Who’s Car We Takin?

This week the gents are back and this time we are discussing some of our favorite heist movies. So get your popcorn ready, grab a drink, make sure to tip and enjoy this action packed episode of Yumper and Svo At The Show!





Reservoir Dogs (1992)

          Starring Harvey Keitel, Tim Roth, Chris Penn, Steve Buscemi, Lawrence Tierney, and Michael Madsen

          Budget of 1.5 million, box office of 2.9


o   Quentin Tarantino was originally going to play Mr. Pink, although he made a point of letting all the other actors audition for the part. When Steve Buscemi came in to read for it, Tarantino told him that he really wanted the part for himself, and that the only way Buscemi could possibly wrestle it from him was to do a killer audition. Buscemi duly complied.

o   The film’s budget was so low that many of the actors were asked to simply bring their own clothing as wardrobe, most notably Chris Penn’s track jacket. The signature black suits were provided for free by the designer, based on her love for the American crime film genre. Steve Buscemi wore his own black jeans instead of suit pants, and Michael Madsen wore a jacket and pants that came from two different suits.

o   The budget wouldn’t cover police assistance for traffic control, so in the scene where Steve Buscemi forces a woman out of her car and drives off in it, he could only do so when the traffic lights were green.

o   Armed with $30,000 and a 16mm camera, Quentin Tarantino was all set to make the film with a bunch of friends, including his producing partner Lawrence Bender, who was going to play Nice Guy Eddie. It was then that Tarantino received an answerphone message from Harvey Keitel, asking if he could not only be in the film, but help produce it. Keitel had gotten involved via the wife of Bender’s acting class teacher, who had managed to get a copy of the script for him. Keitel’s involvement helped raise the budget to $1.5 million.

o   Filmed in thirty-five days.

o   On a day off during the shoot, Lawrence Tierney was arrested for allegedly pulling a gun on his nephew Michael Tierney. According to Quentin Tarantino, Tierney “was taken from his bail arraignment to the set.”

o   According to Steve Buscemi in a recent podcast interview, everyone had a difficult time with Lawrence Tierney because he was easily distracted and kept forgetting his lines. Quentin Tarantino and everyone else were so upset with Tierney that Quentin fired him on the third day of filming.

o   Was voted the second greatest directorial debut of all time behind Citizen Kane (1941).

o   Wes Craven famously walked out of a screening of Quentin Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs in 1992; and Tarantino famously said, “I can’t believe the guy who directed Last House on The Left walked out of Reservoir Dogs”. Craven responded “Last House was about the evils and horrors of violence, it did not mean to glorify it. This movie (Reservoir Dogs) glorifies it.”

o   The warehouse where most of the movie takes place was once a mortuary, and thus is full of caskets. Mr. Blonde doesn’t sit down on a crate–it’s an old hearse on which he perches.

o   Dennis Hopper was offered the role of Mr. Pink by Quentin Tarantino and Harvey Keitel, but he was unavailable.

o   Matt Dillon was considered for the role of Mr. Blonde.

o   Quentin Tarantino’s shortest film to date.

o   At several points, Tim Roth had lain in the pool of fake blood for so long that the blood dried out, and he had to be peeled off the floor, which took several minutes.


The Score (2001)

          Directed by Frank Oz

o   Voice of Fozzy Bear, Yoda, Miss Piggy, Fozzie, Cookie Monster

o   Actor Blues brothers

o   Knives Out

          Starring Robert DeNiro, Edward Norton, Marlon Brando, and Angela Bassett

          Budget of 68 million and Box office of 113 million


o   Edward Norton later stated in interviews that he did this movie solely to have his name on the same poster with Robert De Niro and Marlon Brando.

o   This was Marlon Brando’s final completed film.

o   Marlon Brando took to calling director Frank Oz “Fozzie” and “Miss Piggy” during this movie. Oz has been the voice of Fozzie Bear and Miss Piggy in the various Muppet productions since the beginning. Brando’s hazing of Oz over his work with the Muppets got so bad that Robert De Niro was forced to direct Brando instead, with Oz giving him instructions via headset.

o   This is the only movie to star Robert De Niro and Marlon Brando, the first actors to win Academy Awards for playing the same role, that of Vito Corleone in the The Godfather (1972) and The Godfather Part II (1974).

