The filmmaker adapted his 1981 book of the same name for the big screen and the teen movie, directed by Amy Heckerling and starring Sean Penn and Jennifer Jason Leigh, was released in the U.S. on 13 August, 1982.
Thirty years later, Crowe has revisited his work and paid tribute to everyone who helped to make his first screenwriting effort an underground success in a touching note posted on fansite TheUncool.com on Monday (13Aug12).
Crowe’s message reads: “On the last day of filming Fast Times at Ridgemont High there were high-fives and happy/sad goodbyes. Amy Heckerling had powered through a tough schedule, and we’d snuck the movie through the studio system, in no small part thanks to our fiercely funny and protective producer Art Linson.
“Sean Penn, who’d been in character the entire filming, arrived in a brown corduroy jacket and introduced himself. ‘I’m Sean,’ he announced. We all felt instantly nostalgic for the blonde (sic) stoner we’d known and called Jeff for the previous three months.
“I looked around, and saw one of the red trash cans that had followed us from location to location, from the Sherman Oaks mall to Van Nuys High (in California). It’s been in my writing room ever since. Happy 30th Anniversary… and thanks to all the cast, crew and fine friends we still have from those b**chin’ summer days of not so long ago…”
Fast Times at Ridgemont High also featured early acting appearances from Forest Whitaker and Nicolas Cage, who was then billed under his birth name, Nicolas Coppola.