Synopsis: Figure skaters Chazz Michael Michaels (Will Ferrell) and Jimmy MacElroy (Jon Heder) take their intense rivalry too far during the Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City; both are banned from competition after a nasty brawl. After several years out of the public eye and hungry for glory, the men decide to set aside their feud and exploit a loophole that allows them to compete as a pair.
Cast: Will Ferrell, - Jon Heder, - Will Arnett, - Amy Poehler, - Jenna Fischer, - William Fichtner, - William Daniels, - Craig T. Nelson, - Matt Levin, - Ben Wilson, - Rob Corddry, - Luciana Carro, - Will Ferrell, Chazz - Jon Heder, Jimmy - Will Arnett, Stranz - Amy Poehler, Fairchild - Jenna Fischer, Katie - William Fichtner, Darren - Craig T. Nelson, Coach - William Daniels, Commissioner Ebbers - Matt Levin, Matt - Ben Wilson, Gary the Fox - Rob Corddry, Bryce - Luciana Carro, Sammy - Romany Malco, Jesse - Nick Swardson, Hector - Scott Hamilton, Sports Anchor - Andy Richter, Mountie - Greg Lindsay, Mountie - Ben Wilson, Fox - Luciana Carro, Sam
Michael Phillips - Chicago Tribune FILM REVIEW: BLADES OF GLORY By Michael Phillips Chicago Tribune Movie Critic 3 stars He's actor enough to have anchored "Stranger Than Fiction," but for most moviegoers Will Ferrell is associated with a specific comic niche of celebrity-hungry Boobus Americanus. Following Ron Burgundy, regional TV icon in "Anchorman," and Ricky Bobby, polestar of NASCAR cool in last summer's hit "Talladega Nights," Ferrell takes on another arrogant but soft-centered superstar in "Blades of Glory." This time he's Chazz Michael Michaels, hot-shot competitive skater and unsteadily recovering sex addict brought low by his own temper, resurrected only when he learns to skate nice and become one half of a guy/guy skating team opposite willowy Jon Heder of "Napoleon Dynamite." An amiable hulk, Ferrell's generally more effective when he's not all over his own comedies every second. Certainly "Anchorman" was better off for people like Paul Rudd and Steve Carell in support, and "Talladega Nights" (which I found a lot less funny than "Anchorman") benefited from John C. Reilly and Jane Lynch and Gary Cole. I have no idea if Ferrell's latest will strike "Talladega Nights" fans as too much of a retread, or not enough of one, or too outre in its comic vibe. That's saying something, given the Sacha Baron Cohen-on-Ferrell smooches in "Talladega." But fundamentally "Blades of Glory" works; it's full of laughs both subtle and ridiculous. And it's a full-on comic partnership between Ferrell and Heder, whether one of them is lifting the other by the crotch over his head or not. While it's full of cheap, low, stupid slapstick (I'm fine with all three) the verbal gags are faster and more plentiful than they were in "Talladega." After an austere, wintry set of opening titles, a triple-lutzing preteen phenom is adopted by a steely billionaire (William Fichtner). "Forged into an uber-skater," young Jimmy becomes a boy-man (Heder), whose life is a highly controlled series of practice sessions and juice-box breaks. Heder's rival is Chazz, the Garth Brooks of the ice. They tie for American gold at the world championships; a brawl ensues (a really funny one), and they're disgraced. Three years later Chazz works kiddie shows, drunk, while Jimmy fits bratty kids for skates in a sporting goods store. Then Jimmy's personal stalker informs him of a fabulous loophole in the skating federation's rules. He can compete again, if he switches divisions. His old coach (Craig T. Nelson, just right, and with some amazing rugs) brings Chazz into the equation, and while Chazz struggles with his macho distaste for his partner's balletic ways (his signature move is the "galloping peacock"), they're guided toward destiny and ultimate mastery of the most dangerous skating maneuver known to humankind, the Iron Lotus. The film's PG-13 rating refers to "a comic violent image," depicting what happens when the Iron Lotus goes awry. It's the funniest beheading in the history of film. Jenna Fischer, who plays Pam Beesly on "The Office," is sweetly amusing as Jimmy's crush, deployed by her skating-fiend brother (Will Arnett) and sister (Amy Poehler) to break up the man/man act. Some of the ruthless rivalry business grows a bit tiresome. But "Blades of Glory" takes its satiric subject seriously enough to keep the payoffs coming. Two teams of writers, Jeff Cox and Craig Cox and John Altschuler and Dave Krinsky, receive screenplay credit, but the jokes don't feel rewritten; they play like the best results of two different teams' efforts. The directors, Will Speck and Josh Gordon, are best known for their Geico caveman ads, and if you like those, you'll probably enjoy "Blades of Glory." It may not take Ferrell in any new directions, but it proves that in the right context, looking like Kurt Russell's puffy brother in flaming Spandex, on ice, can give a guy an edge. "Blades of Glory" Directed by Will Speck and Josh Gordon; screenplay by Jeff Cox, Craig Cox, John Altschuler and Dave Krinsky; photographed by Stefan Czapsky; edited by Richard Pearson; music by Theodore Shapiro; production design by Stephen Lineweaver; produced by Ben Stiller, Stuart Cornfeld and John Jacobs. A DreamWorks Pictures release. Running time: 1:33. MPAA rating: PG-13 (crude and sexual humor, language, a comic violent image and some drug references). Chazz Michael Michaels - Will Ferrell Jimmy MacElroy - Jon Heder Stranz Van Waldenberg - Will Arnett Fairchild Van Waldenberg - Amy Poehler Coach - Craig T. Nelson
- Notes provided by Paramount Pictures. -
Perhaps nowhere in sports is the marriage of athleticism and grace more evident than in the arena of world championpairs figure skating-the lifts, the jumps, the routines. Theperfect score results from the perfect blend of strength andsophistication, prowess and artistry, brawn and refinement.It's an elegant world, a rarefied universe, a noble placepopulated by the crème de la crème of skating elite. Well, it used to be ...
When the macho, swaggering Chazz Michael Michaels (Will Ferrell) takes to the rink, he is the rock star of the arena,leaving a trail of thrashed ice and shrieking female fans inhis wake. The only competitor who can match Michaels' scores (on the ice, that is) is the driven former child prodigy, Jimmy MacElroy (Jon Heder). Spotted as a youth executing triple lutzes on the frozen pond of an orphanage, MacElroy was whisked away to days of endless training, and now stands asthe picture of poise, the personification of the highest ideals of the men's sport. Michaels and MacElroy have met in finals rounds before,but their latest head-to-head at the World Championships-when they tie for first-is more than either one can bear, and their longstanding rivalry erupts into a no-holds-barred fight. The ensuing brawl not only sets fire to the World Championship's helpless mascot, but lands both athletes in hot water: Chazz and Jimmy are called before the sport's governing board, stripped of their gold medals and banned from the sport for life. Now, three-and-a-half years later, both men are still trying to find their way in a world without competitive skating. Michaels has devolved into a drunken party machine, skating as a costumed evil wizard in a kiddie ice review, and MacElroy has been banished to the shoe department of a chain sporting goods store. But then, inspiration (in the form of an over-friendly,former stalker of Jimmy's) strikes, and a loophole emerges.To skate again, all Chazz and Jimmy have to do is set aside their long festering hatred of one another and join forces-as the first male/male figure skating pair to compete in the history of the sport. ... if the sport survives, that is.
DreamWorks Pictures Presents a Red Hour/SmartEntertainment Production, "Blades of Glory," starring Will Ferrell, Jon Heder, Will Arnett, Amy Poehler, William Fichtner, Jenna Fischer, Romany Malco, Nick Swardson, Rob Corddry and Craig T. Nelson. The film is directed by Will Speck & Josh Gordon from a story by Craig Cox & Jeff Cox & Busy Philipps and a screenplay by Jeff Cox & Craig Cox andJohn Altschuler & Dave Krinsky. The film's producers are BenStiller, Stuart Cornfeld and John Jacobs. Executive producer is Marty Ewing. The film is edited by Richard Pearson. Theproduction designer is Stephen Lineweaver and the director of photography is Stefan Czapsky, ASC. This film is rated PG-13 for crude and sexual humor, language, a comic violent imageand some drug references. (C) 2007 DreamWorks LLC. All Rights Reserved.
