best Friend Or Your Worst Enemy: 10 Behind-The-Scenes Facts About The Cable Guy – Screen Rant

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After the triple whammy of The Mask, Dumb and Dumber, and Ace Ventura: Pet Detective led to an unprecedented string of hits, the seemingly infallible and endlessly bankable Jim Carrey finally had a box office flop with The Cable Guy. Despite the movie’s financial failure, it has since come to be appreciated by a cult audience as an underrated darkly comic gem.

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Carrey gives one of his best performances as Chip Douglas, while Matthew Broderick proved to be a great foil for Carrey’s unique rubberiness in one of the earliest movies produced by Judd Apatow. There are some interesting details from the making of The Cable Guy too.

10 Ben Stiller Was Originally Going To Play Chip In Addition To Directing

Ben Stiller originally planned to play Chip in addition to directing The Cable Guy. However, he felt that directing and acting would be too much work (although he’d later direct and star in such movies as Zoolander and Tropic Thunder), so he took the smaller role of the Sweet brothers.

Producer Judd Apatow wanted to make this movie his directorial debut, but the studio vetoed it. He wouldn’t get to direct a movie until almost a decade later with The 40-Year-Old Virgin.

9 A Real-Life Cable Guy Inspired The Script

Cable Guy

Lou Holtz, Jr. had never written a screenplay before cooking up the first draft of The Cable Guy and he hasn’t written one since. He got the idea when he was working as a prosecutor in L.A. and saw a cable guy in his mother’s apartment building late at night and wondered why he was there so late.

According to Judd Apatow, the original script written by Holtz, Jr. was a lighthearted What About Bob?-style buddy comedy about a clingy friend. The title character was a likable loser as opposed to a creepy stalker.

8 Jim Carrey Brought The Midnight Express Parody To The Script

While Jim Carrey was shooting Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls in South Carolina, Ben Stiller and Judd Apatow flew out to meet with him to discuss the script for The Cable Guy.

RELATED: 10 Most Ridiculous Jim Carrey Characters, Ranked

During one of these discussions in a bar, Carrey came up with the idea for the Midnight Express parody that appears in the movie, simply writing, “T*ts on glass,” on a bar napkin.

7 Judd Apatow And Leslie Mann Met While Working On This Movie

Producer Judd Apatow met his future wife Leslie Mann when she came in to audition for the role of Robin in The Cable Guy and Apatow read Jim Carrey’s part opposite her. The two got married in 1997.

They have two kids, Maude and Iris Apatow, who have appeared alongside Mann as fictionalized versions of themselves in a couple of overlong Judd Apatow movies.

6 Chip Was Written With Chris Farley In Mind

Chris Farley in 'Tommy Boy'

The role of Chip Douglas was written with Chris Farley in mind, and Farley was initially interested in playing the part. He had a two-picture deal with Paramount Pictures. After the success of Tommy Boy, he was offered the lead role in The Cable Guy for $3 million.

However, for a lot less money, he was also offered the chance to do Black Sheep, another buddy movie with David Spade. Farley decided to work with Spade again and the role went to Jim Carrey. Adam Sandler was also considered for the part.

5 The Ball In The Basketball Scene Was Added In Post-Production Because Jim Carrey Couldn’t Dribble

When The Cable Guy’s basketball scene was being shot, it became immediately obvious to Ben Stiller that Jim Carrey couldn’t even dribble a ball, let alone play the game well.

So, he told Carrey to just mimic the movements of dribbling and making baskets and added the ball in digitally in post-production.

4 Larry The Cable Guy Tried To Get The Filmmakers To Change The Title Of The Movie

Larry the Cable Guy was very upset about the development of The Cable Guy. Before production began, the comedian’s manager called Judd Apatow to say that Daniel Whitney had worked for a long time to build up that character and worried that the movie would ruin his career.

RELATED: 10 Comedy Masterpieces From The 90s That You’ve Probably Never Seen

However, it was too late in development for Apatow to change the title. He’s since said that Larry the Cable Guy has had more of a lasting legacy than the movie The Cable Guy, so he won.

3 The Chicken Skin Silence Of The Lambs Parody Was Improvised By Jim Carrey

During the scene at Medieval Times, Jim Carrey improvised taking Matthew Broderick’s chicken skin and doing an impression of Hannibal Lecter in The Silence of the Lambs.

If you look closely at Broderick, you’ll see that his reaction is genuine surprise followed by a genuine laugh.

2 Judd Apatow Was Denied A Writing Credit, Despite Writing Most Of The Movie

Judd Apatow was only credited as a producer on The Cable Guy, but he was also responsible for getting the script to its final form. Credited writer Lou Holtz, Jr. wrote a lighthearted buddy comedy and Jim Carrey recruited Apatow to make it darker, describing his vision as “Rosemary’s Baby meets The Odd Couple.”

Unfortunately, Apatow was denied a writing credit by the Writers Guild of America. The film’s novelization (yes, The Cable Guy has a novelization) gave Apatow the credit he was due.

1 Jim Carrey Made A Record-Breaking $20 Million For The Movie

Jim Carrey was paid a whopping $20 million for starring in The Cable Guy. At the time, this was the most money that anyone had been paid for a performance in a movie. Ironically, it ended up being Carrey’s first box office flop.

During his salary negotiations, Carrey reportedly made his lawyer and his two managers wear Ace Ventura nightgowns to remind them where the big bucks come from.

NEXT: Is That Hair Gel?: 10 Behind-The-Scenes Facts About There’s Something About Mary

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