Everybody Wants Some!!, named after the Van Halen song, is being hailed the “spiritual sequel” to cult classic Dazed and Confused. Powell, Russell and Johnson got on like three real life good friends as they answered questions from various local media outlets.
When asked about the Rapper’s Delight scene, Powell explained that Linklater wanted them to learn the entire 13 and a half minutes. While the guys debated as to whether or not that song was supposed to be in the film originally, they all agreed that they loved the song.
Russell stated that there wasn’t really any pressure to live up to the status of Dazed and Confused, despite similarities:
[RUSSELL] “It was never mentioned. The way Rick works is he understands that there is no way you can make an actual sequel to Dazed and Confused, it’s not possible. It’s not the way he makes movies. But he kind of, I think everything is a spiritual successor to everything he does. When you go back and watch all of his movies, there’s a through line through them and that’s his mind. This had the same elements of Dazed and Confused, it was an ensemble, it was people having fun, it was school, but other than that I can’t draw too many similarities between the two movies. They’re in very different times in their lives.”
[POWELL] “It’s one of those things that if you try to be Matthew McConaughey, Ben Affleck, or Parker Posey, in those types of movies then you’re setting yourself up for failure. I think this movie is really original and unique. We put our own glove on the canvas.”
While you may recognize Glen from Scream Queens or The Expendables 3 and you may know Wyatt Russell from 22 Jump Street or as Kurt and Goldie’s son, the name J. Quinton Johnson is probably unfamiliar. That’s because this is Johnson’s first feature film besides, as he puts it, “a student film I did where I had no lines.” How does he think this will impact his career? Johnson notes that one of the big things in the movie is kind of “accepting things as they come to you” so he plans to keep working hard.
Johnson also had this to say:
[JOHNSON] “When you work with someone like Richard Linklater, like when he takes notice of you, other people notice that notice. So that’s great for all of us as we go forth in our careers. We’ve talked about capitalizing on the momentum. There’s a certain momentum that when you get cast in these things and these things start to come out, you have to be ready and able to capitalize on those. I think so much of that is still doing the work and prepping yourself for when opportunity comes knocking, you’re ready to open the door to warm chocolate chip cookies. You know what I mean?”
At this point there was a little good-nature ribbing between friends. “No, I actually don’t know what you mean.” Interjects Powell jokingly. “You dunno what I mean?!” Johnson asks quickly and then laughs. “You open the door like hey, you open the door and you’re ready to go with open arms. Going forward I’ll have to work just as hard as I did on this film.”
The teasing and witty banter were how much of this interview went, especially between Powell and Johnson. Johnson, a theater musical major from University of Texas knew a lot of the extras on set because he went to school with them.
When asked how much of their real life personalities were in their characters, Russell explained:
[RUSSELL] “When you get to know the guys, you get to know their personalities as time went on and everybody had about 5% of who they were in their character, but we’re actors so we play- people sometimes forget that tapping in to that part of your personality is something that’s important for the character, and everybody played a 100% of that 5%. That was how everybody started to get their character. I’ve got a little bit of this guy in me, everybody’s got a little bit of this guy and then you just hone in on that 5% and that becomes who you are.”
Powell then added:
[POWELL] “And I would even say art imitated life and life imitated art in a really weird way where people started talking like their characters.”
The cast spent a few weeks leading up to filming on Linklater’s ranch in Texas. In regards to how that impacted the atmosphere and work relationships, both Powell and Russell said that kind of comradery is “almost never achieved.
Russell went on to say:
[RUSSELL] “Most of the time you’re filming and people are meeting on day one. Rehearsal is a luxury you never have and you can only do when everyone is unknown like we are.”
Powell elaborated by stating that a lot of movie stars don’t like rehearsal and that this was “really special, it’s not always like this”. This cast stayed in cabins together, played baseball, went over lines, took dance lessons, repeat. Their relationship transcended that of mere co-stars in a movie.
That is certainly reflected in the cast itself. Everybody Wants Some!! is in theaters starting today and if you missed our review on the movie itself, here’s a handy link so you can be even more informed on what to expect.