One of my all time favorite films is “Swingers” with Vince Vaughn and Jon Favreau. If you have never seen this film, you must check it out. It has become a sort of cult classic. The film is hilarious and based on Jon Favreau’s own life when he first came to L.A. The styles in the film are great, with swing dancing, and great costuming. The film was very low budget, and it’s fun to see these two guys before their careers really took off. They are both so thin!
Here is some trivia from the film and then some photos to check out. Hope you are having a great day friends!
–Trent’s license plate reads “THX1138”, a reference to George Lucas’s THX 1138 (1971).
–Vince Vaughn’s father plays the lucky gambler at the $100-minimum blackjack table.
–Jon Favreau’s grandmother, Joan Favreau, is the lucky gambler at the $5 minimum blackjack table.
–Some of the film’s casino scenes were filmed without a permit. At one point, they were asked to leave the casino by a police officer, who let them finish filming the scene before they left. If you look at the left side of the screen during the scene where Mike is betting on the $100 table, a police officer can be seen in the distance watching the filming taking place.
–The 1964 Convertible Mercury Comet Caliente driven by Vince Vaughn was actually owned by co-star Jon Favreau.
–The exterior and interior of Mike Peter’s apartment was the actual building and room that Jon Favreau lived in at the time the film was filmed. Favreau’s downstairs neighbor was actor Adam Scott.
–Nicole LaLoggia, the film’s line producer, also plays two roles in the film: she plays Michelle’s voice on the phone, and she appears as one of the bar patrons at the Derby (the brunette sitting to the right of Trent when Mike leaves the table).
–When asked to approve use of the theme music for Jaws (1975) in a scene, Spielberg saw footage of Vince Vaughn, whom he hired for The Lost World: Jurassic Park (1997).
–The movie is loosely based on the experiences writer Jon Favreau had when he first moved to LA. He had just broken up with a long term girlfriend and counted on his friends Vince Vaughn and Ron Livingston to cheer him up. The characters they play in the film are based on themselves.
–The “Bear” monologue that Trent delivers to Mike is almost verbatim something actor Vince Vaughn told Jon Favreau one night at a bar. Favreau liked it a lot and incorporated it into the script.
–When director Doug Liman first sent the script to studios, they were interested in financing it. When Liman said he wanted to cast the writer and his friends as actors, the studios backed off. The money to shoot the film was raised independently and Liman cast who he liked.
–Some of the bar scenes were shot in actual bars during business hours. A sign was posted near where they were shooting warning patrons that if they came any closer, they would be unpaid extras in the film.
–The sequence where Trent, Mike, and Sue enter the club through a side entrance closely resembles the way Henry and Karen enters a club in Goodfellas (1990), which the group refers to earlier in the film, calling it one of the best shots ever.
–The scene with Mike and Trent talking in the car on the side of the road was also filmed without a permit (not only could the production not afford one, it is actually impossible for any film production to acquire one to film on that particular highway). Originally they had planned to film just an establishing shot of the two of them in the car, and a shot of them driving away, and then film the dialog shots later. But director Doug Liman decided instead to film the entire scene on the actual side of the road. During filming, several police showed up, and demanded to see a permit. The assistant director held up the police by telling them that they had a permit, but it was in the office across town, several miles away. To get away with the rest of the scene being filmed, Liman had to pretend he was not filming, and didn’t look in the viewfinder, and used a microphone inside of the car instead of a boom. Most of the scene was filmed like this, with the police waiting just out of shot, and the two actors and the director pretending they were in fact not shooting.
–Since the filmmakers couldn’t afford to pay extras, the scenes filmed at parties were filmed at actual parties that were taking place, with many Hollywood up-and-comers in attendance. Among the people in the crowd of the first party (who turn and look at the group as they enter): screenwriters Stephen Gaghan and Mike White.
–There is a reference to Reservoir Dogs (1992) while the actors are playing poker. They refer to the scene in the beginning when they walk in slow motion as “a great scene”. As the characters in Swingers leave the poker game to go to a party, they are shown walking in slow motion in a similar fashion to the scene in Reservoir Dogs.
–The scene in which Trent angrily yells at Sue, after Sue insulted Mike, was written specifically at Vince Vaughn’s request. Vaughn wanted to show that beneath Trent’s bravado and swagger, he truly cared for Mike as a friend.
–Trent, Mikey, Sue, Rob, and Charles represent the five members of the original Rat Pack: Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Peter Lawford, Joey Bishop, and Sammy Davis Jr.