It’s been 12 years since Ron Burgundy wowed us all with his machismo and his mustache, but besides his glorious mustache, his mad flute skills, and his affinity for scotchy scotch, what do we really know about the man, and by extension, his film, Anchorman? With that in mind, we decided to go back and remind you of some surprising details about the film. So read up and stay classy.
1. Ron Burgundy is a Jethro Tull super fan. Burgundy loves the Tull and his nightclub performance scene has several tributes to Jethro Tull flutist, Ian Anderson. Besides blurting out “Hey Aqualung,” and playing a delicious riff from the title track of Jethro Tull’s 1971 album, Burgundy finishes his performance by turning to the side and lifting up his leg, imitating the band’s logo.
2. The restaurant that Veronica and her female coworkers visit, is a health inspector’s nightmare. The restaurant is called “Escupimos en su Alimento” which translates to, “We spit in your food.” If only Yelp had been around in the 1970s.
3. The first draft of the script contained a fantastic story of monkeys and cannibalism. Adam McKay’s first script wasn’t even set in San Diego, but instead, involved two planes colliding and crashing on a remote mountain. One plane contains the Channel 4 News Team and the other is filled with monkeys and martial arts equipment. Naturally, the news team turns cannibalistic while battling their ninja monkey foes. I have to admit, I now really want to see Brick Tamland fight some sword-wielding monkeys.
4. DreamWorks was initially resistant to join Team Burgundy. Adam McKay and Will Ferrell had to pitch the idea to DreamWorks execs 20 times before the suits finally gave it the okay. The studio was doubtful that McKay and Ferrell could make a solid comedy based on reporters in the 1970s. It wasn’t until after the success of Elf and Old School that the studio finally realized the film was “kind of a big deal.”
5. Champ Kind is likely a fan of British sci-fi comics. Champ’s line, “I will take your mother, Dorothy Mantooth, out for a nice seafood dinner and never call her again” sounds like an incredibly polite insult, but is a reference to a 1950’s British comic book character, Dan Dare. Dan’s nemesis in the series makes the same threat against Dan’s mother, Dorthy Dare.
6. The Anchorman cast went through several incarnations to find the right talent. As iconic as the San Diego Channel 4 News Team is with David Koechner and Paul Rudd, several other actors were considered for the roles. John C. Reilly was to play Champ Kind, Ben Stiller and Ron Livingston were both considered for Brian Fantana, Chris Parnell was considered to play Brick Tamland, and Maggie Gyllenhaal auditioned for the role of Veronica.