15 Years Later, Ethan Embry Still Not Sure What Can’t Hardly Wait Is About

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Ethan Embry Can't Hardly Wait

Did you ever expect the film to join the canon of teen comedies?

No. No. You never do. It took 10 years for anybody to see it. Again, Empire Records, another one of those weird “where did that come from?” [things]. It was only in four theaters for one weekend.

Before the Internet, before everybody knew what the sales were, before the movie even opened, you know what it was going to make that weekend. You used to have to go to the theater to scope it out. You could kind of see what the audience was going to be like. I remember I went to a popular L.A. theater, and there was eight people for the 10 o’clock showing. I was bummed! Cause I had a back-end deal. I wasn’t going to make any money if no one saw it!

Are you surprised that Empire Records and Can’t Hardly Wait has picked up some cult status?

Yeah. But you know it happened now instead of then. More people have seen it in the past five years than in the first 10 years it came out.

It’s funny because people expect me to look the same way I did fifteen years ago. Cause they just saw the movie. They are often like, “You look old.” No s—, dude, it was 15 years ago!Your hair fell out!” That’s what happens when you become 35.

Do fans ever quote the movie to you?

Maybe that’s what those weird people are saying. I haven’t seen the movie all the way through, and I was stoned. I never read the script. If they are quoting it, then I don’t know.

Do you know what Can’t Hardly Wait is about?

Uh, uh, uh… It’s about a party right? Underage kids drinking and smoking and having underage sex, right?

That’s the basic idea. What is your favorite memory from the film?

That it was really great… I loved working with Lauren Ambrose. That girl is smart, she’s funny, she’s really down to earth. She’s not in this business to look good all the time. She survives off her talents. That’s highly respectable.

And Peter – I must have done that film with Peter and Breckin Myers prior. Because Peter and I were already buddies by then. So it was fun hanging out with him. It was a good time, man.

Would you be up for a sequel?

Maybe. Maybe if they paid me more than the last time. [Preston would] have to get pretty dark. [He and Amanda] would have to not be together anymore. I’ve beaten myself up quite a bit in the past 15 years. Yeah, so maybe, if he went down the actual Vonnegut writer’s path. Amanda and him had a horrible breakup and there were kids involved. He drinks himself silly over a typewriter. I’d make that sequel.

Watch the trailer for the original:

[Photos: SplashNews.com, Columbia Pictures]