HeadScratcher No. 5: The real world

Juliaow_lFirst off, props to Andy Feldman, who sent us the correct answer to this week’s question about, oh, eight minutes after I posted it. Very good reflexes, Grasshopper.

Andy, and only 14 others, knew the correct answer: The film’s real-life inspiration appears in a cameo role in the film. So yes, the real Frank Abagnale plays a French cop in Catch Me If You Can; Erin Brockovich shows up as a waitress (named Julia, natch) in Erin Brockovich; Larry Flynt chews the scenery as a Cincinnati judge in The People vs. Larry Flynt; and Jim Garrison plays nemesis Earl Warren in JFK. (A few of you cited archive footage of President Kennedy used in the film, but apparently forgot that JFK is a film about the Kevin Costner-Jim Garrison character.)

"As for your so-called HeadScratcher," wrote new PopWatch bullies Paul Secrest and Paolo Guttaduro. "All of these movies flagrantly violate the so-called fourth wall by featuring cameos from the person on whose life the movie is based in a role other than themself. Nice try." Listen, P&P, I will totally meet you at the bike rack after school and we will settle this like men: I’ll bring the Pop Culture Edition of Trivial Pursuit; you guys bring that so-called spinach dip I like so much.

Bryan Yerman made us chuckle when he offered that the movies were "all about baseball players, slain presidents, thieves, lawyers, or pornographers." Bin Nguyen called in from Germany to say he thinks all the lead actors have too much body hair, which is, well, just weird, but compellingly weird, so welcome to PopWatch, Bin. It’s obviously a very exclusive club.

Others cited a TV and/or awards connection (Emmy-nominated actors, Oscar-nominated directors, people currently appearing on a series…). Well, no, but keep that train of thought in mind come Friday when we’ll have a special Emmy Edition HeadScratcher.

Thanks for playing! You light up our lives!

Comments (3 total)
  • EP Sato

    So how come you didn’t include “Rudy” or “Fear and Loathing In Las Vegas” in your list? THem are essential “the real guy has a great cameo in this movie” type movies meƱ.

  • Mirka

    And don’t forget Permanent Midnight, with Jerry Stahl’s cameo as the doctor in the methadone clinic who tells Ben Stiller (playing Stahl) that he’s a worthless junkie who will never be able to kick the habit.

  • lotensin 5

    Pot should be, should not be decriminalized

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