Danny Leiner was the movie director that truly captured the true essence of the classic stoner. Unfortunately, the answer is no to you stoners outta here. You were not too high to read that incorrectly. Leiner is truly dead. And not the kind of dead like, “oh I got so high last night I think I died.” We wish that was was what happened, but unfortunately, Leiner lost his battle with lung cancer on October 18th.
Danny Leiner directed the internationally famous movies Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle, and Dude Where’s my Car? Ironically, Lainer was the driving force behind both flicks, yet both movies barely had any driving involved in-them at all–since both movies could easily be solved if the two protagonists from each flick simply just had a car. Classic stoner problems. Nothing like having a massive issue that turns out to not be a massive issue when you sober up.
I can personally thank Danny Leiner for giving me a chronic fear of pooping in public. My young friends always tried to play this with each-other. It ruined me. I still, to this day, cannot poop in public–I especially cannot poop in front of friends. One time, I had an absolute emergency and couldn’t hold in a poop anymore, so I just had to use the stall at this bar.
A guy was pooping in the stall next to me, and when initially relaxed my sphincter enough so that I’d release all of my shit, I made this loud farting noise along with it. The guy pooping int he next stall over goes, “That’s it. Okay, let it out.” I didn’t respond, and when I finally pooped again, he said, “There you go. That’s the way.” Everything I worried about when I was a kid was then confirmed. I am now thankful to Leiner for my cleanly, neurotic pooping habits.
Harold and Kumar go to White Castle was named to Rolling stone’s top 50 best comedy movies of all time, and Rolling Stone’s top 10 stoner movies of all time. Honestly, Rolling Stone really missed out on an opportune joke with the stoner list. They easily could have called it “Rolling Stoner’s top 10 movies of all time.” Or at least make a joke about rolling a joint or blunt, or maybe even make it “A Blunt Rolling, Stoner’s list of top 10 comedy movies.” Just a shame.
Dude, Where’s my Car? did not have the review recognition that Harold and Kumar did, but after being aired by Comedy Central relatively often, the movie gained a cult-following. Anyone with a brain and has seen the movie knows that the plot is complete ass, but it’s admittedly funny. The plot is so out of this world (literally, it involves aliens) that you have to wonder if the main characters were high the entire time.
Can you imagine a world without Ashton Kutcher? Well, neither could Danny Leiner. Ashton Kutcher had gained fame from that 70’s show after word got around that he was a shitty male model (probably). Considering that 70’s show wasn’t knocking off anyone’s pants, Kutcher was less than moderately famous. Kutcher’s real recognition came from his first major film, Dude Where’s My Car? He gained serious recognition for playing his role so well.
Kutcher clearly attributes much of his success to Danny Leiner, and it seems as if Leiner whipped Kutcher into shape and taught him what it took to be successful in the business. You get the sense from this tweet that Ashton Kutcher was a cocky little shit back in the day:
He co-starred with Sean William Scott, who also got super famous from the movie. Sean William Scott is best known for his role as Steve Stiffler in the American Pie movies, but I’d argue that he gained more fame from Dude Where’s My Car? because you saw Scott in Dude Where’s my Car? and would be like, “wait, the guy not from that 70’s show looks familiar, where do I know him from?” And then you we’re like, “Oh Wait, that’s Stiffler!” And then they both went on to do a lot of movies.
Fun Fact: Sean William Scott won the MTV Movie Award for Best Kiss. Who was the lucky lady that smacked lips with him? Trick question, you idiot. It was his co-star of American Pie 2, Jason Biggs.
To give you even more of a picture of Leiner’s legacy, Leiner also directed the Office, Arrested Development, and Freak and Geeks. So yeah, the world really lost a man that knew what worked in the comedy world. Though I have never been the biggest fan of Freeks and Geeks (I just think it’s an overrated TV show because its entire cast is made up of people that are insanely famous present-day so people look back at it fondly and think, “oh wow this show must be really good since all these people are in it”).
In any case, Leiner’s legacy as a comedic genius will not be forgotten. I mean, yeah it may temporarily be forgotten by people that get way too high and can’t even remember what their mother’s name is, but eventually it will come back to them.
This scene is funnier now that NPH has come out as a gay man. I wonder if Danny Leiner knew that. Also, last fun fact, is that That 70’s show came out in 1998, 28 years after 1970. 1990 was 28 years ago…if we came out with a present day That 70’s Show with the same time proportions, we’d have to name it, That 90’s Show.