ICE FOLLIES: THE MAKING OF "BLADES OF GLORY" When Ben Stiller and Stuart Cornfeld bought the spec script "Blades of Glory" for their company, Red Hour Films,they decided, as the sporting slogan goes, to just do it. Stiller relates, "We got sent this script, which was about the first male figure-skating team pair-these two brothers had written it, and one of them was working at a Starbucks, I think. Anyway, it was one of those scripts where you go, `Wow, I can't believe nobody's done a movie of this.' It's just such a funny idea, so we decided to try to get it made." "Blades of Glory" centers on the comic travails of two disgraced world champion skaters who must overcome their considerable differences and get back in the game by becoming the first competitive male pairs figure skaters in history. It seemed as if "Blades" was destined to be a film where good things come in twos-particularly when the search for adirector began. Red Hour, which is committed to finding newtalent, had been talking with a prominent directing pair from the field of advertising and music videos, Will Speck and Josh Gordon; the duo had made a quick reputation for themselves with their wry and hip series of Geico insurance commercials featuring a group of peeved cavemen, in addition to their Oscar®-nominated short film, "Culture." "The thing I responded to most in their work was the comedy, which was based very much in character," says Stuart Cornfeld. "They were able to take an idiosyncratic character and were just relaxed enough to move him to a comedic place that was eccentric, but still totally relatable." Per Stiller: "Will and Josh have directed so many commercials that they're actually incredibly experienced.They had to come in and work with a lot of different elements-they took the skating very seriously. They took the comedy very seriously. They skated themselves. I saw them out there. They definitely got their feet dirty, as they say." For Speck and Gordon, the world of skating presented afertile ground for satire: a realistic setting rife with some wonderfully over-the-top elements-the sometimes overblown musical accompaniment, the lavish costumes, the behind-the-scenes personal dramas-all of which could be turned on their head to comic effect. "The commitment thetwo main characters have made to this sport, which has so many fantasy and fashion elements to it, opened the story up to many levels of comedic possibility. The thing we loved is that the world of figure skaters is such a specific sort of strange little universe that has its own brand of caste system, logic, sense of style, rules and celebrity," says Speck. "The fact that there's this little world unto itself that we can explore-that's very interesting to us. The script also had several unique supporting characters that go a long way toward populating that world," adds Gordon. "Andthat, to us, was very appealing." While two heads are often better than one, the questiondoes beg to be asked: how do two people direct a film simultaneously? (Answer: Any way that works.) Adds Cornfeld: "In pre-production, Josh spent a little more time on the technical issues, while Will focused more on the script. But once we started shooting, it was very much a collaboration. They were always in sync when a decision had to be made." While the behind-the-scenes world of directing the film fell to a twosome (the pair of Speck & Gordon), the on-screen story would need to be carried by a duo of comic actors, each possessing the ability to hold his own on and off the ice, while also being able to complement each other, stylistically speaking. "One of the things that drew us to the script is the dichotomy of the two leads. They're such opposites," says Gordon. "Chazz Michael Michaels is a guy who wears all his emotions on his sleeve, and yet is very vulnerable, whereas Jimmy MacElroy is someone who's led a very sheltered life." Adds Speck: "They perfectly mirror one another, yetboth are completely dysfunctional. Each needs to learn from the other guy a little bit in order to get on with his life." Early on, Red Hour approached Jon Heder (who rose to instant stardom as the eponymous "Napoleon Dynamite") and asked him if he'd be interested in the role of Jimmy, a young man who eats, sleeps and breathes skating ... and has for almost his entire life. "What's interesting about Jon," says Cornfeld, "is that he's a very, very, very physical comedian and he's got this loveable core. One of the tough things about a character like Jimmy MacElroy is that he's a narcissist, and when you have that kind of character, you want an actor who can play him in a loveably narcissistic way." For the role of Michaels, one name, say the filmmakers,immediately leapt to mind: Will Ferrell, whose rsum ofunforgettable comic personas includes Buddy the Elf, Ron Burgundy and, most recently, Ricky Bobby and Harold Crick, toname a few. Speck observes, "Will Ferrell has been creating greatcharacters for years, starting with `SNL' and continuing infilm. He is an amazing performer who's so good at what hedoes that you forget that, as the saying goes, `comedy ishard.'" Gordon says, "He brings exactly the right mix to Chazz,which is part swagger and machismo, and part overgrown kid.He was really the only one we thought of in the part." Stiller adds, "I think you look at what Will Ferrelldoes on the ice-skating is all about attitude. It's muchless about technical, I don't even wanna say, `perfection,'because it's not even that level. It's more like technical`ability,' which is, you know, not very high, but not very necessary when you have that much attitude. It's likeattitude-ability. Well, if I've got a lot of attitude, I don't have to worry about my ability. So for Will Ferrell,to get out on the ice and do his thing and to see him, we call it the two `A's,' attitude and ability. And Will's got big-A, little-A. Jon Heder's got, like, little-A, much-bigger-A on the ability. And you put it together, and you get ... like, a quadruple A." "Will is one of our most gifted actor-comedians," finishes Cornfeld, "someone who commits himself fully to finding both the comedy and the emotional reality of a character." Jacobs adds, "It struck me as a totally magical pairing. If you saw `Napoleon Dynamite,' you know that Jon is a subtle comic who throws his lines almost over his shoulder, whileWill's brilliance is improv. We saw that they would work off each other brilliantly, picking things up from each other's style, which would ultimately enhance both their styles." As far as Ferrell was concerned, when they approached him for "Blades of Glory," they had him at hello. "Just the premise of two men skating together made me laugh," he admits. "The world of figure skating just lends itself to all kinds of comic possibilities. I'm surprised no one has ever thought of making a movie about it before." He also found the character of Chazz impossible to resist. "He's this kind of bad boy of skating and so sexy. And I do sexy very well." He adds, wryly, "Plus, I get to wear little facial tattoos, which is a real perk." What really sold Ferrell, however, was the personality differences between his character and Jimmy, and the antagonism that develops because of that. "Chazz is someone who plays to the crowd. He has his own fan section. He's very rock `n' roll, all sex and showmanship. Jimmy is all about technique and form, kind of like classical music.They're from two separate worlds and that drives the rivalry between them." For Heder, two factors were the main draws to signing on to "Blades of Glory": acting across from Ferrell while ontop of frozen water. "I thought it would be fun to do something as physical and weird and fun as ice skating," he says. "I did a little bit of roller skating growing up, butI've only been on ice skates maybe once or twice. So, I was like, `All right, this'll be fun, to really get into it and try to skate.' And then, to get to work with a comedy giant like Will Ferrell in a movie produced by Ben Stiller ... well,how could I say no to that?" Continuing to cotton to the theory that two heads are better than one, the filmmakers cast the pivotal roles of the outlandish villains Stranz and Fairchild Van Waldenberg-thebrother/sister skating team whose champion status is threatened by Chazz and Jimmy-with the adept comic performers(and real-life husband-and-wife) Will Arnett and Amy Poehler. Speck and Gordon comment, "Amy and Will walk that fine line in comedy that is so difficult to tread-this kind of humor is about amplifying recognizable idiosyncrasies, and that's what makes people laugh. If a performer gets too broad, you're pounding people over the head with a shovel. There's art in their subtlety, and those subtle choicescombine to build larger-than-life characters. Their work is just great and hilarious." Unlike Heder, Arnett is no stranger to ice skates. "I grew up in Canada, so I think that it's part of yourbirthright to be able to skate," he says. Arnett relishes the role of comic antagonist, which he played so memorably inthe Emmy-winning "Arrested Development" and in the Robin Williams-starrer "RV." Cornfeld observes that Arnett is more than willing to go out on a limb with his comedy: "One of the things that's amazing about Will is that he's really good-looking, and yet he's willing to push, in a comedic way, way beyond that. He has this likeable personality, but he doesn't use it to get the audience to like him. He's willing to just go out there as far as he can. It's really fascinating to watch." The Stranz and Fairchild relationship is intense and abit ... well, off, according to Poehler, who has demonstratedher mastery for comic subtext during her many years on "Saturday Night Live." But she doesn't want the audience toget any wrong ideas about them. She reasons, "Sure, Stranz and Fairchild spend a lot of time training together. They often have to do very intricate moves in very tight spaces.And some people feel that they're a little too close. But that's because they both want to win. The idea of winning excites them." The odd-girl-out in Camp Van Waldenberg is the duo's wallflower sister, Katie, who inadvertently falls for Jimmy MacElroy. Brimming with charm and looks, she played with subtle glee by Jenna Fischer (from the hit "The Office").After Katie's blooming interest in MacElroy comes to the attention of her brother and sister, Stranz and Fairchild guilt her into conspiring with them to bring down the competition. Fischer relished playing the somewhat offbeat Katie, and was immediately interested in joining the impressive cast.But it was a sequence with Ferrell's Chazz Michael Michaels that made her immediately pick up the phone and call her agent. "The scene that really made me want to do the movie is the one in which Katie reluctantly seduces Chazz. I loved the idea of a comedic seduction scene, because they really are so much fun to play-walking that tightrope between suggestive and silly. And since Will Ferrell was playing Chazz, I knew he was going to make it really funny." When it came time to cast the role of Coach in the film, who else would the filmmakers turn to than the man who made"Coach" a household name in the long-running TV series? Coach initially is Jimmy's trainer, but takes over the volatile Chazz and Jimmy when they decide to try pairs skating. "You just accept Craig T. Nelson as a coach," says Speck, "not sure why. No, no. Really, he has gravitas, combined with this dry sense of humor. Isn't that what the perfect coach has? In his films and television roles, he plays a dad or a cowboy or a professor-these authority figures. But no matter who he plays, it seems like we'realways waiting to see that flash of humor." Gordon comments, "We thought it would be great to have his sense of weight in this offbeat, hermetic little universe. And his coach comes off as a little driven, almost a borderline, `blow at any minute' guy...which is funny, when the reason you're about to blow is about sequins or a choreographed move." "Craig is a great actor," adds Cornfeld, "and very committed. He's more than willing to play the reality in an absurd situation and let the comedy come from that." "The thing about Coach is that he's got a lot of issues, and the guy he's attached to is trying to help him channel them through things like stained glass and pottery classes,"says Nelson. Nelson's main reason for taking the role, however, wasthe chance to skate-and get paid for it-though he hadn't donned a pair of skates in several years. "It had been along time since I'd skated. I played hockey as a kid and loved it-I thought I wanted to be a hockey player when I was growing up. But that was hockey, not figure skating. When I got back on the ice again, I had a great fear of falling down. Fortunately, I had a great coach, Bobby Beauchamp, who helped me get familiar with the ice again. It was a blast." Another of the unique comic characters found in "Blades of Glory" is Hector, Jimmy MacElroy's obsessive No. 1 fan, played by comedian and writer Nick Swardson ("Malibu's Most Wanted," "The Benchwarmers"). "Hector travels around with a teddy bear and ascrapbook, a photo album of Jimmy that is very in-depth, veryintricate," relates Swardson. "He's put a lot of time intoit ... and a lot of glitter. Jimmy's a little freaked out by him and has a restraining order out on him. But Hector shows up randomly throughout the movie and torments Jimmy. So,yeah, I guess you'd call him a kind of a stalker, but I think that's a little harsh." But Hector also serves as the impetus to set the union of Jimmy and Chazz in motion. "When Jimmy is banned fromskating, Hector's whole world crashes down on him," says Swardson. "So he finds this loophole that Jimmy can skate again if he's part of a pair." Making an appearance as the head of a touring skating troupe putting on a show called "The Grublets" (think skaters in animal costumes) is "The Daily Show" veteran Rob Corddry. "My character, Bryce, takes disgraced skaters like Chazz and plugs them into the Grublets, who are sort of these magical woodland creatures, like elves or gnomes. I have a scene with Will and one with Jon. It's all I've talked abou tfor months." Lending an air of authenticity to "Blades of Glory" isformer skating champion Scott Hamilton, who is teamed with commentator Jim Lampley; both play variations on themselves as ringside analysts. Hamilton has been offered roles in skating movies before, but turned them all down, he says."Blades of Glory," however, was impossible to resist, he laughs, "Because I get to play a version of myself without having to be myself."
