Rob Reiner and cast talk about the 25th Anniversary of STAND BY ME
I'm a little late on this one becasue I've been having fun for a week at HorrorHound Weekend but I'm back now and playing catch up with all the cool stuff that gets sent my way! Moviephone has shared a cool interview with us for the 25th anniversary of Rob Reiner's Stand By Me. Reiner and his inconic cast shares their thoughts below, all courtesy of www.moviefone.com
March 25, 2011
In celebration of its 25th anniversary, Rob Reiner's seminal classic 'Stand By Me' was released on Blu-ray for the first time this week. The movie, set in the 1950s, tells a bittersweet tale of four adolescent friends who go off into the woods in search of a rumored dead body, that may or not be a missing young boy they know. They must also find this body before the bullying Ace Merrill (Kiefer Sutherland) and his gang the Cobras get to it. What follows is a poignant tale about childhood adventures in the summer, and the pain of growing up.
The editors over at AOL’s Moviefone (www.moviefone) were able to get the cast to share some of their memories on the once-in-a-lifetime Oregon film-shoot, the adventures they had off-camera and the global impact felt by 'Stand By Me.'
HOW 'STAND BY ME' CAME TO LIFE
The story that it comes from was a book called 'Different Seasons,' a novella called 'The Body' and in it these four boys go on this journey together to find a dead body and Gordy was kind of an observer. It was just four of them and Gordy as the observer and I thought, 'Oh, maybe if I make Gordy the main guy, the story can really be about him and what he goes through and all these doubts about himself and how he feels his father doesn't love him. Through the help of his friends he starts to feel good about himself and all that, and then he goes on to be a successful writer.' Once I hit on that, and I realized Gordy was going to be the focus of it, everything kind of came very clear to me. That's when I got really excited about it.
FINDING THE RIGHT CAST
Gordie Lachance (Wil Wheaton)
I was a young actor and there were wonderful people attached to the project already and my agent got me an audition for the movie and I was lucky enough to be cast in the film. But at 12 years old, what drew me to it was that it was there. I didn't have the maturity and sophistication to appreciate what it was back then -- To me as a kid, it felt like a really cool adventure story about seeking out and going on this great adventure where from my point of view, our team "won."
Will was from LA and he was very conservative, a geek if you will. He still is and he'll admit to that. I didn't see him that way, I saw him as quiet and shy.
Wil Wheaton was the perfect Gordy. I saw this very sensitive kid who had these doubts about himself and even though he was much more self-assured, he had this sweet, sensitive look to him.
Teddy Duchamp (Corey Feldman)
For the sake of honesty and to be really brash, what drew me to it was that my parents were my managers and I did what they told me to do. It was, "Hey you have an audition with Rob Reiner." "You mean Meathead from 'All in the Family'? OK cool, what does he want?" -- When I met with Rob, the first thing I thought was that he didn't look like Meathead anymore. He had matured and looked very much like a director. So immediately when I walked in the room and took him very seriously. Number two, once I saw the material I realized this was a bit more heavy than anything I had previously worked on. The subject matter was going to be a bit more difficult and a little more intensive than anything I had done in the past.
To be honest, I don't think there was anybody else that could have played the part that Corey Feldman played. We couldn't find anybody that, he came to it with all this kind of anger and he had a very dark side to him and I said "Wow, I don't know what's going on in his life but he's the only kid at that age that could play that."
Of all of us, Corey had spent his whole life in the industry so in some ways he was the veteran kind of guy. He had been on all sets than all of us and had a real history with movies. We all went and saw 'Goonies' together. It came out while we were working on 'Stand By Me' and then 'Explorers' that River was in and we all went and saw 'Explorers' too. Of the four of us, he was kind of the movie star. That was a really weird world for me to be adjacent to.
Vern Tessio (Jerry O'Connell)
Jerry O'Connell was kind of a schlubby fat kid at the time, (laughs). Now he's this stud, he's married to Rebecca Romijn, and he's handsome and everything, but he was this schlubby kid. He came in and had no experience at all but he walked in and he was Vern. He was this kid, and I didn't know if he could do it because he had never acted before but I thought "Well, if he can be like he is in his room, he'll be the perfect Vern."
Jerry was hilarious. Jerry has such a wonderful sense of humor and it was the same when we were kids, he was constantly making us laugh. He was just so funny and so friendly and just so easy to get along with.
Chris Chambers (River Phoenix)
River Phoenix was like, you know, he was a young James Dean and I had never seen anybody like this.
I remember being extremely impressed and a little intimidated by River. He was so professional and so intense, he just seemed a lot older than he was. He seemed to have this wisdom around him that was really difficult to quantify at that age. It seemed there was more going on with him. He just seemed cool.
River and I had known each other for quite a few years now. He had moved out when he was around 9 or 10 years old, something like that. That was when we met, so we hit it off really early and we became fast friends. Whenever we saw each other on auditions we would hang out or play outside while everyone else was sitting in the room waiting for their shot. When we got to the set, or even when we got to the plane, we were very excited that we were both doing this so we got to hang out together and play together. We were like BFFs immediately and that's how the rest of the shoot went. River and I formed a very close bond for the rest of filming.
The read the full version of the Moviefone story visit: http://blog.moviefone.com/2011/03/25/stand-by-me-oral-history-25th-anniversary/