Roto-Rooter Goes Hollywood: Watch for our van in The Wedding Ringer
By Paul Abrams
You can’t miss Roto-Rooter in the new movie, The Wedding Ringer, which opens nationwide on January 16th. In the film, a Roto-Rooter van is shown jumping across an open section of a bridge spanning the Los Angeles River. The film’s producers, Sony Pictures/Screen Gems could have used a plain van or they could have decorated the van with a decal package for some made up brand. But they didn’t. See the stunt in this short video clip.
Sony realized that there’s a certain surprise factor when you place real world brands and products in a film. And let’s face it; the Roto-Rooter brand often elicits a chuckle when people talk about it. The nature of the plumbing and sewer & drain service is dirty so it we’re a great fit when it comes to being the butt of a joke. It’s also a savvy business decision on Roto-Rooter’s part because the scene will live on forever in film history through the theatrical run, into the on-demand phase then the DVD release. As long as there are re-runs on TV, viewers will see a Roto-Rooter plumber and his plumbing van in the film.
Roto-Rooter provided four different vans for the film. Each was used in a different scene but they had to be identical in every respect. I had the pleasure of visiting the set and watching the stunt first hand. The stunt was planned out to the last detail. But the thing that surprised me the most was that the van didn’t land on an air bag and it didn’t land on the pavement, it landed on three or four layers of stacked cardboard boxes. Who knew that cardboard could catch and stop a flying 1-ton van? You won’t see the landing in the film but that’s how it was done.
This is a very funny film, especially for those who enjoyed buddy comedies like The Hangover. The cast is top shelf with comedians Kevin Hart and Josh Gad and the lovely Kaley Cuoco-Sweeting. But in our humble opinion, the best part of the film is the Roto-Rooter stunt!
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