DOING LUTZES WITHOUT BEING KLUTZES Speck and Gordon had very specific ideas about how tovisually tackle "Blades of Glory." Per Speck: "It's almost like shooting a musical in terms of how we started to think about and prep the skate numbers and the costuming. With the choreography and the stylistic element-taking our cue from the reality of the sport-it's pageantry and it's beautiful." "In some of those superhero movies, since nobody knows what it really looks like to fly, you can make it lookofficial," says co-director Gordon. "But everybody knows what it looks like to skate. I mean, they watch it on the Olympics." "So, what we had to do is take actors and make them look graceful," completes Speck. "Otherwise, the whole thing would look cartoonish." While "Blades of Glory" does take advantage of wires,green screen and other sophisticated effects to create thedazzling and physically impossible routines executed on-screen, Ferrell, Heder, Arnett and Poehler underwentextensive training (apart and together) to approximate thespeed and agility of professional pairs skaters. (Many supporting players joined in with the pre-filming training regimen as well.) And all of them came away with newfound respect for professional figure skaters. "You don't realize how much work it takes to ice skate," says Ferrell, "because you watch it on TV and you figure,`Well, it can't be easy,' even though they make it look so easy. But let me tell you, it's not easy. Jon and I trainedfor months and it was a big accomplishment for us just to be able to move around on the ice and look somewhat graceful." "Will [Arnett] grew up skating, but at the start, I had to train a couple of times a week just to get comfortables tanding up on skates," says Poehler. "I have a great deal of admiration for professional skaters and how easy they make it look. That's why they have such great butts and legs, and they're in such great shape. And unlike actors, they never complain." Arnett proved to be better than good at portraying a professional skater, says producer Jacobs. "He got to the point that we didn't really need a double for him. Most of his performance he was able to do himself, which sort of blew everyone away." Heder and Ferrell, meanwhile, were busy learning to crawl before they could walk, so to speak. "Most of our timeon the ice was actually spent trying to learn the basics apart from each other," says Heder, "because we knew, at some point, we'd have to start working together. But the biggest chunk of time was learning the basics, to really get a sense of it. It's very specific, like math. But when you do itright, you get this kind of exhilaration." The cast weren't the only ones who found theiradmiration for the real athletes growing-the filmmakers, too,came away with a deeper appreciation for the sport and itsparticipants. Cornfeld was particularly struck by thesport's strict regimen and rigorous practice schedules."These people are real athletes," says producer Cornfeld."But unlike other competitive sports, there's this additionallayer of music, dance, choreography and ice. It's quiteimpressive." After mastering the rudiments, the actors had to conquer the task of how to dance on the ice, solo and in pairs. Theywere fortunate to be able to work with one of the bestprofessional skating choreographers around, Sarah Kawahara,who earns high praise not only from the cast, but from one ofher best students, Scott Hamilton. "I worked with Sarah for20 years and the skater I became while working with her is somuch better than the skater I was when I competed in the World and Olympic level," he says. "She's so technical andso artistic, and her point-of-view is from such a differentplace that she forces you to get better each year. She takesyou to your limit." Not only did Kawahara have the skill to bring out thebest in the novice actor/skaters, she also had the creativesense to do it in such a way as to enhance the film's humor. "As serious as she is, Sarah gets the jokes," Hamiltoncontinues. "There was humor involved in almost every programwe worked on together. Sarah is married to a stand-upcomedian, so she knows how to make an inside joke work andeven go for broad comedy. Whatever she did, there was alwayssomething in there that was humorous. She is the perfect choreographer for this film." Kawahara's contributions were essential to making"Blades of Glory" a believable ice-skating movie, saydirectors Speck and Gordon. Working from a script that gavethem only two-line descriptions for the skating routines, the directors and the choreographer were left with the task ofcreating them from the ground up. "The skate numbers were very exciting for us," saysSpeck, "because they helped us not only give insight into thecharacter, but also functioned on a comic level. They helpedus deliver on the promise of the story." Kawahara was impressed by the raw material she was given to work with, particularly the film's two main characters."Both Will and Jon are natural athletes, in that they've played sports in the past. They also went through a lot ofcore training and physical training to learn how to skate,which helped them a great deal," she says. "Just learningthe rhythm of skating together is probably one of the mostdifficult things. It's one thing to learn to skate on yourown, and another thing to learn to skate in tandem withsomebody and feel the other person's rhythm. Fortunately,Will and Jon have great rapport. It's fun to see them actand react off each other-they got to add to their charactersthrough the choreography. "Jon's character is very ballet and dance oriented, soit was a lot of fun for him to do all these extensions andrun on his toes. He really took to the ice quite well. Ithink that perhaps, in his heart, he's a dancer. Will's character is a real rabble-rouser, and involves the crowd inhis routines, playing to them. He's amazing because he is sosubtle and then, magically, those subtleties get magnifiedbecause of how he plays them. It's never over-the-top, butjust one step away from pushing over the edge." Kawahara worked closely with the directors and theirstoryboard artist to break down the routines on paper.Having a six-foot-three man (Ferrell) lift a six-foot-one man(Heder) and carry him across the ice in a choreographedroutine is quite a challenge. ("Just the math and thephysics of it are amazing," she laughs.) But as she knows from her many years of experience withreal skaters, the challenge is what makes achieving it soexciting. Kawahara says "Blades of Glory" has enabled herto take her expertise and push the envelope into a fantasyarena. "What makes skating so special is that it brings dance and athletics together. But most of the time, when youdo a film, the figure skating is within the realm everyoneknows. The pair skating is traditional-jumps, spins and lifts-and presented in a traditional manner. But having twoguys dancing together as a pair is totally fantastical." Stunt coordinator Doug Coleman worked closely with thedirectors and the company Zero G, which provided the wirework and harnesses that enabled the actors to defy gravity.Among his many tasks on the film was coordinating a knock-down, drag-out fight between Jimmy and Chazz that results intheir being ousted from the sport. His main focus, however,was to ensure that Heder and Ferrell's pair skating was aseye-catching and real-looking as possible. "Both Jon andWill are very physical and very focused," says Coleman."They understood what was needed to make these stunts work.Will, in particular, did many of his own stunts - skating,falling down, fighting. Both really impressed me with theirdedication and newfound skill." Directors Speck and Gordon were not afraid to get intothe fray while working with Coleman to help him devise themost visually pleasing and intricate stunts. "Will and Joshwould grab me and push me around. We'd all come away sweaty," Coleman laughs. "It was definitely interesting working with these guys, because they're very physical. Joshdoesn't mind getting down on the ground and rolling around.It helped him understand what was going on. It was great having directors who don't mind getting into a good fight."
THE SPECTACLE: FANTASY ON ICE
Before principal photography began in Montreal, it wasdecided that two of the city's prominent architecturalachievements-the modernist housing complex of Moshe Safdie,Habitat `67, and architect Roger Taillibert's futuristic structures of the Olympic Park-would help define the movie'saesthetic. Initially set exclusively in an imaginaryColorado village, the script was altered so that the film'sclimactic final confrontation (between Michaels & MacElroyand Stranz & Fairchild) would take place in Montreal-no needfor the city to "stand in" for another. Though the Olympic Stadium (built for 1976's WinterGames) is not without controversy locally, Speck and Gordonfound it perfect for their needs. What the filmmakers didn'tfind so perfect was the unseasonably warm weather thataccompanied them just prior to rolling cameras. Realizing that location filming in March would present a somewhat risky situation, pre-production had spent two weeksprior to principal photography readying the ice, preparingand reinforcing it to be able to withstand above-freezingtemperatures ... which is exactly what transpired. Thetemperature rose some 20 degrees, and 48 hours of rainsdecimated the snowfall and melted the nearly 15 inches ofice. Luckily, their prep paid off, and with a minorreshuffling of exterior skating locations (and a brief returnto colder temperatures), they were able to get their location shooting done within schedule. (Later, a digital Mother Nature added more snow and ice where needed.) After the week of filming in Canada, the productionreturned to Hollywood for the interior scenes, which wereshot on soundstages, where interior sets were built todovetail with the Canadian exteriors. And all the bigskating sequences were filmed in sunny southern California-inside the L.A. Sports Arena. Production designer Stephen Lineweaver was faced withthe challenge of making one arena serve as three differentsporting venues, and color was the solution. Festooning thearena in varying Olympic color palettes, the designer and histeam came up with a winning combination of design andexecution that allowed them to redress the entire set andtransform it in less than a day. Post-production digitaleffects also created differing architectural domes thatmassively changed the look of each arena. Sometimes a production designer's job is not to make aset look pretty, but just the opposite. For a sequence inwhich the down-and-out Jimmy and Chazz are training to becomepair skaters, they are forced to practice in an abandonedwarehouse. Lineweaver utilized a cold storage building asthe warehouse, dying the ice gray and brown and dressing theset with cases of frozen fish. The insular and sometimes otherworldly nature of thesport actually helped costume designer Julie Weiss ("Bobby,""Hollywoodland") in her efforts to create the right look forthe cast. "The skating world is very specific and, visually,their rules have to do with what a person wants to wear andwhat makes him feel bigger than life," she says. DirectorsSpeck and Gordon were also very specific about how theywanted the characters to look, which led to a fruitfulcollaboration. She adds, "Will and Josh are both very visual and they had some strong ideas about the costumes. At thesame time, they gave me so much freedom." It also helped that the film's two leading men broughtsuch enthusiasm to wearing the outfits she created for them."Both Will and Jon know how to wear costumes," she explains."Anybody who could dress like a peacock [as Heder does in hisfirst solo routine], complete with tail feathers, and strutaround in it with such aplomb that other people wanted to tryit on ... that makes my job easier. And Will was so excited toget into his one-piece suit with red and orange crystalflames going up the side [for his first duet with Heder]-ithad a back so low that, to put it mildly, it was quiterisqu," she laughs. Stiller adds, "Will has quite a physique in the film and he really worked at it. You know, he really had the attitudethat he doesn't fit into the costume, the costume fits intohim. And by that, he meant, `Look, I'm gonna show up. I'mgonna do my workout. I'm gonna be in the shape I'm in. Thecostume's gonna be in the shape it's in. I'm gonna slip intoit ... we'll see what happens.'" The other characters were no less committed to the costumes Weiss fashioned for them. "Amy Poehler put on thischandelier dress and wore it like something she would haveproudly worn to her prom," says Weiss. "And both Will Arnett and Amy donned these `rap' outfits [for their Nationals routine in competition against Chazz and Jimmy] made out of denim and leather with gold stenciling, which they wore with great joy and power. They felt like a million bucks." Costume houses like Bill Hargate, Ray Aghayan and BobMackie helped construct the elaborate-and often bejeweled-costumes Weiss created. Reinforcing the grandeur of the costumes was the musical accompaniment in the skating routines-which, as anyone who has ever watched figure skating competitions knows, is asmuch a part of the mood of the event as the costumes and theskating are. The performers in "Blades of Glory" skate to awide range of music, everything from The Strokes, toAerosmith, to Marky Mark and Queen. "Music plays such an important part in this film," saysmusic supervisor George Drakoulias. "Of course, theselections are meant not only to provide humor, but also tellyou about the characters. Chazz is a rock star, and Jimmy isall about orchestral pieces. Their first duet is to Queen'stheme to `Flash Gordon,' which combines both. You see andhear that they are a pair." Composer Theodore Shapiro was charged with scoring thefilm, providing musical accompaniment to "Blades of Glory's"on-screen antics. Cornfeld notes, "It isn't so much aboutsounding funny as it is punching up what's funny on thescreen." And what would a sports film be without its own theme?Would the Super Bowl be the same without "The Super Bowl Shuffle"? A Lakers game without Randy Newman's "I LoveL.A."? Any game without "We Will Rock You" and "We Are theChampions"? No, absolutely not ... so rocker Bo Bice-"AmericanIdol" runner-up and national favorite-provides a rousing anthem aptly entitled "Blades of Glory." Sweet. ***
While filmmakers, cast and crew set about to make afunny movie about skating, all were also hoping for somethinga bit more. Cornfeld says their mission was also to "capturethat world. We hope it will also appeal to sports fans, because it demonstrates what skating is all about-not onlythe spectacle and the competition, but the real talent andathleticism involved in pulling it off." "Even as you're laughing your head off," says directorSpeck, "you will be admiring the blood, sweat and tears thatgoes into figure skating." Gordon sums it up: "For us, `Blades of Glory' is equalpart comedy spoof and realistic sports movie. We hope thatwe paid homage to the athletes and performers who do it for aliving."
