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Film

Mike Myers explains why Paul McCartney is the worst cinema partner

@Russellisation

Mike Myers was a hot Hollywood property back in the 1990s, thriving from his time on Saturday Night Live (SNL)in 1975 as he took to the comedy genre with frantic enthusiasm. Whilst he was well known for his stand-up routines, Myers also saw success in the 1992 movie Wayne’s World, a movie based on a sketch from SNL about two music lovers who start a public-access cable show.

Five years later, however, it was the Austin Powers series that would establish him as a chameleon comedian with many faces. With thick-rimmed black glasses, white frilly lace cravat and noticeably poor oral hygiene, Mike Myers’ titular Bond piss-take, Austin Powers, heightened the 007 character and exposed his foibles 35 years in the making. Released in 1997, Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery was a monumental success, with Myers’ take on Britain’s most famous spy being a welcome relief from his decades of monotonous tomfoolery. 

Sequels followed, with The Spy Who Shagged Me in 1999 and Goldmember in 2002, as Myers further grew in popularity, taking the lead role of the big green ogre in Dreamwork’s hit franchise Shrek. 

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Having enjoyed a comedy career spanning stage and screen, Myers has had the experience of meeting some of the industry’s biggest names whilst being treated to the Hollywood high life. Discussing the perks of such a career at the 2022 first annual Netflix Is a Joke: The Festival in Los Angeles, Myers sat down with filmmaker David O.Russell to reflect on some memorable celebrity events he’d had over the years. 

Recalling being at the first screening of the Queen biopic Bohemian Rhapsody in 2018, Myers remembers being sat next to Brian May, the lead guitarist of the iconic rock band. Having passed away before the release of the film, Myers had not thought that lead singer Freddie Mercury would have had the chance to see the movie, which pays tribute to the frontman, before his death. 

This was until May turned to Myers during the screening and said, “You know, Freddie saw [Wayne’s World], and he loved it,’ and I cried around the spot,” the actor lovingly recalled, adding, “I had no idea. I didn’t know he had seen that until then”.

The other cinema screening Myers recalls isn’t quite as emotional as the aforementioned story, with the actor remembering when he sat next to Sir Paul McCartney at the premiere of Wayne’s World 2 in London. 

“My parents are from Liverpool, so you gotta imagine I was very nervous,” Myers stated before he explained the situation, adding, “I was sitting there nervous because, you know, I feel like an asshole, I’m in my head. And [McCartney] goes, ‘Well, that’s funny, that one’”. 

Surprised that McCartney was talking during the screening, the musician further added, “Did you write this?” before Myers stated, “Yeah, most of it”. Expressing his lighthearted frustration that he was talking over the film, Myers concluded by adding, “my joke in my head was, ‘I wish I was sitting next to the quiet one’”. 

Take a look at the trailer for Wayne’s World 2, below, and remember, if you find yourself sitting next to Paul McCartney at the cinema, maybe make the difficult decision to move seats.