“When we first came out with a film several years ago, the critics just murdered us,” Johnny Knoxville told Rolling Stone. “The second film we posted the negative reviews as part of our promotional campaign! And it’s not like we’ve changed. I think what’s happened is the critics writing now were probably in high school when they saw the first Jackass and liked it. Now they’re the critics. They have a fond memory of us.”
Jackass Forever‘s only real competition at the box office was the Roland Emmerich science-fiction film Moonfall. It centers around a group of astronauts and a conspiracy theorist who team up to stop the moon from colliding with Earth. It cost more than $150 million, is as dumb as it sounds, and has only pulled in $11 million.
The team behind Moonfall probably never imagined they’d be toppled by a movie where grown men shit their pants, lock each other in rooms with rattlesnakes, and unleash a bear into a space where a man is tied to chair with salmon in his pants and honey all over his head, but Jackass has been proving doubters wrong for a very long time. The original 2002 movie pulled in $80 million off a $5 million budget.
“It’s hard to know just how to take Jackass: The Movie,” wrote Rolling Stones‘s Peter Travers when it first hit theaters. “It’s not exactly stupid — who else would have thought of releasing a movie that’s pretty much exactly the same as the TV show it’s based on? Cynical might be a better word. Or even inspired — as long as your definition of inspiration includes shoving a toy car in your rear end.”
In another inspired scene from the movie, Steve-O got a smiley-face tattoo while hurtling down a bumpy desert road in a jeep driven by Henry Rollins. The end result was a smudgy mess that proudly sits on his arm to this day. Check out the scene right here.
In a recent episode of his Steve-O’s Wild Ride! podcast, he revealed that Nikki Sixx of Mötley Crüe was originally supposed to be the one driving the jeep. “I’m sitting there, just like every other day on that goddamn movie, just doing fuckin’ blow,” he said. “Except on this day, I’ve got this framed picture of me as a little kid with Nikki Sixx, and I’m just horking lines off of it. As If Nikki is going to be impressed by that! Dude was totally sober already at that point.”
He was stunned when Henry Rollins appeared instead, and more than a little afraid because at the time he was “hooking up with this chick” who told him crazy stories about Rollins that he’d recently repeated to Howard Stern live on the air. “I thought the bit was that Rollins was going to beat me up in the movie,” he said. “But he was super cool. … When my book came out, the writer did an interview with Rollins and Rollins said he hadn’t even heard about it.”
If they ever get around to making Jackass 5, something which seems quite possible after the success of this new one, maybe Rollins and Steve-O can finally battle it out. If that happens, our money is on Rollins. He’s like the Hulk of the rock world. He’s usually a reasonable guy, but you do not want to get him angry.