ABOUT THE CAST
WILL FERRELL (Chazz Michael Michaels) has come a longway since his days on "Saturday Night Live," crossing overfrom television icon to motion picture star shortly afterjoining the "SNL" cast in 1995. Recently, in demonstrating that his dramatic gifts equal his comedic talents, Ferrell earned his second Golden Globenomination (Best Actor in a Comedy or Musical) for hisportrayal of IRS agent Harold Crick in last year's "StrangerThan Fiction," starring opposite Emma Thompson, DustinHoffman, Queen Latifah and Maggie Gyllenhaal for directorMarc Forester. Last summer, Ferrell starred in the hit comedy "TalladegaNights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby" with co-stars John C. Reilly and Sacha Baron Cohen. Earning nearly $150 million atthe U.S. box office, the film became the season's #1 comedy(non-animated) and continues to set records on DVD. In the summer of 2004, Ferrell starred in the comedy"Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy" for DreamWorksPictures, which grossed over $85 million domestically.Ferrell co-wrote the script with "SNL" writer Adam McKay.Judd Apatow (Freaks and Geeks) produced, with David O.Russell ("Three Kings") executive producing. Ferrellportrayed Ron Burgundy, a 1970s anchorman with an inflated ego threatened by the arrival of an ambitious femalenewscaster who, unlike him, has mastered journalism. Ferrell completed his seventh and final season on thelegendary NBC late-night hit "Saturday Night Live" in 2002,having taken the nation by storm during "Indecision 2000" byimpersonating President George W. Bush on the show. Some ofhis most memorable "SNL" characters include Craig the SpartanCheerleader, musical middle school teacher Marty Culp, andTom Wilkins, the hyperactive co-host of "Morning Latte."Among his many cross-gender impressions are Janet Reno, AlexTrebek, Neil Diamond and the late, great Chicago Cubssportscaster Harry Caray. His work on "SNL" earned two Emmynominations in 2001 (Outstanding Individual Performance in aVariety or Music Program, and Outstanding Writing for aVariety, Music or Comedy Program). Ferrell is currently in production for New Line Cinemaon the basketball comedy "Semi-Pro," set in the last year ofthe now-defunct American Basketball Association. Previousfilm credits include "Zoolander," "Elf," the Woody Allenfeature "Melinda and Melinda," the comedies "Bewitched" and"Old School," and the screen adaptation of "The Producers,"which earned Ferrell his first Golden Globe nomination in2006 for Best Supporting Actor. Raised in Irvine, California, Ferrell attended USC andgraduated with a degree in sports information. Upongraduation, he worked as a sportscaster on a weekly show broadcast over a local cable channel. Soon after, heenrolled in acting classes and stand-up comedy workshops at anearby community college and was eventually asked to join theesteemed comedy/improv group The Groundlings after just oneyear of training. It was at The Groundlings that Ferrell wasdiscovered for "Saturday Night Live." JON HEDER (Jimmy MacElroy) is perhaps most widelyrecognized for his critically acclaimed performance as thetitle character in the independent hit for Fox Searchlight,"Napoleon Dynamite." The film premiered at the 2004 SundanceFilm Festival and was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize.What resulted was a major bidding war that saw Fox Searchlight and MTV Films partner up to distribute a filmthat has grossed over $40 million domestically since its release, as well as becoming a top-selling DVD. Heder's portrayal as an alienated teen helping his new friend win theclass presidency in their small town high school (while alsodealing with his bizarre family at home) has practically certified Heder with cult icon status. "Napoleon Dynamite" was also named Best Feature Film atthe 2004 U.S. Comedy Arts Festival and has garnered severaladditional awards for Heder. In the 2005 MTV Movie Awards,Heder went home having won Best Musical Performance for the"Election Dance," as well as the award for Breakthrough Male;the movie also won for Best Movie. Heder was also nominatedfor a Teen Choice award for Choice Movie Actor in a Comedy,while the film was nominated for Choice Movie. Next up for Heder is the recently-wrapped feature"Mama's Boy," in which he stars opposite Diane Keaton, aswell as the animated feature for Columbia Pictures due outthis summer, "Surf's Up." Most recently, Heder was seen in "School for Scoundrels," opposite Billy Bob Thornton for director ToddPhillips. He also starred in the broad comedy "TheBenchwarmers," with Rob Schneider and David Spade, which follows three athletically-challenged men who form a baseballteam of misfits when they are challenged by the localelementary school bullies. Late last year, it was announced that Heder, along withhis twin brother Dan and older brother Doug, have formed production company Greasy Entertainment, with a first-lookdeal at Universal Pictures. The company has begun developingprojects that include star vehicles for Heder, as well asanimation properties. The company is the actualization of along-held goal for the brothers, each of whom studied film atBrigham Young University (Heder holds a degree in computeranimation). He has acted in several student productions andwas the lead in the award-winning short film "Peluca," whichwas written and directed by "Napoleon Dynamite" helmer, JaredHess. Heder's previous film credits include "Just Like Heaven"with Reese Witherspoon and Mark Ruffalo, and the animatedfeature "Monster House." Raised in Salem, Oregon, in a family of six children,Heder recently relocated to Los Angeles with his wife. WILL ARNETT (Stranz Van Waldenberg) has been anextremely busy man of late. Following "Blades of Glory," hewill be seen in Bob Odenkirk's "The Brothers Solomon" forScreen Gems, the ensemble comedy "Hot Rod," and will then re-team with Will Ferrell in "Semi-Pro." Arnett recently lenthis voice to the 20th Century Fox animated sequel "Ice Age 2:The Meltdown," and also co-starred opposite Robin Williams in"RV," the family road trip comedy directed by BarrySonnenfeld. Arnett was most recently seen in "Let's Go to Prison"with Dax Shepard and Chi McBride. Upcoming for Arnett, he iscurrently attached to star in "Most Likely to Succeed" forUniversal, "Dad Can't Lose" and "Get `Em Wet" for Paramount,as well as "The Ambassador" for DreamWorks and Paramount,which he will also executive-produce. Arnett recently earned his first Emmy nomination for his work on the critically acclaimed Fox sitcom "ArrestedDevelopment," where he portrayed Gob Bluth. The show alsogarnered an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Comedy Series forits final season. The series previously earned a Golden Globe nomination and won an Emmy for Outstanding ComedySeries in its first season. The show also gained a cult-likefollowing of loyal fans. Before "Arrested Development," Arnett was a regular onthe NBC comedy series "The Mike O'Malley Show." Hisadditional television credits include guest-starring roles on"Sex and the City," "The Sopranos," "Boston Public," "ThirdWatch" and "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit." Arnett alsoguest-starred on NBC's "Will & Grace," playing Jack's dancenemesis while auditioning to become a backup dancer for JanetJackson. Arnett's feature credits include roles in "Monster-In-Law," "The Waiting Game," "The Broken Giant," "Southie" and"Ed's Next Move." Additionally, he served as the narratorfor the film "Series 7: The Contenders" and can be heard in avariety of commercials, most notably as the voice of GMC Trucks. Arnett currently splits his residency between LosAngeles and New York, where he lives with his wife, actressand "Saturday Night Live" star Amy Poehler. AMY POEHLER (Fairchild Van Waldenberg) is in her sixthseason on "Saturday Night Live" and her third as the co-anchor of "Weekend Update." 2007 will also be the year thatPoehler hits the big screen with several feature films. Inaddition to "Blades of Glory," Poehler will star in both NewLine Cinema's "Mr. Woodcock" opposite Billy Bob Thornton andSeann William Scott, and the Warner Bros. comedy "Spring Breakdown," opposite Parker Posey. May 18th, 2007 will seePoehler lend her voice to the successful "Shrek" saga, when"Shrek the Third," comes out. She will also appear in "FastTrack" with Zach Braff, Jason Bateman and Amanda Peet, and"Southland Tales" for director Richard Kelly ("DonnieDarko"). Renowned as "a brilliantly inventive sketch comedian"(Entertainment Weekly, 11/19/05), Poehler boasts animpressive arsenal of outrageous characters, from thehyperactive Caitlin and one-legged reality show contestantAmber to a manic host of "Good Morning Meth." Poehler hasalso contributed memorable impressions of Kelly Ripa, AvrilLavigne, Sharon Osbourne, Paula Abdul, Senator HillaryClinton, Sharon Stone and Michael Jackson. Poehler joined the "SNL" cast from the Upright CitizensBrigade, a sketch/improv troupe originally formed in Chicago.Poehler and the U.C.B. relocated to New York, where they hada sketch show on Comedy Central for three seasons on whichshe was both a writer and performer. In addition, theyopened a theater currently regarded as the premieresketch/improv comedy venue in New York City. Poehler and the U.C.B. were featured in "A.S.S.S.S.C.A.T.: Improv," animprovised comedy special on Bravo. Other feature credits include in the hit comedy "MeanGirls," opposite Lindsay Lohan and Tina Fey; "Tenacious D inThe Pick of Destiny," with Jack Black; "Deuce Bigalow: MaleGigolo"; "Wet Hot American Summer"; and "Envy." Poehler has made memorable appearances on television,ranging from "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" (as recurringcharacter Stacey, Andy Richter's little sister), "ArrestedDevelopment" (playing the wife to real-life husband Will Arnett), "Wonder Showzen" and "Undeclared." She also was avoice on "O'Grady" and "The Simpsons." Poehler is married to actor Will Arnett and lives in New York City. The multi-talented CRAIG T. NELSON (Coach) starred recently with Sarah Jessica Parker and Diane Keaton in Fox's"The Family Stone," portraying the Stone patriarch in thisromantic comedy revolving around the annual holiday gatheringof a bohemian family. In 2004 audiences got to "hear" a newside of the man. He voiced Bob Parr or, as he was known inhis superhero days, Mr. Incredible, in the Oscar®-winning andDVD bestseller Walt Disney Pictures/ Pixar Animation Studios'"The Incredibles." Nelson starred as Jack Mannion on CBS-TV's "TheDistrict," a drama that was inspired by the experiences ofreal-life police crime fighter Jack Maple. Mannion was anequal opportunity antagonist and champion of the underdog whobecame the new Police Chief of Washington, D.C., a city indesperate need of a shakedown. "The District" aired for fourseasons, 2000-2004, and Nelson also served as co-executiveproducer and directed multiple episodes. In 1997, he completed his eighth and final season on"Coach," starring as Hayden Fox. He directed numerousepisodes and received three Emmy nominations: 1990, 1991 and1992 for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, which ledto a win for the 1991-1992 season. He has also been honoredby the Hollywood Foreign Press Association with four GoldenGlobe nominations. Upon completion of his successful series "Coach," Nelson had a chance to vary his projects, including making hisBroadway debut as Nat Miller in Eugene O'Neill's "Ah,Wilderness!" at the Vivian Beaumont Theater/Lincoln Center,in the spring of 1998. The show played to rave reviewsduring its limited run. Nelson was born in Spokane, Washington, on April 4. Hehas always been interested in music, playing drums and guitarthrough high school and college. He attended the Universityof Arizona and studied at the Oxford Theater in Los Angeles. Beginning his career as a writer/performer on the"Lohman and Barkley Show," his talent as a writer garneredhim a Los Angeles Emmy Award for the show. Nelson's writingcredits