o   During breaks, Marlon Brando would walk around the set naked because of the warm weather where the film was being shot.

o   The line where Max says “Uh, operator … I’ve got a nut down here who wants six million dollars. Are you all right?” was improvised by Marlon Brando. Robert De Niro’s facial expression is genuine.

o   The similar film Heist (2001) was supposed to be released in June 2001, prior to The Score being released in July. Warner Bros. pulled “Heist” from its summer release schedule and released it in November because it did not want to compete with this film. The Score was more successful at the box office thanks to its release date and positive reviews.

o   Most of the tools techniques and tactics used in this movie were authentic and functional. They were suggested or provided by technical advisor Mick Gould.

o   Michael Douglas was originally attached to star as Nick Wells.

o   Ben Affleck was offered the role of Jackie, but he turned it down.

o   The scene where Robert De Niro accepts Marlon Brando’s offer, but only for more money so he can retire, is reminiscent of a scene in Midnight Run (1988) where De Niro accepts Joe Pantoliano’s offer but only for more money so he can retire.

o   The filmmakers debated whether or not Jack should kill Danny when he stumbles upon his scheme in the basement. Ultimately, they decided that Danny’s kindness toward Jack’s fake alter ego “Brian” justified sparing his life.

o   This was the third time that Edward Norton played a character with more than one personality or alter ego. The others were Primal Fear (1996) and Fight Club (1999), in which parts of the character Jack Teller have traits and used in his alter ego, Brian, which include a stutter and some of the physicality of Tyler Durden, when not acting like Brian.


Heat (1995)

          Directed by Michael Mann

          Starring Al Pacino, Robert DeNiro and Val Kilmer

          Budget of 60 million Box office of 187 million

          Young Natile Portman as Lauren, Jon Voight as Nate, Ashley Judd as Charlene, Hank Azaria as Alan, Kevin Gage as WAingro, Tom Noonan as WAingro

          Movie has a 88% Fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes and score of 7.9/10.


o   Based of True story of Neil McCauley who was an ex Alcatraz inmate that was involved in several heists, Chuck Adamson a detective is who Al Pacino’s character is based on, once even met McCauley at a coffee shop.

o   John Voight’s character Nate is based off Eddie Bunker

o   Chicago Connection

§  On March 25, 1964, McCauley and members of his regular crew followed an armored car that delivered money to a National Tea grocery store at 4720 S. Cicero Avenue, Chicago. Once the drop was made, three of the robbers entered the store. They threatened the clerks and stole money bags worth $13,137 (equivalent to $115,000 in 2021) before they sped off in a rainstorm amid a hail of police gunfire.

§  McCauley’s crew was unaware that Adamson and eight other detectives had blocked off all potential exits, and when the getaway car turned down an alley and the robbers saw the blockade, they realized they were trapped. All four exited the vehicle and began firing. Two of his crew, Russell Bredon (Breaden) and Parille, were slain in an alley while a third man, Miklos Polesti (on whom Chris Shiherlis is very loosely based),[10] shot his way out and escaped. McCauley was shot to death on the lawn of a nearby home. He was 50 years old and the prime suspect in several burglaries.[13] Polesti was caught days later and sent to prison. As of 2011 Polesti was still alive

§  After Adamson retired, he became involved in film and Television and is thanked in Michael Mann’s Film Public Enemies (2009)

o   Keanu Reeves was offered the role of Chris, but choose to do Hamlet at the Manitoba Theatre Centere.

o   Coffee Shop Scene was unrehearsed

o   Kevin Gage did time and was called Waigro in jail.

o   Waigro was based off a real criminal who ratted out some influential Chicago criminals. His body was found nailed to a wall shed in Mexico.

o   Val Kilmer was thrilled to learn that the moment in the gunbattle scene where he runs out of bullets, and rapidly changes his magazine, is regularly shown to Marine recruits as an example of how to perform the action properly.


Oceans 11 (2001)

          Directed by Steven Soderbergh

o   Magic Mike

o   Logan Lucky

o   Che Part 1 and 2


          Starring George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon, Don Cheadle, Julia Roberts, Casey Affleck, Carl Reiner, Andy Garcia, and Bernie Mac.

