Weird Al Yankovic Talks Pulling Out His 'Address Book' To Cast Star-Studded Scene In New Biopic

Daniel Radcliffe as Weird Al Yankovic
(Image credit: Roku Channel)

Nothing about the new biopic Weird seems normal. Which is totally by design. After all, legendary Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe is stepping into the lead role of Weird Al Yankovic, noted pop-song satirist, for a tongue-in-cheek mockery  of the musician biopic that started out as a short film on Funny or Die but now has expanded into a feature-length punchline. We know that Evan Rachel Wood plays Madonna in the movie, and that Weird will dig into some of the best parodies Weird Al has ever written. But how did the movie successfully secure the famous faces who appear throughout the movie? Fans have Weird Al Yankovic’s rolodex to thank for that one. 

The legendary songwriter has been making the rounds promoting Weird, which will be on the Roku Channel later this year. And during a conversation at New York Comic-Con (covered by EW) about a particular pool scene that features a number of actors portraying famous celebrities from the 1980s, Yankovic himself made it clear that he called in favors to fill that scene with as many recognizable names and faces as possible. Said Weird Al:

I was sort of the casting director for that particular pool scene. I went through my address book, emailed a bunch of my friends, and said, 'Hey we're shooting this crazy pool party in the Valley, do you want to come out and spend half a day doing it?' Thankfully a bunch of people showed up, and we were able to pull it off! I still can't believe that actually happened.

That’s how things happen in show business. It’s all about who you know, as much as it is about what you know. And over the years, as he has worked on songs like “Eat It” or “Like a Surgeon,” you know that Weird Al Yankovic has crossed paths with some of the most famous people on this planet. He probably stays really close to them too. Or, as Weird director Eric Appel added to the conversation regarding recruiting famous faces: 

Al kind of just showed me his holiday card mailing list and said, ‘Pick some of these names!’

We have no idea how many people made it into the final cut of Weird, but the trailer for the movie looks completely off the rails, and like a really fun time at the movies. We raved about the movie after seeing it at the Toronto International Film Festival, and other critics seemed to echo our sentiments. Perhaps it’s because Daniel Radcliffe is half naked throughout the entire comedy? Or maybe Weird just hits that sweet spot between fact and farce, where some of the biggest laughs can be found.

Find out for certain when Weird hits the Roku Channel on November 4.

Sean O'Connell
Managing Editor

Sean O’Connell is a journalist and CinemaBlend’s Managing Editor. He's frequently found on Twitter at @Sean_OConnell. ReelBlend cohost. A movie junkie who's Infatuated with comic-book films. Helped get the Snyder Cut released, then wrote a book about it.