include "The Alan King Special" and "The Tim ConwayShow." He guested on "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" and"Private Benjamin," and starred in ABC-TV's criticallyacclaimed series "Call to Glory," directing its finalepisode. His television movies include Showtime's award-winning"Dirty Pictures," NBC's "Take Me Home Again" with KirkDouglas , "Rage," "Toast of Manhattan," "Alex: The Life of aChild," CBS's "The Switch" and "The Fire Next Time" and HBO's"The Josephine Baker Story." Mini-series include NBC's "ToServe and Protect" and ABC's "Creature." He also co-hostedwith Paula Zahn on the CBS special "The Ultimate Driving Challenge." Combining his talent for writing, directing, producingand performing, Nelson formed Family Tree Productions to develop and produce motion picture and television projects,including "Ride with the Wind." The ABC movie of the weekwas scripted by Nelson, who also served as executiveproducer. Craig T. Nelson/Family Tree Productions acquiredthe rights to several projects, including that of the lifeand times of five-time land speed record holder CraigBreedlove, with Nelson planning to pen and executive-producethe project. His additional feature film credits include: "The Skulls," "All Over Again," "Devil's Advocate," "Ghosts ofMississippi," "I'm Not Rappaport," "Poltergeist " and "Poltergeist II -The Other Side" (he contributed to the screenplay), "Action Jackson," "The Killing Fields,""Silkwood" and "The Osterman Weekend." Outside of show business, Nelson is also an accomplished race car driver and avid, champion golfer. Nelson has threechildren and six grandchildren. He and his wife, Doria, maketheir home in Los Angeles. JENNA FISCHER (Katie Van Waldenberg) is one of the funniest people you may not have heard of. This fall shereturned to the critically acclaimed NBC comedy "The Office,"playing Pam Beesly, the receptionist at Dunder Mifflin papersupply company. The show, which has built steadily inratings, recently won the 2006 Emmy for Best Comedy Seriesand is now a permanent staple on the NBC Thursday night line-up. Fischer recently completed a role in "Quebec," a comedyfor Dimension Films, co-starring Seann William Scott and John C. Reilly. Upcoming for Fischer is a starring role in theJake Kasdan-directed "Walk Hard," opposite John C. Reilly. Fischer is no stranger to television. Her credits include guest-starring roles on "Six Feet Under," "That `70sShow," "Cold Case," "Miss Match," "Strong Medicine," "What ILike About You," "Off Centre," "Undeclared" and "Spin City."Her feature film credits include "Employee of the Month,""Lucky 13" and "The Specials." She also completed a role inthe horror movie "Slither," which was released by UniversalPictures in January 2006. Fischer recently wrote and directed the feature film"LolliLove," starring herself, Linda Cardellini (NBC's "ER"),Judy Greer and her husband, James Gunn. As a result, Fischerwas awarded the Screen Actors Guild Emerging Actor Award atlast year's St. Louis Film Festival. In addition, she received the Tromadance Independent Soul Award at theAmerican Film Market. "LolliLove" was recently released onDVD. Fischer was raised in St. Louis, Missouri, where, at the age of five, she took her first acting class with Sean Gunn(Kirk on the "Gilmore Girls"). Gunn and Fischer stayed intouch over the years and in October 2000, she married hisbrother -- writer/director James Gunn. Much like her "Office" character Pam, Fischer has atalent for administrative work and toiled for many years asboth a receptionist and administrative assistant. She cantype 85 words-per-minute with 90-percent accuracy. A former volunteer with the animal rescue organizationKitten Rescue as a foster parent for sick and injured cats,Fischer has a passion for animals. She currently lives inLos Angeles with her husband, their dog Wesley and cat Andy. WILLIAM FICHTNER (Darren MacElroy), an actor ofextensive talent and range, was recently seen on the big screen in the Academy Award®-winning film "Crash," fromwriter-director Paul Haggis, for which he won a Screen ActorsGuild Award for Best Ensemble Cast in a Feature Film. Lastsummer, he also starred opposite Adam Sandler and Chris Rockin the remake of the comedy "The Longest Yard." Segueingeffortlessly between television and feature films, Fichtnerwas recently seen in HBO's critically acclaimed "EmpireFalls," opposite Paul Newman and Ed Harris. Fichtner's othertelevision roles include NBC's "The West Wing" and ABC's "MDs." Currently, Fichtner plays the role of FBI AgentAlexander Mahone on Fox's hit drama series "Prison Break."His character is as brilliant as the escaped convicts LincolnBurrows (Dominic Purcell) and Michael Scofield (Wentworth Miller), but as the plot unfolds during the season, viewerslearn that he is haunted by his own demons. Fichtner will next be seen in the comedy "The Amateurs," opposite Jeff Bridges and Ted Danson, as well as theindependent film "First Snow," with Guy Pearce. Fichtner had two films premiere at the 2005 SundanceFilm Festival -- Rodrigo Garcia's "Nine Lives" and DreamWorks'"The Chumscrubber." Fichtner's additional film creditsinclude Ridley Scott's "Black Hawk Down," "What's The WorstThing That Could Happen?," Wolfgang Petersen's "The PerfectStorm," "Drowning Mona," "Ultraviolet" for writer-directorKurt Wimmer, "Passion of Mind," "Armageddon," Michael Mann's"Heat," "Contact," Doug Liman's "Go," Steven Soderbergh's"The Underneath," Agnieszka Holland's "Julie Walking Home,""Equilibrium," "The Settlement" alongside John C. Reilly, andKevin Spacey's directorial debut "Albino Alligator." As a member of the Circle Repertory Theatre, Fichtnerwon critical acclaim for his role in "The Fiery Furnace,"directed by Norman Rene. He has also appeared on the stagein "Raft of the Medusa" at the Minetta Lane Theatre, "TheYears" at the Manhattan Theatre Club, "Clothes for a SummerHotel" at the Williamstown Theatre Festival and "Machinal" atThe Public Theatre. Fichtner currently resides in Los Angeles. ROMANY MALCO (Jesse) was most recently seen on the bigscreen in the surprise hit "The 40 Year-Old Virgin," oppositeSteve Carrell, Catherine Keener, Paul Rudd and Seth Rogan.His role in that film brought him two 2006 MTV Movie Awardnominations-for Best Breakthrough Performance and Best On-Screen Team. He can currently been seen on the hit Showtimeseries "Weeds," starring as Conrad Shepard-his work in theseries brought him an Image Award nomination and a shared SAG nomination for this year's Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series. Prior to that, Malco also co-starred in the independent film "Churchill: The Hollywood Years," opposite Neve Campbelland Christian Slater, and in the action comedy "The Tuxedo,"opposite Jackie Chan and Jennifer Love Hewitt. His otherfeature film credits include Jesse Peretz's comedy "TheChâteau," opposite his "Virgin" cast mate Paul Rudd, and "ThePrime Gig." Malco began his career at the age of seven, when hepicked up a microphone and started rapping, calling himselfKid Nice. As a teen, he formed the rap group R.M.G. and moved to Los Angeles, where they were signed to a record dealby Virgin Records and changed their name to College Boyz.Their first big hit, "Victim of the Ghetto," went to #1 onthe rap charts. Originally from Baytown, Texas, Malco was working as amusic producer on the feature comedy "The Pest," starringJohn Leguizamo, when the actor, impressed by Malco's gift ofgab, encouraged him to pursue acting. Malco's rapping background came in handy when he landedthe lead in the VH-1 telepic "Too Legit: The MC HammerStory." NICK SWARDSON (Hector) started performing stand-up comedy in 1996 at the age of 19. Within his first year ofstand-up, he performed at the U.S. Comedy Arts Festival asone of the top new comedians in the country. In 2000, at the age of 22, Nick reached his biggestachievement in stand-up, when he was given his own half-hourcomedy special on Comedy Central, which became one of thehighest-rated specials to air on the channel. He relocatedto Los Angeles and soon made appearances on "The Tonight Show," "Late Night with Conan O'Brien," "The Late Late Show"and "Jimmy Kimmel Live." In the summer of 2003, Swardson hit another milestonewhen a script he wrote with Jamie Kennedy-"Malibu's Most Wanted"-was green lit by Warner Bros.; the movie went on totriple its cost at the box office. Since that time, Nick has continued to develop, writeand star in a variety of projects for some of the business'leading production entities, including Adam Sandler and hisHappy Madison Productions; Swardson starred in, co-wrote andco-produced the comedy "Grandma's Boy." He also co-starredand co-produced "The Benchwarmers," starring Rob Schneider,David Spade, Jon Heder and Jon Lovitz, co-writing the projectwith Sandler and Allen Covert. Swardson also developed his own show for Comedy Centralcalled "Gay Robot," and wrote and performed another highly-rated half-hour installment of "Comedy Central Presents." Swardson has also starred in a recurring role on ComedyCentral's hit "Reno 911!" as the flamboyant Terry Bernedino,and will reprise his role in the upcoming feature film "Reno911!: Miami." His additional feature film credits include"Art School Confidential" and "Click." ROB CORDDRY (Bryce) was a regular on "The Daily Showwith Jon Stewart" from 2002 through September 2006 as apolitical correspondent. He has also appeared on episodes of"Curb Your Enthusiasm," "Arrested Development," "Late Nightwith Conan O'Brien" and "Upright Citizens Bridgade." In addition to "Blades of Glory," Corddry will be seenin "The Pleasure of Your Company," a comedy starring JasonBiggs and Isla Fisher; "The Ten," featuring an ensemble castincluding Jessica Alba, Famke Janssen and Amanda Peet;"Patriotville," with Justin Long for director Talmage Cooley; and the Untitled Farrelly Brothers Project, with BenStiller for directors Peter and Bobby Farrelly. Corddry previously starred as Bobby Dukes in the indiecomedy "BlackBalled: The Bobby Dukes Story." He alsoappeared in Todd Phillips' hit comedy "Old School," with WillFerrell and Vince Vaughn, and Tom Dey's "Failure to Launch,"starring Matthew McConaughey and Sarah Jessica Parker. Robis also the star of his own Fox television series, "TheWinner," from writer/producers Seth McFarlane and RickyBlitt, which debuts just about any moment. Clearly one of the most popular figure skating stars inthe world today, SCOTT HAMILTON (Sports Anchor) is a rolemodel, a humanitarian and a cancer survivor. As a figureskater, he is forever bridging the gap between sport and entertainment. As a role model, he contradicts the sayingthat "good guys finish last." As a humanitarian, he availshimself to any plight that will improve mankind. And as acancer survivor, he is a constant reminder that withdetermination, anything is possible. Scott recently hosted and served as the consulting producer for the Fox Television Network's 2006 primetime television series "Skating With Celebrities." He also servedas the NBC lead analyst for the 2006 Winter Olympics inTurin, Italy. He is a spokesperson for Target House at St.Jude Children's Research Hospital; is a member of the Boardof Directors for Special Olympics; and in 1999, he established the Scott Hamilton CARES (Cancer Alliance forResearch, Education and Survivorshop) at the Cleveland ClinicTaussig Cancer Center. Scott is a much sought after on-air personality,motivational speaker and corporate spokesman. Since 1986,audiences have seen him perform in his own Scott Hamilton's America Tour; with numerous U.S. symphony orchestras; and 15national touring seasons in "Stars on Ice," which he also co-created and for which he served and still serves as co-producer. As the winner of 16 consecutive championships after the1980 Winter Olympics, Scott was heavily favored to take thegold medal at the 1984 Olympic Games in Sarajevo ... and thatis precisely what he did. A month later, he went on to scorea stunning victory at the World