Dave Thomas Interview
Bob and Doug McKenzie May 17, 2000 @12:27am EDT

I unfortunately missed the online chat with Dave Thomas at IGN FilmForce, mainly due to a problem with their chat server. (It was intended to be held at 8pm on May 9, but IGN's chat server bombed. They didn't annoucne the new date, May 16, until a day or two before, and I missed it.) Good thing they posted the transcript.

He talks about being a McKenzie Brother, John Candy, Strange Brew and DVD's (not yet, if you were wondering), his new TV and movie projects, Home Brew, his brother Ian, and a too much other stuff to fit on this page. Read the transcript (either the link above, or my local copy below) for details.

The main message is that Home Brew is still non-existant. Todd McFarlane hasn't done anything about funding the movie, yet:

Q: Wasn't Todd McFarlane going to fund Home Brew? Can we write and lobby him for it?

A: Todd likes to take credit for a lot of things. But so far he hasn't stepped up to the financing plate to take any meaningful swings. By all means lobby.

Also read the interview with Dave at FilmForce from a few months ago.

<Zoro-FilmForce> Thanks for coming to the IGN FilmForce
(http://filmforce.ign.com) chat with Dave Thomas, of McKenzie Brothers, SCTV,
Grace Under Fire and more.  This chat will be moderated.  Send your questions
for Dave Thomas to the moderators (those are the people at the top of the list,
with @ signs in front of their names) by double-clicking on their names to send
them a private message.  
<Zoro-FilmForce> What does it feel like to be continuously recognized as a
McKenzie Brother?
<DaveThomas> Better that than to be remembered at a funeral home.
<Zoro-FilmForce> What kind of a person was John Candy like?
<DaveThomas> John was a very strong, fun loving guy who could drink more, eat
more, stay up later, and party harder than anyone I knew including the late
John belushi.
<Zoro-FilmForce> Are there any plans for a Strange Brew DVD?
<DaveThomas> Not as yet.
<Zoro-FilmForce> What projects are you working on now?
<DaveThomas> i am writing a TV pilot with two very funny guys, I have a movie
that I wrote for Chevy Chase that's in the process of being funded and on the
weekends I am a Warlock at a local satanic cult.
<Zoro-FilmForce> Are there any plans for an SCTV reunion or special?
<DaveThomas> No. We are all too old for that kind of frenetic performance
stuff, we have families, responsibilities and mortgages.
<Zoro-FilmForce> What is the status of Home Brew?
<DaveThomas> It seems, at present, that it is highly unlikely that we will get
that little masterpiece funded. It's sad really. I know there's an audience for
it but I just can't convince rich guys that that is true.
<Zoro-FilmForce> Will you ever work with Rick Moranis again some capacity other
than Strange Brew?
<DaveThomas> Rick and I are working on something very innovative right now.
<Zoro-FilmForce> Will any of your TV shows you talked about in your FilmForce
interview ever see the light of day?
<DaveThomas> Hmmm. i forget which ones I talked about. Development is a little
like burning ants with a magnifying glass. they all seem alike and go up in
smoke very fast.
<Zoro-FilmForce> Wasn't Todd McFarlane going to fund Home Brew? Can we write
and lobby him for it?
<DaveThomas> Todd likes to take credit for a lot of things. But so far he
hasn't stepped up to the financing plate to take any meaningful swings.
<DaveThomas> By all means lobby.
<Zoro-FilmForce> Who came up with the McKenzie's theme music?
<DaveThomas> If you mean the irritating "coo roo coo coo coo coo coo coo". That
was me. I'm very good at irrating people.
<Zoro-FilmForce> Have you seen any of DeNiro's performance in Rocky and
<DaveThomas> Yup. Way too overqualified for that role.
<Zoro-FilmForce> Maybe all the fans of Strange Brew can get together and fund
the film... It should be supported by the Canadian government as a national
<DaveThomas> yes on both counts. I think a publically funded movie can be
assisted by the government.
<Zoro-FilmForce> Is there a concept -either TV or film - that you could just
never get funded or off the ground?
<DaveThomas> Yeah. I had a "Court TV' thing I ran with for a couple of years
and never quite got it off the ground
<Zoro-FilmForce> Would you and Rick ever do another album if the film never
comes to be?
<DaveThomas> I dunno. i have no real desire to do an album. But I didn't when I
did the first one. So, who knows
<Zoro-FilmForce> Can you give us an assessment on the state of comedy today?
What do you think of Chris Rock, SNL, any promising stand-ups?
<DaveThomas> I like Chris Rock. I think Tom Green can be funny but not when a
mouse avtually ***** in his mouth. SNL seems kind of intense to me. All the
characters seem to be yelling. I dunno. maybe I'm getting old and sensitive to
noise. I like Norm McDonald.
<Zoro-FilmForce> What is your biggest disappointment in your showbiz career,
and what's your greatest high to date?
<DaveThomas> The biggest disappointment is not being able to get "Reid Fleming
- World's Toughest Milkman" off the ground. It's based on a comic and I love
it.. The biggest high was having lunch 3 times with Johnny Carson.
<Zoro-FilmForce> What are the difficulties of writing for TV today?
<DaveThomas> Today, TV is run by a bunch of MBA's who have NO SENSE OF HUMOR.
It makes selling funny ideas to them very difficult and ultimately a game of
politics. It's like being in the Senate of Ancient Rome and trying to convince
Caesar in the middle of an epilectic fit that you have a better way of running
the Empire (a topical Gladiator reference)
<Zoro-FilmForce> Do you keep in touch with the people from SCTV?
