It doesn’t take a superspy to unlock the mysteries of Austin Powers, which broke records in its $73 million opening weekend. Goldmember is exposed.
LOSING POWER In the end, director Jay Roach trimmed half of his three-hour original. Gone are cameos by hairless cat Mr. Bigglesworth, Will Ferrell as Mustafa, and Austin exes Elizabeth Hurley and Heather Graham. So is a Monty Python- inspired scene that followed a villain’s gory demise. ”It was this crazy orgy of vomit,” Roach recalls wistfully. You’ll also have to wait for the DVD to enjoy the Magnolia-esque ”What’s It All About, Austin?” bit – in which Roach’s wife, Bangle Susanna Hoffs, spoofs the theme from Powers dad Michael Caine’s 1966 flick Alfie. ”[Mike Myers] was wandering around Tokyo looking for his father and everyone was singing,” he says. Older No. 2 Robert Wagner in drag and young No. 2 Rob Lowe, in boxers, were among the crooners.
FOOTAGE FRENZY For close-ups of a young Caine in a car-explosion flashback, Roach interspersed snippets from Otto Preminger’s 1967 movie Hurry Sundown. ”It was a scene in Louisiana,” says the actor of the earlier film. Producers also used a clip of a butt-scratching monkey, which Austin uses to introduce Beyonce Knowles’ Foxxy Cleopatra to the Net. ”America’s Funniest Home Videos owns it, and it was expensive,” says producer John Lyons. ”But once it got a big laugh [in test screenings], the decision was made that we must have it.”
SEQUEL SECRETS ”Mike has so many ideas,” says Roach, although nothing’s been confirmed. ”I’d love to have a spin-off that’s all Dr. Evil in the early ’60s.” Meanwhile, Lyons hopes it’s curtains for Powers. ”I want to do a Broadway musical,” he says. ”We’ve been kicking this idea around. There’s this [Austin] musical busting to get out.”