When Jeff Bridges tweeted the imminent return of his most popular character “The Dude” recently, Big Lebowski fans’ heads were spinning like bowling balls.
“Can’t be living in the past, man. Stay tuned” was the simple message accompanying a video of Bridges in costume. However, there’s been a twist in the tale which brings him face to face with another iconic ‘90s character.
Stella Artois have turned out to be behind the Dude’s reappearance. Its new TV spot sees cinema’s ultimate slacker enter a bar to order a drink. But not his usual White Russian (vodka, coffee liqueur, cream and ice).
This time he’s on the Stella, which he amusingly mispronounces. Yet the person who came in before him knows all the brands and exactly how to pronounce them.
Sarah Jessica Parker has reprised her role of Carrie Bradshaw from Sex and The City to cross paths with the original Jeffrey Lebowski. When he sits at the table next to hers, she compliments him on his choice of tipple.
As anticipated, it’s to play during the upcoming Super Bowl on February 3rd. The initial teaser featured the date at the end of the clip.
“Careful man, there’s a beverage here!” tweeted the veteran actor when unveiling the new production, one of many famous lines from the 1998 film which celebrated its 20th anniversary last year.
Written and directed by the Coen Brothers, the movie became a major cult favorite. It even gave rise to a religion known as “Dudeism.” Bridges supplied his own clothes to create the Dude’s much-copied look. The character was based on Jeff Dowd, a movie marketer and co-founder of the Sundance Film Festival.
The star is certainly happy to be linked to the role. In January, when being presented with the Cecil B. DeMille Award at the Golden Globes, he commented “If I’m lucky, I’ll be associated with the Dude for the rest of my life. I feel so honored to be a part of that film.”
Those who hoped Bridges’ was heralding a Big Lebowski sequel remain disappointed. He has expressed interest in playing the part again, though prospects of a Part 2 seem remote.
In 2014 a hoax circulated that a second movie was in production which would feature Bill Murray as the Dude’s brother. As reported by WENN, even Bridges believed the news. “There was a pretty good rumor going around recently that got me; I was excited! I had to call my agent and say, ‘Hey, what’s happening?’ (He said), ‘No, it’s just rumors.’”
However there is a glimmer of hope for aficionados to cling to. Co-star John Turturro has remade 1974 crime comedy Going Places, and in an unusual move is resurrecting Jesus Quintana for the main character. The film is set for release this year and is recognized as an official part of the Lebowski universe.
As for Sarah Jessica Parker, she last played Carrie Bradshaw in 2010’s Sex and The City 2. Based on Candace Bushnell’s book, the TV series ran from 1998 to 2004.
What drew her to the Stella Artois ad and a run in with the Dude? It turns out both actors were brought to the table by the involvement of water.org, a charity co-founded by Matt Damon (who worked with Bridges on the Coens’ True Grit).
With purchases of Stella going toward the promotion of clean water and sanitation in the developing world, the decision was a no brainer for Parker.
Speaking to Elite Daily, she remarked, “I found their work not just important but urgent, life-changing, life-altering so it became incredibly easy for me to say yes — not only that, but to feel privileged to be a part of it. I just think it was clever to take these two characters who have these associations with these drinks and show them making this very simple switch.”
The high profile spot looks like it’s going to inspire a lot more than just half time refreshment.