The Cable Guy (1996) » Trivia

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The clip of the movie starring Clint Eastwood that the cable guy is watching as a child is from Play Misty for Me (1971).

During the `Medieval Times` dinner scene, Jim Carrey imitates the sequence from The Silence of the Lambs (1991), where Hannibal Lecter uses the sliced-off face of Sgt. Pembry to escape incarceration. In that film, Dr. Lecter used the knife of his other guard/victim, Sgt. Boyle, to remove the face. Sgt. Boyle was played by Charles Napier. Napier also appears as a police officer in "The Cable Guy", showing up at the karaoke party, and later Steven`s office, to arrest him.

When The Cable Guy is assaulting Robin`s date (Owen Wilson) he throws him into the wall while saying "That`s gotta hurt, Gene". He is referring to Wrestling announcer `Mean` Gene Okerlund.

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# The trial scenes shown on television, featuring Ben Stiller as brothers Sam and Stan Sweet, is reference to infamous Menendez Brothers who were on trial for murdering their parents.

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# All of the Cable Guy`s aliases are obviously from TV shows - Ernie "Chip" Douglas from "My Three Sons" (1960), Murray Slaughter from "Mary Tyler Moore" (1970), George Jetson from "The Jetsons" (1962), Jean-Luc Picard from "Star Trek: The Next Generation" (1987), Carmine "The Big Ragu" Ragusa from "Laverne & Shirley" (1976), Darrin Stevens and Larry Tate from "Bewitched" (1964) and finally Ricky Ricardo from "I Love Lucy" (1951).

Jack Black plays Steven`s friend Rick. Towards the end of the movie, his fellow bandmate from Tenacious D, Kyle Gass, can be seen playing the couch potato who reaches for a book when his cable cuts out.

Carrey was paid 20 million dollars for his work in this film - a new record.

Every cast member of "The Ben Stiller Show" (1990) appears on screen during the film at least once.

Although Judd Apatow only received a credit as producer he also was one of the film`s writers. He was denied a screenwriting credit by the Writers Guild of America and challenged the ruling, claiming that he wrote much of the movie`s dialogue and many of the scenes.

At an early stage of the project, some media announced that the cable guy would be in fact harassing a young woman instead of a man, implying much sexual motivations from the title character.

The scene at Medieval Times where Chip Douglas (Jim Carrey) asks for Steven`s (Matthew Broderick) chicken skin and then performs his The Silence of the Lambs (1991) impression was all improvised. During one take, Carrey asked for the chicken skin out of nowhere. After doing the "Silence of the Lambs" bit, director Ben Stiller loved it and wanted to keep it in the film even though it wasn`t in the script. If you look at Matthew Broderick`s face during this scene, you can tell he is cracking up. His reaction is a genuine laugh.

During the fight at the theme restaurant "Medieval Times", Jim Carrey and Matthew Broderick use weapons similar to those used in the "Star Trek" (1966) episode entitled "Amok Time". The music from that scene was also from "Amok Time". Director Ben Stiller is a huge Star Trek fan.

The part of the Cable Guy was originally written for Chris Farley, but scheduling conflicts forced him to decline the role.

During filming of the scene in which the Cable Guy (Jim Carrey) plays basketball, it was discovered that Carrey could barely dribble a basketball, much less make a basket. Director Ben Stiller had Carrey mime the action without a ball and visual effects technicians added the basketball in postproduction.


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