<DaveThomas> yes. Marty Short and I are almost neighbors. Rick and I talk three
times a week. I see Joe every once in a while. That's about it.
<Zoro-FilmForce> What kind of a person is Rick? He seems to have dropped off
the face of the earth...
<DaveThomas> Rick hate show business and the BUSINESS that it has become. Rick
has dropped out by his own election not because the studios don't like him. He
will reappear, when he choses, on some project that seems interesting to him.
<Zoro-FilmForce> You mentioned in your filmforce interview an online site you
were working on. When is that going up?
<DaveThomas> Soon, I hope. We have some of the funding in place already and new
very little money now to fill it out. This site will be a lot of fun.
<Zoro-FilmForce> Do you go to comedy clubs anymore? If so, do they give you a
nice table?
<DaveThomas> No. I hate dark rooms full of smoke.
<Zoro-FilmForce> Is Martin Short as weird in real life as he seems on the
screen? :)
<DaveThomas> Martin plays a wierd guy when it suits him. But in reality, he has
a wife, 3 kids and he is a great husband and Dad. So go figure!
<Zoro-FilmForce> I am from winnipeg and love sctv. I also like dave's brother
ian thomas. Ian ias a singer. Do you stay in contact with Ian and what is he up
<DaveThomas> Of course I do. he's my brother. Who do you think i am, Caine? i
am going to Toronto this weekend for his son's wedding.
<DaveThomas> Ian is writing scores for movies and recording albums with his
band "The Boomers".
<Zoro-FilmForce> How much input would you have with a Strange Brew DVD?
<DaveThomas> DVD. DVD! DVD~*^aaaggghhh. What is all this about DVD's?
<DaveThomas> Details. I demand details.
<DaveThomas> Okay, I demand that MGM make me the executive in charge of
production and I want to be at the tranfers session, even if it goes all night.
I want to color correct the negative and I insist that it be in letterbox
format so people at home can watch a small bar in the middle of their screen.
Also, it has to be in THX sound or I won't approve it. After all, we all have
surround sound at home, don't we?
<Zoro-FilmForce> With the recent failure of Battlefield Earth, what was it like
working (and directing) Travolta?
<DaveThomas> Did it fail? I went out for a leak and I missed that? Is it over
for John again? Oh please, more predictions based on ONE STINKING CORNY SCIFI
<DaveThomas> John is a nice man and equally deserves the millions that guys
like him are paid to stand in front of a 35mm lense and show their teeth for
100 million people.
<Zoro-FilmForce> Will you ever write a book about the McKenzies? I loved your
SCTV book.
<DaveThomas> I will NEVER write another book. I had no idea what a pain writing
a book would become. ALSO I will NEVER do another chat session. I am typing
almost as fast as I did in college when I had to write all my essays at the end
of the year.
<Zoro-FilmForce> What was it like working with Max Von Sydow?
<DaveThomas> Comedians and comedy actors are one thing (here I mean, Chevy.
Marty, Rick, Danny Aykroyd, and so on). Max is a REAL ACTOR and working with
him was like crossing over into another demension.
<Zoro-FilmForce> How often are you confused with the Wendy's guy?
<DaveThomas> FIRST OF ALL, his name isn't DAVE THOMAS. His first name is Ralph.
It's R."Dave" Thomas. You know, the business guy short name. So it bugs me. I
also don't like his food.
<Zoro-FilmForce> Were there any scenes deleted from Strange Brew?
<DaveThomas> Yes. There were some full frontal nudity scenes that Rick and i
did, just for the hell of it, that were deleted by MGM.
<Zoro-FilmForce> Will you be doing any more Molson commercials?
<DaveThomas> No.
<DaveThomas> NO
<DaveThomas> NO. NO. NO.
<Zoro-FilmForce> What are you most interested in pursuing creatively right now?
<DaveThomas> Hmmm. I'm very into sex these days.
<Zoro-FilmForce> Can you tell Rick that we miss him?
<DaveThomas> Consider it done.
<DaveThomas> But that won't make him re-emerge.
<Zoro-FilmForce> Can you tell us any more about the Chevy Chase film?
<DaveThomas> It's a lawyer comedy, set in a court room, with Chevy as an
ambulance-chasing lawyer who gets a shot at the big time - typical story line
right? What isn't typical is the jokes. They are politically incorrect, and
funny, I think.
<Zoro-FilmForce>  Do you still keep in touch with Bob Hope?
<DaveThomas> No one keeps in touch with Bob these days.
<Zoro-FilmForce> Do you have any hobbies?
<DaveThomas> yeah, I have hobbies. I collect Superman comics and swords.
There's a connection there and I'll let you figure it out. Needless to say,
Superman, Gladiator and Braveheart are my favorite movies of all time.
<Zoro-FilmForce> What is your favorite comedian these days, other than
<Zoro-FilmForce> Superman... interesting. Why's that?
<DaveThomas> Okay question one. Jim Carey. Without question the undisputed king
of physical comedy. AND as for Superman, think about it. A rocket from another
planet crashes on earth and a baby with incredible super powers grows up to be
the champion of justice and fair play in a world that could go bad. Who
wouldn't want that reality instead of what we see on the news every night?
<Zoro-FilmForce> What do you want to do more than anything else?
<DaveThomas> More than anything else? Hmmm
<DaveThomas> I guess I would really like for there to be an afterlife something
like the one in "What Dreams May Come". A place with depth, dimension and where
we could keep our identities for eternity.
<Zoro-FilmForce> Thank you for attending the IGN FilmForce chat with Dave
Thomas!  Going back to unmoderated chat...
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