‘The Three Stooges’ and Zeitgeist Cameos

ALTGet your horrified, indignant scoffs ready for this statement: The 2012 remake of The Three Stooges may just turn out to be the time capsule for a generation. The Farrelly Brothers‘ update of the beloved slapstick trio features some of the most prevalent, recognizable names in modern-day pop culture: Snooki and The Situation. Yes, Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi and Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino, they of Jersey Shore fame and the impending apocalypse, are just a few of the zeitgeist-y cameos in the comedy, which hits theaters this weekend.The reality stars are joined by their Jersey Shore cohorts on screen, as well as Sports Illustrated model Kate Upton and “Old Spice Guy” Isiah Mustafa. (IMDb notes that Dwight Howard, Antonio Sabato Jr., and Justin Lopez also appear in the movie.)

Of course, like any movie that takes advantage of on flavor-of-the-moment cameos, Stooges runs the risk of looking terribly outdated by the time it arrives in the theaters. Such casting turns a project into a veritable Now That’s What I Call Music for the big screen, if you will. Yes, Jersey Shore marked a very specific moment in pop culture, but despite some truly upsetting tabloid cover lines and spin-offs, dwindling ratings and all-around fatigue implies that moment may have already, mercifully, passed us by. Still, for a brief window in our nation’s history, we were enraptured by the fist bumping antics of the Jersey Shore cast and The Three Stooges will forever be around to remind us that we, as a nation, let them get famous enough to make perfume and appear in movies with Larry David and Jane Lynch. We brought this on ourselves, America.

Here’s some other examples of when of-the-moment pop culture and the big screen have collided:

Betty White in The Proposal: Okay, it’s not really fair to define White’s role in The Proposal as a cameo since she’s a supporting character in the hit 2009 comedy, but talk about striking while the iron was hot. The Proposal was released at the peak of White’s comeback and her crowd-pleasing performance as a groping, dancing Granny all but solidified her place in our hearts as the ultimate comeback kid.

Kim Kardashian in Disaster Movie: Never mind the fact that the 2008 spoof comedy sounds like it could be the name of a Kardashian biopic, the reality star strayed from the celebrity cameo standard of playing themselves and instead opted to play a cheerleader named “Lisa.” We’ll all remember where we were when we didn’t remember Kim Kardashian actually starred in a movie.

Paris Hilton in House of Wax: Or, as it is known throughout the ages, The Movie That Killed Paris Hilton. (If only it had been able to stop The Hottie & the Nottie.)

Chuck Norris in Dodgeball: The original meme generator took time from his busy logic-defying ass-kicking skills to appear in the 2004 comedy.

Sugar Ray in Father’s Day/Blink-182 in American Pie: What would the ’90s have been without Blink-182, Sugar Ray, American Pie or Father’s Day? (You can reasonably answer three of those!) Both bands appeared in the comedies as — you guessed it — rockers.

Honorable mention: Despite being about seven years too late, Billy Blanks, Jared “Subway Guy” Fogle, and Bill Romanowski were among some of the cameos in Jack and Jill. (Note: Johnny Depp and Al Pacino both apparently lost some sort of bet and made appearances in the Razzie darling, too.)

Can you think of some other zeitgeist-y cameos from movies? Share them in the comments section!

{Photo(s) © 2012- 20th Century Fox- All Rights Reserved]


Sofia Vergara on the Set of The Three Stooges

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