On April 25th, 2015, Broken Lizard successfully raised $4,617,233 in a noble crowdfunding attempt to back Super Troopers 2 on IndieGoGo. The perks were pretty straightforward: digital scripts, t-shirts and mustaches, even just a ticket to go see the thing when it hit theaters. If you shelled out enough money, however, you received an invitation to attend the “Red Carpet IndieGoGo Premiere Event” in New York City—a first-look screening and Q&A with Broken Lizard and the cast.
Almost three years later, and less than three weeks out from the much-anticipated sequel’s 4/20 release, I waltzed into this premiere event—on behalf of a very kind and random gesture from Foxlight Media—to observe and enjoy a film I was very much looking forward to. (Now seems like a good time to tell you that Super Troopers and Beerfest were significant cultural events in my formidable years—not unlike many guys my age I presume.)
The night didn’t let down. The film was as silly and hilarious as you'd expect. And Steve Lemme (Mac), Paul Soter (Foster), Erik Stohlanske (Rabbit), Kevin Heffernan (Farva!) and Director Jay Chandrasekhar (also Thorny) all made their appearances, grateful to spend their time divulging insight and backstory onto the film.
Here’s the best of the best of what went down.
Steve Lemme on the potential downside of the film's 4/20 release date and the studio's marketing ploy to stoners
"When you market the movie to stoners, it’s great… With 4/20, they’re creating a holiday weekend for us, except that stoners notoriously don’t get off the fucking couch. So if you have stoner friends, just tell them to go—tell them to rally.”
Erik Stohlanske on filming Rabbit's infamous scenes of gratuitous male nudity
“When we were shooting that shaving cream scene it always kept melting… so it was messy, it was very messy. And we kept having to reapply—I felt terrible. It was a woman who was the prop master and I had to apologize over and over again as she kept having to reapply.”
(The shaving cream was on his penis. But you already knew that.)
And now, an Oral History of Convincing Rob Lowe to Tug a Dick in Super Troopers 2
Heffernan: “We had written it into the script… but we wanted to attract an esteemed actor to play that part. And Jay was concerned so we pulled it out of the script.”
Chandrasekhar: “The bait and switch.”
Heffernan: “The bait and switch. So when it came to do that part, we were pushing Jay, like, ‘You’ve got to tell him we still have to do that dick tug. Even though it’s not in there, we gotta do it.’ And finally, you went and told him.”
Chandrasekhar: “I said, ‘You know, there was this old joke that we had where, uh, you just sort of tug this guy’s dick—' and [Rob] goes 'Oh yeah. Let’s do it.'"
Paul Soter: “He told me, he said, ‘We should do a teaser trailer for the movie that’s just me speed bagging the dick. Nothing else. Just: boom boom boom—Super Troopers 2.’”
On the gang's writing process
Having five writers on one script can feel like a jumbled affair. So the most compelling and worthwhile question of the night invited the guys to divulge a little bit about their writing process. And more specifically, their writing process for Super Troopers 2:
Chandrasekhar: “This one was 37 drafts. We write a plot and spend a lot of weeks organizing a story. And then we break it up into sections of five and each write, like, 15 pages. We do that for about three or four drafts and then we turn it over to the next guy and he sort of incorporates the notes of the next 33 drafts. And we’ll fight over jokes but we end up with what we end up with.”
Soter: “90% of the process is intended to be more or less what you see: the five of us in one space trying to make each other laugh, taking the piss out of eachother. And that (the final result) is the best version of what we do.”
Lemme: “And when you’re friends with each other—we’re all friends from college—we spend a lot of time with each other not working. And that’s often when some of the best jokes happen: when we’re just hanging out laughing with each other about something totally unrelated to the movie. And then we find something that can actually fit into the story structure.”
Lemme continued, graciously.
“The script was finished by the time we did the IndieGoGo campaign. And then you guys raised 4.5 million dollars. Which was—[begins applauding] we thank you for that. Again.”
Steve Lemme on what’s next for the Broken Lizard gang
Lemme: “Opening weekend for Super Troopers 2 is really important. If people actually rally to go opening weekend that’ll unlock a lot of doors for us... So Super Troopers 3 is something we’ve been working on. And also, we’re talking about Potfest.”
4/20 2020 can't come soon enough.