"I never had any friends later like the ones I had when I was 12. Jesus, does anyone?" That memorable line is just one of the many reasons this coming-of-age movie holds up so well. Earlier this year, the Stand By Me cast reunited for the 25th anniversary Blu-ray release.
But we can go one better. We're airing the movie 25 years to the date it first hit theaters — August 8th at 8 PM ET/ 5 PM PT. ReelzChannel is DirecTV channel 238, Dish Network channel 299, and available on your cable or satellite system.
To celebrate the anniversary, we dug up 25 great pieces of trivia.
The movie was a sleeper hit. It was released in only 16 theaters on August 8, 1986. Two weekends later when it went to wide release, it was #2 at the box office.
The movie is based on the story "The Body" in Stephen King
's 1982 collection, Different Seasons
. That same story collection inspired another hit movie, The Shawshank Redemption
During his audition, Jerry O'Connell
mistook Rob Reiner
for Archie Bunker... and the mistake helped him get the role.
To get an authentic reaction, the young actors didn't see Ray Brower (Kent Luttrell) until filming the scene where his body was discovered. The tears in the railway bridge crossing scene were also real — after many unsuccessful takes, Reiner yelled at the boys to get them crying.
In an interview, Kiefer Sutherland
claimed a Renaissance Fair was near one of the filming sites, saying Jerry O'Connell went and bought some cookies and toys. Unfortunately, the cookies turned out to have pot in them. They found O'Connell two hours later crying and high in a parking lot and had to halt shooting for the day.
The cigarettes smoked by the boys in the movie were made from cabbage leaves. Rob Reiner, an avid non-smoker who campaigned for anti-smoking laws in California, insisted on it.
was originally asked to do a cover of Ben E. King's song. Reiner later decided to use the original since it matched the movie's era.
didn't just play a writer in the movie. He's published several books (Just a Geek, Dancing Barefoot, The Happiest Days of Our Lives,
and Memories of the Future Volume 1
) and launched his popular blog
To get a laugh that matched the one described in King's story, Corey Feldman
and Rob Reiner tested 30 different versions before deciding on Teddy Duchamp's.
The crew blared air horns and banged pots and pans to get the deer to look at Gordy and later run off into the woods.
In the infamous pie scene, the vomit-worthy pies were made with blackberry pie filling and black currant cottage cheese.
There are at least two shoutouts to other movie roles in Stand By Me
. Wil Wheaton's grandfather was in Wagon Train
and his grandmother asked Rob Reiner if the show could be worked into the script. The clubhouse song "I Ran All The Way Home" is the theme to All the Way Home
, which starred Frances Lee McCain
, who played Mrs. Lachance.
The covergirl on the vintage movie magazine is actress Elizabeth McGovern
, who was engaged at the time to Rob Reiner.
In the first train-dodge scene, when Verne walks back onto the track you can see his wireless mike drop down his left leg and flop near his ankle.
The gang's off-screen antics while filming rivaled those onscreen. Their misbehavior and rowdiness at the hotel included throwing patio furniture in the pool and Wheaton continually disabling the pinball machine so they could play for free. In addition, according to Feldman, "It was this first time I ever drank alcohol, the first time I ever kissed a girl off-screen and it was the first time I smoked marijuana. I did all of these things as part of my coming-of-age experience of Stand by Me
and so did River."
The leeches scene comes directly from Stephen King's childhood. (And, yes, real leeches were used in the movie.)
originally auditioned for the part of Gordie Lachance.
was not originally cast as The Writer. He replaced David Dukes
during filming, and they had to reshoot many scenes. The first longshot of the grownup Lachance sitting in a car, though, is Dukes, not Dreyfuss.
was born Bruno Giovanni Quidaciolu Sr., making him Mr. Quidacioluo both in the movie and in real life.
Rob Reiner wasn't the first director attached to the movie. It was given to him when Adrian Lyne
's Nine 1/2 Weeks
ran over schedule.
Method actor Kiefer Sutherland — who played Ace, head of the Cobras gang — liked to pick on the four boys even when the cameras weren't rolling to maintain the mood.
In the flashback scene, John Cusack
plays Gordie's deceased and dearly missed brother, Denny. Cusack and Reiner had just finished filming The Sure Thing
Wil Wheaton had to fake running slow so that River Phoenix's character could beat him in the junkyard race scene.
It's not marshmallows but balled up hamburger meat on the end of the boys' campfire sticks.
In Brownsville, Oregon, which stood-in for the fictional town of Castle Rock, the visitors center has a map with all the filming locations... in several languages. People still come from around the world to see the town.