Championships in Ottawa, Canada. To add to a remarkable list of achievements that nowincludes more than 70 titles, awards and honors, Scott wasinducted into the United States Olympic Hall of Fame in Julyof 1990. Setting a precedent as the first star in ice skatinghistory to combine skating, acting, singing and dancing inone stage production, he has successfully segued intoproducing for television and has co-produced not only his owntelevision special-the 1996 Emmy Award-winning "Disney's Scott Hamilton... Upside Down" (CBS)-but the 1997 CBS holidayhit "Snowden on Ice" and its 1998 Emmy Award-winning sequel,"The Snowden, Raggedy Ann & Andy Holiday Special" (CBS). In1998, Scott also produced Olympic Champion Tara Lipinski'sfirst network special for CBS, "Tara Lipinski ... From ThisMoment On." In 2002, he produced "Scott Hamilton & Friends"with special guest stars Susan Anton and Jack Mack & The Heart Attack (which aired on NBC), and in October 2003produced an all-new "Scott Hamilton & Friends" with specialguest stars Michael Feinstein and Darlene Love (which airedJanuary 11, 2004, also on NBC). During early summer of 2005,the special received an Emmy Award nomination for OutstandingVariety Special. Scott received notable critical praise for the writingof his autobiography Landing It ... My Life On and Off the Ice (Kensington Books, October 1999), an intimate, candid andinsightful look at his professional and personal life on andoff the ice. During the summer of 1999, he made his feature motionpicture acting debut in "On Edge," starring Jason Alexander,Kathy Griffin and Wendie Malick, a hilarious mockumentary offigure skating in which Scott portrays Ricky Metford, afrenzied, offbeat former coach and judge. He later created acharacter voice for a segment of the popular animatedtelevision series "King of the Hill," and appeared as aspecial guest star in a 2003 television pilot, "Hench at Home," written and produced by popular actor Michael J. Fox. Scott continues to appear regularly on varioustelevision talk shows, national news shows and variety shows.During a 14-year tenure with the CBS Television Network asone of their most articulate sports analysts, Scott'scoverage of the figure skating competition at the 1998 WinterOlympic Games in Nagano, Japan, the 1994 Olympic Games inLillehammer, Norway and the 1992 Games in Albertville, Francewas heralded as incisive, exuberant and refreshing. Scott lives in Franklin, Tennessee, with his wife, Tracie, and their son, Aidan. NANCY KERRIGAN (Attractive Official) is a two-time Olympic figure skating medalist, mother of two sons (ages oneand nine) and a member of Mothers Who Make a Difference. Shewas named an "Outstanding Mother of the Year" in 2001 by theNational Mother's Day Council. Nancy first came to prominence when the United Statesteam scored a medal sweep in the ladies' event in the 1991World Figure Skating Championships, where she received thebronze medal. Her career headed steadily upward from there,as she received a bronze medal in the 1992 Winter Olympics, and the silver medal at the 1992 World Championships. In1993, Nancy became United States Champion. In 1994,following the attack on her in Detroit at the U.S. NationalChampionships, Kerrigan made a courageous comeback to finishas the silver medalist in one of the closest Olympiccompetitions in history. The event was the third most-watched sports event ever, making Kerrigan a household name. Kerrigan turned her attention to exhibitions, shows andcorporate endorsements after the Olympics. Nancy toured for10 years with "Champions on Ice" and performed in dozens oflive and made-for-television shows, including Disney's"Dreams on Ice," Feld Entertainment's "Grease on Ice,"StarGames' production of "Footloose on Ice" and her own show,"Halloween on Ice," which is now in its 11th year. Shecreated The Nancy Kerrigan Foundation to raise awareness andsupport for the vision-impaired in honor of her mother, andhas authored two books on skating, including Artistry on Ice,an instructional work published by Human Kinetics. More recently, in addition to her role as wife and mother of two, Kerrigan appeared in the 2006 FOX televisionprogram "Skating with Celebrities" and served as a correspondent for "The Insider" at the Turin Winter Olympics.She also currently hosts her own television show, "Nancy Kerrigan's World of Skating," on Comcast's CN8. Few athletes have enjoyed the artistic and popular success that figure skater BRIAN BOITANO (Federation Judge)has achieved since winning the gold medal for the United States at the 1988 Winter Olympics Games in Calgary, Canada. After the Olympics, Brian continued skating and touringwith fellow Olympic gold medalist Katarina Witt in three successful ice shows, which he created: "Skating," "SkatingII" and "Skating '92." In 1994, he starred in "Nutcracker on Ice" with Oksana Baiul and Victor Petrenko. For 15 years hetoured with Champions on Ice around the country, headlining25 national tours. On television, Brian was awarded an Emmy for hisstarring role in the HBO movie "Carmen on Ice." Brian hasalso provided expert commentary on televised skating showsfor ABC, NBC and Turner networks. Brian was an Olympic alternate in 1980 and a member ofthe `84, `88 and `94 U.S. Olympic teams. After turningprofessional in 1988, Brian won six world professionaltitles, placing first and scoring perfect 10's in each of tenconsecutive professional championships. As a professional,he won the first 20 out of the 24 competitions he entered, arecord unmatched in the history of skating In total, Brian has won more than 50 titles, including23 international gold medals, two World titles, two Pro/AMtitles, 16 professional titles, four U.S. National titles, aswell as the Olympic gold medal. Boitano has been inductedinto the World Figure Skating Hall of Fame, the U.S. FigureSkating Hall of Fame and the National Italian-American Hallof Fame. Brian's book, Boitano's Edge: Inside the Real World ofFigure Skating (Simon & Schuster, November 1997), iscurrently in its third printing and is considered one of thefinest skating books ever published. When 19-year-old figure skater DOROTHY HAMILL(Federation Judge) won her gold medal at the 1976 Winter Games in Innsbruck, Austria, not only did she capture thegold, she also transcended the sport and captured the world'simagination. Not satisfied with Olympic gold, Dorothy wenton to win the World Championship title in Gothenburg, Sweden. As a professional, Dorothy has skated with manyproductions, including eight years with the company shehelped bring to preeminence among touring ice shows, the IceCapades. She had an unprecedented four ABC television primetime specials produced in her honor. Along with winning fiveconsecutive World Professional titles, Dorothy has producedand starred in her own touring productions of "Cinderella --Frozen in Time," "Hansel, Gretel, the Witch and the Cat" and"Nutcracker on Ice" and won an Emmy for her starring role in"Romeo and Juliet." Dorothy was inducted into the OlympicHall of Fame and the Figure Skating Hall of Fame and was veryproud to run the torch into the Olympic Stadium in Salt LakeCity with her friend Dick Button, as well as skate theclosing ceremonies with vocalist Harry Connick, Jr. Inaddition to her skating roles, Dorothy was the firstrecipient of the Stars of Madison Avenue Award for hercontinued roles in successful advertising campaigns. Recently, Dorothy served as a judge on "Skating withCelebrities" on FOX TV, which aired during prime timebeginning Winter 2006. She continues to tour with "Championson Ice" and "Broadway on Ice" throughout the country. When PEGGY FLEMING (Federation Judge) first beganskating as a nine year-old girl, she had no way of knowingthen that she would soon shoulder much of the responsibilityfor keeping the sport of figure skating alive in thiscountry. Two years later, in 1961, the entire United States Figure Skating team (including Peggy's coach) were killed ina plane crash on their way to the Prague World Championships.With all of her role models gone, it would be up to her tocreate an image of style and grace that would carry her to five U.S. Titles, three World Titles and, in 1968, to an Olympic gold medal. ABC televised the 1968 Winter Games live and in colorfor the first time ever, and the enduring image from thatcoverage will always be of Peggy's free-skating program. Itwas a program that won her the gold medal by 88.2 points overher closest competitor, and it would be the only gold medalthe United States brought home from Grenoble. Six months after those Olympics, Peggy would star in the first of five TV specials. Her "Sun Valley Special" won twoEmmy Awards, and in 1973 her fourth special became the firstjoint production by Soviets and Americans filmed entirely inthe USSR. Her career has continued to expand, not only intelevision appearances ranging from "Diagnosis Murder" and"Newhart" to hosting a special on poaching in East Africa,but also into commercial endorsements. She has been invitedto the White House by four different administrations, and, in1980, was the first skater ever invited to perform there.The 1986 unveiling of the Statue of Liberty was a nationalcelebration and again Peggy was asked to perform. She wasalso one of the honored athletes to carry the Olympic flameinto the 2002 Opening Ceremonies in Salt Lake City. In 1999, Peggy was honored at the Sports Illustrated 20th Century Awards. She was in an elite group of seven named "Athletes Who Changed the Game," which included ArnoldPalmer, Billie Jean King and Jackie Robinson. Since 1981, Peggy's career as an on-air analyst for ABCSports has taken her to national, world and Olympiccompetitions, and she continues to provide warm andknowledgeable commentary to an ever-growing audience.Of course, her primary source of balance and joy has alwaysbeen her family. In 1970 she married dermatologist, Dr. GregJenkins. They live in the San Francisco Bay Area and have two sons, Andy and Todd. Peggy is also a proud grandmother tothree grandsons. In the 2005-2006 competitive skating season, 21-year-oldSASHA COHEN (Sasha Cohen) won the Olympic silver medal,triumphed in her first U.S. National Championships andcaptured the bronze medal at the World Championships. She has placed among the Top Three in 20 consecutivecompetitions since 2003. Cohen now has three World medals --two silvers and one bronze, in addition to the Olympicsilver, one U.S. title and four U.S. silver medals. While skating success helped her attract the attentionof corporate America and producers, her model-like appearanceand polished public presentation make her one of the mostmarketable celebrity athletes in the world, and one of themost popular; Sasha is among the top 10 female athletes inall sports in the U.S., according to an online HarrisInteractive Poll conducted in May 2006. Her public career began when photographer Mario Sorrenti spotted the young athlete skating at a rink in New York Cityand invited her to pose for a high-fashion layout in New Yorkfor French V magazine. Since then, Cohen has been featuredin Vogue and Seventeen, among others. She was a model forthe Wilhelmina agency. She has been featured in commercials and public serviceannouncements, including the Citizen Watch Eco-Drive model.Her "Got Milk?" commercial launched a new Web site featuringher as a role model for younger women and girls. Herautobiography Fire On Ice sold out in hardback and paperback.The multi-talented rising star's credits include "MoondanceAlexander," now in post-production, and the teen-oriented"Bratz." In TV, she has appeared on "Las Vegas," "CSI: NewYork" and "Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards '06." She lives in Corona Del Mar, California. The skater isvery involved in charity work. She participated in the NewYork Cares coat drive in January, and she has been invited tojoin the Board of Directors of Figure Skating in Harlem, which provides public schoolgirls with after-school wintersports activities.
