Trivia / Zoolander

  • Actor Allusion:
    • Jon Voight as Derek's father.
    • David Duchovny as a conspiracy theorist, alluding to his famous role of Fox Mulder on The X-Files.
    • Zoolander's manager Maury Ballstein is played by Ben Stiller's father, and his love interest Matilda Jeffries is played by his wife.
      • Additionally, a protester at the awards ceremony is played by Ben Stiller's mom (the late Ann Meara).
    • James Marsden plays John Wilkes Booth, an "actor-slash-model". Marsden himself is an actor-slash-model.
  • Banned in China: In the former country, the movie was banned due to scenes showing Malaysians as sweatshop workers; in the latter country, it was banned due to the plot centered on an assassination attempt against the Dalai Lama and because of Singapore's proximity to and ties with Malaysia.
  • Casting Gag: David Duchovny known from The X-Files as a former hand model and Conspiracy Theorist.
  • Defictionalization: Orange Mocha Frappuccinos were sold at Starbucks for a limited time.
  • Real-Life Relative: Christine Taylor, who played Matilda, is Ben Stiller's wife, Maury was played by Jerry Stiller, Ben's father, and the protester who eggs Mugatu in the beginning is Anne Meara, Ben's mother.
  • Retroactive Recognition: In his first appearance in a US movie, Alexander Skarsgård was killed in a gasoline-fight explosion. Of course, he got better.
  • Technology Marches On: Derek's tiny cell phone was a hilarious gag exaggerating the tendency back in 2001 for the most cutting-edge electronics to be miniaturized. Less than a decade afterwards this trend towards smaller was completely reversed because of smartphones and touch screen technology, which made having an enormous display desirable. Posters for the 2016 sequel depict Derek and Hansel taking selfies using the latest style of wide, flat smartphones.
  • Throw It In: At the end of David Duchovny's long explanation for why models make the perfect assassins, Ben Stiller forgot what the next line was, and tried to wordlessly re-do the take by repeating his earlier line, "But why male models?" Duchovny rolled with it and ad-libbed "...you serious? I just... I just told you that, a moment ago." (or, of course, he was genuinely dumbfounded- one or the other. Or both) Fortunately, the error fit Stiller's character and was left in the final film.
  • Unintentional Period Piece: A deluge of early-'00s or late-'90s cameos and pop music? Old-fashioned computer monitors and large translucent-orange Mac computer? Record players? Derek's tiny cell phone representing his privilege? Editing out the Twin Towers? It sure feels like the Turn of the Millennium.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Trivia/Zoolander