Thursday, August 28, 2014
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The Beatles, and John Lennon, invade 'Dinner For Schmucks'

"Dinner for Schmucks" director Jay Roach talks about the importance of the Fab Four in his films, and in his life.

The Beatles, and John Lennon, invade 'Dinner For Schmucks'

If you've seen Dinner for Schmucks, you know that that great, goofy mouse diorama opening-credits sequence is accompanied by the Beatles song "The Fool on the Hill." And you know that when Paul Rudd's character crashes into Steve Carell's, the latter amusingly misquotes John Lennon's classic, "Imagine."

What you may not know is how hard-fought the effort was to secure the rights to "The Fool on the Hill," and how important the Fab Four and its canon are to Dinner for Schmucks director Jay Roach.
"I've been inspired by the Beatles for so long," says the filmmaker, responsible for the three pseudo-Sixties Mod Austin Powers films as well. "You can see it in Austin Powers through and through. A Hard Day's Night – just the whole vibe of that movie."
Roach's wife is Susanna Hoffs, late of the Bangles, and "probably the biggest Beatleophile that ever existed," he says. "The Bangles are very much inspired by them. So there's a lot of Beatles in our household, and what an amazing feeling having that song in our film. I still can't get over it.… And I'm grateful to Paul McCartney because he himself had a lot to do with lobbying everybody else involved in the [rights] to let us use it."


Steven Rea Inquirer Movie Columnist and Critic
About this blog

Steven Rea has been an Inquirer movie critic since 1992. He was born in London, raised in New York City, and has lived in Los Angeles, San Francisco and Iowa City, Iowa. His column, "On Movies," appears Sundays in Arts & Entertainment, his reviews appear in the Weekend section on Fridays, and his blog, On Movies Online, can be found here. He is a member of the National Society of Film Critics.

Steven Rea's previous blog posts can be found here. Read his most recent columns and reviews, here. He is the author of the book “Hollywood Rides a Bike,” and also curates the movie stars and bicycling photo blog, Rides A Bike.

Reach Steven at

Steven Rea Inquirer Movie Columnist and Critic
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