ABOUT THE FILMMAKERS WILL SPECK & JOSH GORDON (Directors) have been directing since they met in the New York University / Tisch School ofthe Arts undergraduate film program (1991 - 1995). Their senior thesis film "Idyllwild" (which they wroteand directed together) was a Finalist for the 1994 StudentAcademy Award. "Idyllwild" was also awarded in numerous filmfestivals. Post-graduation, they wrote and directed another shortfilm, "Culture," which was nominated in the live action shortfilm category at the 1999 Academy Awards®. "Culture" alsowon the Silver Hugo at the Chicago Film Festival, as well asthe Fade-In Magazine Best Short Screenplay Award in 1998. Shortly thereafter, they joined the DGA as a joint directing team to pursue directing commercials through Ridleyand Tony Scott's RSA/USA Productions (Tony Scott was asignature on their original application for membership in1998-99). The team then sold a script to Twentieth CenturyFox Television, with them attached to direct. During a seven-year run as commercial directors, Speckand Gordon's work has been widely respected, having receivedan impressive array of recognition: a 2003 Clio for acampaign for Sears; inclusion in 2005's Communication ArtsBest in Advertising; an award honoring excellence inTalent/Performance from the Association of IndependentCommercial Producers in 2003 for Budweiser, and an additionalone for Talent/Performance in 2005 for Geico; gold, silverand bronze Arrows from the British Television AdvertisingAwards for their work on Levi's in 2004; a pencil in the one-show for Geico, 2005; and the ABA 50 for 2004, Levi's. Theircommercial work has been short-listed at the Cannes Film Festival three years running (2003-2005) and two of their spots are in the permanent collection of "Excellence inAdvertising" in the Museum of Modern Art. They have directed consistently, creating well-regardedwork for a wide range of clients, including Pepsi, IKEA, Budweiser, Sears, Geico, Sega, Coca-Cola, Samsung and Levi's,among others. The duo have also been highlighted in numerouspublications, including Shoot magazine ("Directors toWatch"), Boards magazine (directors spotlight) and Creativitymagazine (a profile on their work for BBH/London and Levi's).They recently sold a pilot based on the Geico cavemen to ABC,which they are currently shooting. Brothers JEFF COX & CRAIG COX (Screenwriters/Story Writers) were raised in Chicago and Phoenix. Jeff is an NYUgraduate, where he studied dramatic writing, while Craig attended acting school at DePaul University. The brothersreally irritate people when they tell them "Blades of Glory"is the first screenplay they ever wrote together. Yet, it isthe truth. Currently, they are writing a comedy about the firstOlympics in Ancient Greece for director Peter Segal andproducers Mary Parent and Scott Stuber. After graduating from the University of North Carolinaat Chapel Hill, JOHN ALTSCHULER & DAVE KRINSKY(Screenwriters) began their career in Hollywood as productionassistants. Their first writing opportunity came on the HBOshow "The High Life." When that wrapped, they were heavilyrecruited and landed on FOX's "King of the Hill," where theyhave risen to the Executive Producer/Showrunner position. Altschuler & Krinsky have received several nominationsfor Emmys and won an Environmental Media Award. In addition to their TV work, they are also developing pilots andfeatures. With her memorable performance as Kim Kelly in the critically praised series "Freaks and Geeks," actress BUSYPHILIPPS (Story Writer) crafted one of the most compellingyoung characters in contemporary television. That role leadto feature work in "Anatomy of a Hate Crime" and "Home Room,"along with a series regular role on "Dawson's Creek" and the"Freaks and Geeks" follow-up, "Undeclared." More recently,she starred in the Wayans' comedy "White Chicks" and in theUPN's "Love, Inc." She can currently be seen on "ER" as thedevout Christian intern, Hope Bobek. BEN STILLER (Producer) is an innovative actor, director, producer and writer who continues to imprint his unique comedicand dramatic perspective on film, television and stage. Herecently wrapped production on the Untitled Farrelly BrothersComedy, which re-teams Stiller with the writing/directing team ofPeter and Bobby Farrelly. Loosely inspired by the 1972 classichit "The Heartbreak Kid," the film tells the story of a man whohastily weds a woman who he thinks is perfect--until he falls inlove with another woman during the honeymoon. Michelle Monaghanand Malin Ackerman will co-star with the Farrellys' ConundrumEntertainment producing for DreamWorks. Stiller has agreed to reprise his role in "Madagascar 2." He was recently heard in theoriginal 2005 DreamWorks' animated film, along with co-starsDavid Schwimmer, Chris Rock and Jada Pinkett Smith. In the spring of 2005, Stiller completed a successfulrun off-Broadway in Neil LaBute's play "This Is How It Goes" atNew York's Public Theatre. Directed by George C. Wolfe and co-starring Jeffrey Wright and Amanda Peet, the play explores an interracial romance involving two men and a woman in small-townAmerica. Stiller was last seen on the big screen in record-breaking"Night at the Museum." Previous to that, Stiller starred in theworldwide blockbuster comedy sequel "Meet the Fockers" withRobert DeNiro, Dustin Hoffman and Barbra Streisand. Directed byJay Roach, the film introduces Stiller's in-laws to his parents,played by Hoffman and Streisand, to hilarious results. In 2004, Stiller starred in the hit comedies "Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story," "Starsky & Hutch" and "AlongCame Polly." Other films include the comedy "Zoolander," basedon the story of `Derek Zoolander,' the male model characterStiller co-created with Drake Sather for the VH-1 Fashion Awards.Stiller co-wrote, directed, starred in and also produced the filmthrough Red Hour Films with partner Stuart Cornfeld. Prior to that, Stiller starred in Jay Roach's "Meet the Parents," which won a People's Choice Award, earned Stiller an American Comedy Award for Funniest Male Performance and an MTV Movie Award for Best Comedic Performance. Additionally, he was nominated forBest On-Screen Team with Robert DeNiro. Stiller also starred inWes Anderson's eccentric comedy "The Royal Tenenbaums." Having firmly established himself as a successfulfilmmaker, Stiller has an exclusive, three-year, first-look filmand television production deal with DreamWorks, in which he willwrite, produce and direct films under his own banner, Red Hour Films. Stiller made his feature-length motion picturedirectorial debut in 1994 with the critically acclaimed "RealityBites," in which he also co-starred with Winona Ryder, Janeane Garofalo and Ethan Hawke. He went on to direct Jim Carrey and Matthew Broderick in "The Cable Guy." Stiller's film credits as an actor also include Peterand Bobby Farrelly's smash hit "There's Something About Mary," "Permanent Midnight" (based on Jerry Stahl's controversial Hollywood memoir), Neil LaBute's "Your Friends & Neighbors," JakeKasdan's "Zero Effect," David O. Russell's "Flirting WithDisaster" and Steven Spielberg's World War II epic "Empire of theSun." Stiller made his professional acting debut onBroadway in 1985 starring opposite John Mahoney in John Guare's"The House of Blue Leaves." While appearing in the play, Stillerpersuaded Mahoney and fellow cast members Swoosie Kurtz, StockardChanning and Julie Hagerty to appear in a short comedy film, hisfirst true directorial effort, "The Hustler of Money." A parodyof Martin Scorsese's "The Color of Money," the film eventually aired on "Saturday Night Live," where it was so well receivedStiller was subsequently hired as a featured player andapprentice writer for the NBC comedy series. Following his stint at "Saturday Night Live," Stillerdirected a comedy special for MTV called "Back to Brooklyn."Stiller followed that project by creating "The Ben Stiller Show,"also for MTV, and later collaborated with Judd Apatow for a 13-episode run on FOX. It was a critical success and Stiller, alongwith the rest of the writing staff, was awarded an Emmy foroutstanding comedy writing. Stiller also co-edited the photobook Looking at Los Angeles, a pictorial representation of Los Angeles from the last three-quarters of a century. The book wasranked among Amazon.com's "Best Books of 2005." STUART CORNFELD's (Producer) career includes producer,co-producer and executive producer credits on an eclecticslate of films, including "The Elephant Man," "NationalLampoon's European Vacation," "The Fly," "Wilder Napalm,""Kafka" and "Mimic." Cornfeld is Ben Stiller's producing partner at Red HourFilms. Their credits include "Zoolander," "Starsky & Hutch"and "Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story." JOHN JACOBS (Producer) is the President of SmartEntertainment and has produced a number of high-grossing films. The former President of Dawn Steel's company, SteelPictures, during the release of the hit comedy "CoolRunnings," Jacobs also previously served as the President ofAtlas Entertainment, which produced "12 Monkeys" and "City ofAngels." In 2003, he produced "Anger Management" (along withHappy Madison) for Revolution Studios and Sony Pictures, starring Adam Sandler, Jack Nicholson and Marisa Tomei. In2004, he produced "My Boss's Daughter," starring AshtonKutcher, for Dimension Films. In 2005, he produced "The Ringer" with the Farrelly brothers for Fox Searchlight; thefilm, which starred Johnny Knoxville and Brian Cox, was FoxSearchlight's most profitable movie of the year. In additionto completing "Blades of Glory," he is in pre-production on"South of the Border" for Touchstone. Jacobs has worked with some of the biggest names incomedy, including Adam Sandler, the Farrelly brothers, JohnnyKnoxville and David Zucker, among others. MARTY EWING (Executive Producer) made the transition toproducing following a long career as a production manager andassistant director. He most recently executive-produced thecomedy "She's the Man," starring Amanda Bynes; the drama "ThePrize Winner of Defiance, Ohio," starring Julianne Moore; thecomedy "Man of the House," starring Tommy Lee Jones; and thedrama "Ladder 49," starring Joaquin Phoenix and JohnTravolta. Ewing had previously been an executive producer on thecritically acclaimed family films "Holes" and "My Dog Skip."His producing credits also include serving as a co-producer on "Stealing Harvard" and "Sweet November," and associateproducer on "Almost Famous" and "The Haunting." The work of cinematographer STEFAN CZAPSKY, ASC(Director of Photography) has been seen on both the large andsmall screens for three decades; he began working as a gafferand assistant camera on feature films in the late 1970s, including "The Private Files of J. Edgar Hoover," "SittingDucks" and "Union City." Following additional work in othercapacities, including chief lighting technician, he debutedas a cinematographer on Rob Nilsson's 1985 "On the Edge,"starring Bruce Dern. He followed with work on such features as the award-winning documentary "The Thin Blue Line," the dark "Vampire'sKiss," the shattering period drama "Last Exit to Brooklyn,""Fear, Anxiety & Depression," "Flashback," "Child's Play 2,"Tim Burton's "Edward