Monday, April 24, 2000
Houston, Texas
Volume 65, Issue 139

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Cast of Road Trip hoping for American Pie-like success

By Jake McKim
Daily Cougar Staff

The upcoming Dreamworks Picture Road Trip is a raucous, American Pie meets Dawson's Creek meets Clueless meets ... well, you get the point.

Starring young guns Breckin Meyer (Go), Seann William Scott (American Pie), Amy Smart (Varsity Blues), Paulo Costanzo (first feature film), DJ Qualls (first feature) and Rachel Blanchard (TV's Clueless), Road Trip is the latest in a recent trend of teen-oriented movies featuring goofy storylines that seem to capture the imaginations of America's sex-crazed youth.

Rachel Blanchard

The adventure goes something like this: Josh (Meyer) is involved in a long-lasting relationship with Tiffany (Blanchard), but ever since they went off to college, the two have slowly drifted apart. When Josh gives in to the temptation of Beth (Smart), who decides to videotape the whole incident, the tape is accidentally mailed to Tiffany. The rest of the film focuses on Josh and his friends E.L., Rubin and Kyle, and their attempt at getting to the tape before it gets to Tiffany.

The problem is Josh goes to school in Ithaca, N.Y., while Tiffany is getting her education in Austin, Texas, making for a very long trip, especially for four college guys with no money.

Breckin Meyer

"We all became really close while working on this film," Meyer said during a recent press junket at the Brentwood/Bel-Air Holiday Inn. "When you have to be around a group of people everyday, you're kind of forced to get to know each other."

This family atmosphere made the sex scene between Meyer and Smart more easily manageable when it came time to perform.

"I've never done a love scene before, but I've known Amy for a while, so it wasn't so bad. It was a little nerve-wracking but I was totally clothed in the scene so I was doing just fine. She's the one who had to take off a lot," Meyer said.

Amy Smart

Blanchard, who plays the relatively straight role of Tiffany, described the laid-back set as perfectly conducive to a positive working environment.

"We all (cast and crew) just had a lot of fun. People played lots of practical jokes, and I think it's safe to say we're all friends now.

"I think this film is more complex than American Pie because it deals with a serious relationship and the real-life things all in those relationships have to contend with."

In addition to the talented young stars of Road Trip, MTV comedian Tom Green plays a fairly large role, pushing the limits of offbeat comedy.

The wild and zany Tom Green makes an appearance in Road Trip playing the role of Barry, a bizarre college student who looks after his friend's pet snake when he leaves for a road trip.

Van Redin/Dreamworks Pictures

"It was a trip working with Tom," Meyer said. "He kept the set hilarious at all times. He is truly funny 24 hours a day, seven days a week."

Green plays Barry, basically the emcee of the movie, who is also Josh's crazy friend. He decides to stay in New York and watch over Rubin's pet snake.

Amy Smart, who played the role of the sultry yet somewhat innocent Beth, said despite her reservations, it wasn't too difficult to strip down to her birthday suit for one sexy scene.

"It was a fun day of shooting. The people around me made me feel very comfortable. I just felt it was important for the character, and I was just doing my job as an actress.

"Regardless, I don't think nudity is bad as long as it's in the right context and it's right for the character."

Seann William Scott, the one character many will recognize from his role as Stifler in American Pie, comes across as a silly, normal twentysomething who'd make a perfect fit in a boy band.

Seann William Scott

"This isn't one of those movies that's gonna win Academy Awards, but it's just a fun, entertaining formula that I think people are gonna absolutely love.

"I think this movie is so real, so representative of what guys are really like, you know, hormone-driven. I think that's what people will like about it." 

The comparisons to American Pie are inevitable, but it will be difficult for Road Trip to match the overwhelming success of the 1999 movie that grossed over $100 million.

When it hits theaters May 19, the cast of Road Trip would settle for something rivaling American Pie's status, Meyer said.

"If we can even come close to having the effect American Pie had on people, we'll be happy ... believe me," he said.

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