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Over the years, Tom Hanks’ directorial debut That Thing You Do! has become a certified cult classic, with legions of loyal fans celebrating its innocence, its enthusiasm and its catchy-as-hell soundtrack. We don’t think anyone has ever actually soiled themselves because they were so excited about That Thing You Do! But now we know that one of the film’s stars crapped his own pants while filming an important scene in the movie, and the reason why is pretty outrageous.
Here’s the thread. Ethan Embry, who played the bass player of The Wonders in Tom Hanks’ jubilant rock-and-roll comedy, shared this story on social media in response to someone claiming to be a “Duck Dad.” It seems that Embry had a pet duck on the set of That Thing You Do! – which he awesomely named Salvador Ducky – but then he made some poor decisions… which led to the on-set shitting.
Man, that is beyond unfortunate. Stomach issues aside, not having your own bathroom is a serious issue. The Wonders were supposed to be bonding by playing an overnight-sensation band who strikes it big with a hit single. But if your bass player is crapping his pants because he let a baby duck eat out of his mouth, how much “bonding” is actually happening?
Maybe this is why The Bass Player (Ethan Embry didn’t even have a name in the movie) leaves the band mid-movie and gets written out?
And then he shares that story about Hollywood assistants having to lay down sheets of cardboard in Tom Hanks’ Airstream so that Embry could duck walk to the toilet without shit falling out of his pant leg. And really, who hasn’t been there, am I right?
These are the stories that I wish were shared at press junkets. Not how everyone got along, or how they improvised a few takes, but “the script was just so good.” Why do we have to wait decades to hear the real scoop on co-stars who shat themselves while filming live concert shots because they foolishly let a duck eat straight out of their mouth?
Well, anyway. We are contractually obligated to share this song every time that we write about the amazing That Thing You Do!
We will never think of Tom Hanks’ masterful movie musical the same way ever again.