          Movie Made 450.7 Million Dollars on a 85 Million Dollar Budget


o   Spawned 2 Sequels and A Remake Oceans 8.

o   Stopped making sequels when Bernie Mac died in 2008.

o   Remake of the 1960’s Film with the Rat Pack

o   Mike Myers, Bruce Willis, Ewan McGregor, Alan Arkin, and Ralph Fiennes were considered for roles but also ended up dropping out.

o   Filmmakers Joel and Ethan Coen were considered as replacements for the Wilson brothers, but Soderbergh cast Caan and Affleck instead

o   The Bellagio let the crew tap into their security system to get real surveillance footage of the casino.

o   The script was sent to Julia Roberts with a $20 bill attached. Included was a note from George Clooney that said “I hear you’re getting 20 a picture now”. This of course is a joke referencing Julia Roberts becoming the highest paid actress at $20 million per picture.

o   Andy Garcia said it wasn’t easy to do a serious scene with Carl Reiner because Reiner was so funny.

o   Steven Soderbergh wanted the actors to hang out on set to make sure they had good chemistry. During downtime, the cast often crowded around Carl Reiner to listen to his stories.

o   The cast did gamble during off hours. While there’s disagreement between who won the most (George Clooney says Matt Damon, Damon says Brad Pitt), Clooney managed to lose 25 hands of blackjack in a row.

o   Matt Damon’s part as Linus Caldwell, the pick pocket, was initially meant for Mark Wahlberg who turned down the role in order to star in Planet of the Apes (2001).

o   Don Cheadle is uncredited despite having a major role. This is due to a dispute over his billing. Cheadle wanted above the title billing alongside George Clooney, Matt Damon, and Brad Pitt. When he was refused, he refused to be credited at all. Cheadle received above the title billing in Ocean’s Twelve (2004) and Ocean’s Thirteen (2007).

o   When Rusty Ryan (Brad Pitt) is teaching the “teen idols” to play poker, all of the actors are actual “teen idols” who were at the time starring in popular TV shows. They are: Holly Marie Combs of Charmed (1998), Topher Grace of That ’70s Show (1998), Joshua Jackson of Dawson’s Creek (1998), Barry Watson of 7th Heaven (1996), and Shane West of Once and Again (1999).

o   Bruce Willis was originally cast as Danny Ocean, but had to pull out due to scheduling conflicts. He would later make a cameo appearance in the 2004 sequel.

o   The Bellagio granted the crew full access. Producer Jerry Weintraub was friends with former owner Steve Wynn. Wynn sold the Bellagio to Kirk Kerkorian before filming, but Weintraub was friends with him too.

o   Bernie Mac improvised some of his lines, including “You want me to get on the table and dance?”

o   Julia Roberts and George Clooney hadn’t met before the movie.

o   Henry Silva and Angie Dickinson, who both appeared in the original Ocean’s Eleven (1960), make cameo appearances during the fight scene. This would mark Silva’s last appearance in a film as he has since retired.

o   The boxing match that takes place in the MGM Grand is between Lennox Lewis and Wladimir Klitschko. These two have never fought, but on June 21, 2003, Lewis fought Vladimir’s older brother, Vitali Klitschko. Lewis won.

o   Ewan McGregor and Lennie James were considered for the role of Basher.

o   Alan Arkin was originally cast as Saul Bloom but dropped out due to personal reasons.

o   Jon Favreau was offered to write the screenplay but turned it down.

o   Bill Murray was supposed to play a lounge singer but the part was dropped when Murray was busy filming The Royal Tenenbaums (2001).

o   Don Rickles was an early choice to play Saul Bloom.

o   Johnny Depp was considered for the role of Linus Caldwell.



Confidence (2003)

          Directed by James Foley

o   At Close Range

o   Glengarry Glen Ross

o   50 Shades of Gray sequels

          Starring Edward Burns, Dustin Hoffman, Rachel Weisz, Andy Garcia, Brian Van Holt, Morris Chessnut, and Paul Giamatti.

