Eleven Things You Didn’t Know About ‘Stand by Me’

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sbmblu ray e1301338621468It’s hard to believe a quarter of a century has passed since Chris, Gordie, Vern and Teddy set out to find the body of Ray Brower. The 25th Anniversary edition of Stand By Me was recently released on Blu-ray, with an all-new picture-in-picture commentary track featuring Rob Reiner, Wil Wheaton and Corey Feldman that offers some cool new insight and stories from the making of this coming-of-age classic. Also included in the new Blu-ray is the Walking The Tracks documentary, an additional audio commentary by Rob Reiner and of course, a remastered version of the film. Here are eleven things you never knew about Stand By Me.

  1. The leech incident really happened to the author of the original story, Stephen King. A lot of the things in the story are drawn from his childhood and real friends.
  2. The boys were known to party hard. Corey Feldman and River Phoenix were the hellraisers of the younger kids. According to Corey, they frequented a local nightclub, even though they were underage. Corey drank his first 40 oz. beer, both of them smoked pot, River lost his virginity and a hotel lobby was trashed. Of the older actors, John Cusack and Keifer Sutherland were the troublemakers.
  3. Stand By Me was Jerry O’Connell’s first movie role and won over director Rob Reiner by mistaking him for Archie Bunker at his audition.
  4. The town of Brownsville, Oregon has a walking tour and map of all the locations used in the movie and holds an annual pie-eating contest in honor of the movie. Most of the train tracks are gone now and were turned into walking trails. The treehouse is also gone, although the tree still stands and the railroad bridge is actually in California.
  5. In the poignant, quiet scene where Gordy encounters a deer by the train tracks in the early morning, the crew was blaring air horns and banging pots and pans to get the deer to look in the right direction and run off when it needed to.
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  7. Jerry O’Connell was actually bitten by Chopper the dog. If you look closely in some scenes, you will see that his lip is swollen.
  8. Since the weather was perfect throughout the 60-day shoot, to get the cloudy look when the boys discover the body, the crew had to canopy a huge area of the woods with gray silks. Then a huge rainstorm came and started weighing the silks down so much, a crew member had to blast holes in it with a shotgun to let the water drain out.
  9. The boys smoked cigarettes made from cabbage leaves.
  10. Rob Reiner sneaks in a reference to one of his other movies. When one of the kids gets dropped off, they thank the driver for the ride and the driver shouts “Sure Thing!”
  11. The pies in the pie-eating contest scene were actually made from blueberry pie filling and black currant cottage cheese. Nearly enough to cause an actual Barf-O-Rama.
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  13. Instead of Ben E. King’s original version of the song, the producers were in talks with Michael Jackson to do a cover version of it for the movie. Thankfully, Rob Reiner decided the original was best since it was set in that era. Although, this video they made is one of the most awkward things I’ve ever seen.