Scissorhands," "The Dark Wind," "A BriefHistory of Time," "Batman Returns" and "Prelude to a Kiss."His lensing of Burton's "Ed Wood" garnered him bestcinematography awards from the New York Film Critics Circle,the National Society of Film Critics and the film critics ofboth Los Angeles and Boston. More recently, Czapsky has filmed the children's comedy"Matilda," the big screen western "Wild Wild West" and themotion picture adaptation of the graphic novel "BulletproofMonk." STEPHEN LINEWEAVER (Production Designer) had been an art professor and painter at the Albany campus of the StateUniversity of New York before commencing his film career inNew York City as an art director on such films as JohnSayles' allegorical "The Brother From Another Planet" (1984),Martin Scorsese's "After Hours" (1985), Jonathan Demme's comedy-thriller "Something Wild" (1986) and Emile Ardolino'sblockbuster hit "Dirty Dancing" (1987). In 1988, producer/director James L. Brooks approachedthe upstate New York native about designing innovative setsfor his new TV series, "The Tracey Ullman Show," for whichLineweaver won a 1990 Emmy Award for Best Production Design.He also served as a visual consultant for Matt Groening onFOX-TV's "The Simpsons" (also a Brooks production) during itsformative years. After returning to the motion picture screen to designthe independent film "Rosalie Goes Shopping," Lineweaver hooked up with director Cameron Crowe for his 1992 drama "Singles," and re-teamed with Crowe on his Academy Award®-nominated 1996 film "Jerry Maguire." During this period, healso reunited with Brooks on his 1994 film "I'll DoAnything"; collaborated with such filmmakers as Ivan Reitmanon the hit comedy "Junior," toplining Arnold Schwarzeneggerand Danny DeVito; Michael Caton-Jones on the searing drama"This Boy's Life," starring Robert De Niro and LeonardoDiCaprio; Peter Segal on his comedy "Tommy Boy," with ChrisFarley and David Spade; and designed the hit sequel "Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls," starring Jim Carrey. Lineweaver has also designed such big screen productions as Garry Marshall's "The Other Sister," Brian Levant's "SnowDogs" and Are We There Yet?", "Caught in the Act," "City Slickers 2: The Legend of Curly's Gold," "The Girl NextDoor," "How to Kill Your Neighbor's Dog" and "Double Take." RICHARD PEARSON (Editor) most recently served as editor(along with Clare Douglas and Christopher Rouse) on Paul Greengrass' acclaimed "United 93." His work on that filmgarnered him an Academy Award® nomination for Best Achievement in Editing, along with a BAFTA win for Best Feature Film Editing and an A.C.E. nomination from theAmerican Cinema Editors. Previous to "United 93," Pearson edited the motion picture adaptation of the groundbreaking Broadway musical"Rent"; the dark ensemble comedy "A Little Trip to Heaven";and the international hit "The Bourne Supremacy" (withChristopher Rouse). Pearson also edited the jungle-setaction-adventure "The Rundown," starring The Rock and SeannWilliam Scott, and the hit sequel "Men in Black II" (witheditor Steven Weisberg). His other motion picture creditsinclude "The Score," "Drowning Mona," "Bowfinger" and"Muppets from Space." Pearson received an Emmy nomination for his work on the1998 miniseries "From the Earth to the Moon." He alsocreated the title design for the acclaimed series. Esteemed, award-winning costume designer JULIE WEISS(Costume Designer) has made a name for herself as an artistwhose designs have won recognition in every medium-stage,television and film. Weiss' work gained early acclaim when her costumes forthe lauded, original Broadway production of "The ElephantMan" garnered the Tony (the designs for the 1982 televisionadaptation netted Weiss her first of seven Emmy nominations).Weiss has twice been nominated for an Academy Award®, for2002's "Frida" (also CDG and BAFTA-nominated) and 1995's "12Monkeys." Weiss' most recent costumes were seen in the periodensemble dramas "Bobby," "Hollywoodland" and "The Missing";in the international blockbuster "The Ring"; and in thecomedy romp "Fun with Dick and Jane." Her additional motionpicture costuming credits include "Auto Focus," "Hearts inAtlantis," "The Gift," "American Beauty" (Costume Designers Guild Award winner), "A Simple Plan," "Marvin's Room," "ItCould Happen to You," "Searching for Bobby Fischer,""Honeymoon in Vegas," "The Freshman," "Steel Magnolias," "Tequila Sunrise," "F/X" and "The Mean Season." On television, Weiss' work was seen in the recent HBOOriginal "Mrs. Harris," for which she received an Emmynomination and a Costume Designers Guild Award nomination.Weiss won the Emmy for Outstanding Costume Design for aLimited Series or Special for "The Dollmaker," starring JaneFonda, and for "A Woman of Independent Means." Her otherEmmy-nominated work includes "Liza Minelli Live from RadioCity Music Hall," "Evergreen" and "Little Gloria ... Happy atLast." Weiss has served on the faculty of Stanford Universityand as a visiting professor at UCLA. Her goal has alwaysbeen to allow those people who walk by to be given a momentto turn around and be acknowledged for who they wish to be. GEORGE DRAKOULIAS (Music Supervisor), a veteranmusician, record producer and music industry executive knownfor discovering and helming albums for such artists as theBlack Crowes and the Jayhawks, has supervised the select tracks, scores and soundtracks of 15 feature films andtelevision series. Those feature credits include two Todd Phillipscomedies, "School for Scoundrels," starring Billy BobThornton, and "Starsky & Hutch," with Ben Stiller, OwenWilson and Snoop Dogg; "Blade: Trinity," the third installment of the hit vampire thriller franchise starringWesley Snipes, Kris Kristofferson and Jessica Biel;"Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story"; and "Zoolander," Ben Stiller's comedy starring Stiller, Owen Wilson, Will Ferrelland Jon Voight. He also produced the soundtrack for "Zoolander" and received a "special thanks" for his work on"The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou." He supervised the television series "Wonderland" and the episode "A Tale of TwoCities" for the hit TV series "Lost." His work was most recently heard in David Fincher's latest thriller, "Zodiac,"starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Mark Ruffalo and Robert Downey, Jr. He has produced cuts on six feature film soundtracks,including two Richard Linklater comedies: "Bad News Bears,"starring Billy Bob Thornton, Greg Kinnear and Marcia Gay Harden; and "The School of Rock," starring Jack Black andJoan Cusack. He also produced the soundtrack cuts for"Herbie Fully Loaded," Trey Parker's twisted animatedadventure "Team America: World Police" and "Big Daddy." A bass player as a youth, Drakoulias would grow up tobecome a staff producer and A&R executive at the Def Americanlabel. It is there he discovered and later produced albumsfor such bands as the Black Crowes and the Jayhawks. THEODORE SHAPIRO's (Composer) versatility and talent are evident in his scores for a wide range of feature films, aswell as his works for the concert hall. His most recent workincludes scores for Mike Judge's comedy "Idiocracy"; the worldwide hit "The Devil Wears Prada"; the caper comedy "Funwith Dick and Jane"; "The Baxter"; "13 Going on 30"; and theBen Stiller comedies "Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story,""Starsky & Hutch" and "Along Came Polly" (BMI Film Music Award winner for all three). His additional feature filmcomposing credits include the Todd Phillips hit comedy "OldSchool," as well as the comedies "View from the Top" and "NotAnother Teen Movie"; the David Mamet projects "Heist" and"State and Main"; the indie circuit hit "Girlfight" fordirector Karyn Kusama; Peter Mattei's "Love in the Time ofMoney"; Morgan Freeman's "Hurricane Streets"; and John Hamburg's feature film screenwriting/directing debut, "SafeMen." Shapiro also scored "Wet Hot American Summer" and "Onthe Ropes." His work will soon be heard in the Seann WilliamScott/Billy Bob Thornton-starrer "Mr. Woodcock" and in thethriller "The Girl in the Park," starring Sigourney Weaverand Kate Bosworth. Among Shapiro's symphonic compositions are: "Chambers"(for small orchestra), recently performed by the L.A.Philharmonic and St. Paul Chamber Orchestra; "Avenues"(concerto for piano and orchestra), performed by both theSeattle Symphony and the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra; and"Of Blood and Carnations" (for orchestra), premiered by the N.Y. Chamber Orchestra and later performed by the Ft. WorthSymphony Orchestra. SARAH KAWAHARA's (Choreographer) work as an icechoreographer is widely acclaimed within the world ofinternational figure skating and, in 1997, was brought to theattention of a larger audience when she was the first iceskater ever to receive an Emmy Award in Best Choreography forABC's "Scott Hamilton Upside Down." She has choreographedScott's programs since the beginning of his professional career. By the age of 10, Montreal-born Kawahara began toconcentrate entirely on figure skating, later studying at theNational Ballet School of Canada and attending the Banff Centre of Fine Arts in Alberta, Canada, for six seasons. Kawahara joined Ice Capades as a principal skater at the age of 17, staying for seven years and soon becoming residentcoach. Sarah became Toller Cranston's muse for the CanadianBroadcasting Company (CBC) TV special "Strawberry Ice" andchoreographed and starred in Toller's CBC special "A True Gift of Christmas," going on to skate in John Curry's PBSspecial "Peter and the Wolf." Following her work with Toller, Kawahara choreographedPeggy Fleming's "An Evening on Ice" for the headliner room atHarrah's, Lake Tahoe. Sarah went on to choreograph and havea featured skating role in Shipstad Productions' "Ice," whichwas produced for Radio City Music Hall and starred Peggy Fleming, Robin Cousins and Toller Cranston. Her distinguished career includes choreography for "Concert on Ice," starring Dorothy Hamill, Tai and Randy andScott Hamilton; the national theater tour of "Festival onIce," starring Scott Hamilton; and serving as principalchoreographer at Ice Capades for five seasons. She haschoreographed programs for skaters such as Kurt Browning,Ilia Kulik, Michelle Kwan, Kristi Yamaguchi, Dorothy Hamill,Tai Babilonia and Randy Gardner, Gordeeva and Grinkov, OksanaBaiul, Klimova and Ponomarenko, and Victor Petrenko. In 1996 Sarah was asked to choreograph Oksana Baiul andVictor Petrenko for the Rickmill/Disney TV special "TheWizard of Oz on Ice." That led Kawahara to several touringshow productions: "The Spirit of Pocahontas," "Hercules onIce," "Disney's 75th Anniversary" and Feld's "Anastasia onIce." Kawahara's extensive work with Olympic champion Michelle Kwan includes three `Reflections on Ice' ABC TV specials (1999's "Michelle Kwan Skates to the Music of Mulan," 2000's"Michelle Kwan Skates to Disney's Greatest Hits" and 2001's"Michelle Kwan, Princesses on Ice"). Sarah alsochoreographed Kwan's long and exhibition programs for the2002 Winter Olympics. Additionally, Kawahara completed the staging andchoreography for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies of the2002 Salt Lake Winter Olympics.