          Budget of 15 million and Box office of 23 million


o    The character of the King was originally written as weighing 250 pounds and owning a boxing gym. When Dustin Hoffman read the script and told the filmmakers that he was interested in the story, but not in playing that kind of character, they rewrote the King to make him a nightclub owner instead.

o   For the scene where The King (Dustin Hoffman) meets Jake (played by Edward Burns) and Lily (Rachel Weisz) for the first time, Hoffman and Burns rehearsed the scene extensively. Weisz wasn’t included because director James Foley wanted to have her uncomfortable with how the scene might unfold. So, when Hoffman leans over and grabs her by her breast, Weisz’s shocked reaction is completely genuine.

o   Alice in Chains vocalist William DuVall has a non-speaking, uncredited role as a bar patron in the opening moments of the film. The logo of DuVall’s then-band Comes With The Fall also appeared in the movie.

o   Doug Jung wrote the script to take place in New York, and the studio wanted to shoot in Canada as a stand-in. Director James Foley did go on location scouts to Toronto – having used it to stand in for New York before, on The Corruptor (1999) – but, intensely disliking and feeling constrained by the “runaway” filmmaking process, was inspired while driving around Los Angeles during magic hour one evening to rewrite the movie to take place there instead.

o   When they talk about, and show their job in a “Tampa, Florida” port, they are actually showing the Port of Los Angeles. Tampa doesn’t have a bridge like the one that is in the movie.


The Town (2010)

          Directed by Ben Affleck

          Starring Ben Affleck, Rebecca Hall, Jon Hamm, Jeremy Renner, and Pete Postlethwaite

          Budget of 37 million and Box office of 154 million


o   Based off the Novel Prince of Thieves by Chuck Hogan

o   Before the movie was released, Ben Affleck praised Jeremy Renner’s performance. He even jokingly stated that if ever there was a bad shot or performance from someone else in a scene, editing could easily cut to Renner looking at a napkin in order to make the scene work. Jeremy Renner later would go on to receive an Academy Award nomination for his performance.

o   Jeremy Renner surrounded himself with actual convicted bank robbers in Charlestown for research, and to help him nail the accent.

o   Ben Affleck was struggling to find the right actor for the role of James Couglin. His younger brother Casey Affleck suggested Jeremy Renner, who he’d worked with in The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (2007).

o   Ben Affleck originally wanted Mark Wahlberg for the role of James Coughlin, but he was busy shooting The Fighter (2010), so the role went to Jeremy Renner, who ended up receiving the Oscar nomination for Best Actor in a Supporting Role.

o   The original cut was four hours long. After realizing that the film would never appeal to wide audiences, Ben Affleck cut the film down to two hours and fifty minutes in three days. The studio and producers loved it, but they wanted the film to be no longer than two hours and ten minutes. Eventually, Affleck cut the film down to two hours and eight minutes. While Affleck was happy with the theatrical cut, he said that an Extended Cut on the DVD and Blu-ray will feature deleted scenes on top of the cut footage. He also said that while the theatrical cut of The Town is a close adaptation of the novel “Prince of Thieves”, the extended cut is more true to the book.

o   To research her role, Ben Affleck asked Blake Lively to visit locals in Charlestown. Lively spent a month hanging around with locals, their apartments, and bars before filming began.

o   While filming of the first robbery, Ben Affleck would sometimes direct while in full costume, including the skull mask. Rebecca Hall was unable to keep a straight face, and found it difficult to take direction from him when he was in costume.

o   Ben Affleck cited The Departed (2006), Heat (1995), Mystic River (2003), and The Friends of Eddie Coyle (1973) as influences on this film. Of them, Affleck said “All are R-rated movies in that same vein, and the movies I used as the gold standard of success here.”

o   Matt Damon slipped into the press line at the Boston premiere, hidden under a Boston Red Sox cap. He and Ben Affleck are childhood best friends.

o   Jeremy Renner’s Best Supporting Actor Oscar nominated performance was the only one in the category not in a Best Picture nominee that year.

o   Chris Pine was considered for the role of Jem Coughlan. John Cena auditioned for the role of Albert “Gloansy” MacGloan.

o   The studio heads initially wanted the novel’s ending, in which Doug (Ben Affleck) is mortally wounded during his shootout with Fergie (Pete Postlethwaite) and dies in Claire’s (Rebecca Hall’s) arms in her apartment. The ending was filmed, but test audiences approved the theatrical version, in which Doug survives.


Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: