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Saturday, May 8, 2010

FUN FACTS for tonight's new iCARLY & VICTORIOUS!!!

by Dan Schneider
iCarly Executive Producer/Creator



Today is Saturday, May 8th , 2010.

Here's all the cool behind-the-scenes scoop about tonight's BRAND NEW EPISODES of iCarly -- "iBelieve in Bigfoot" -- and Victorious "Tori The Zombie".

iCarly – "iBelieve in Bigfoot" airs tonight at 8:00 PM (7 central).

Victorious – "Tori The Zombie" airs tonight at 9:00 PM (8 central).

If you're an iCarly and/or Victorious super-fan, you'll probably enjoy reading this stuff.  But if you're a casual fan, you might find it a little boring.  But even more important...

DON'T READ THIS BEFORE YOU WATCH THE EPISODE IF YOU DON'T LIKE SPOILERS!!!!  YOU'VE BEEN WARNED!!! :)  Remember: You can wait and read these Fun Facts after you watch the episode.  And please feel free to DISCUSS the episode here below, in the comments.  Okay, here we go....

When you're done reading all this, please tell any of your friends who like iCarly and/or Victorious about these Fun Facts, and that they can come here to read them.  Thanks!

*** iBelieve ln Bigfoot ***

I showed this episode to my wife Lisa two nights ago and I watched her face while she watched the show.  She never stopped smiling, and she laughed a lot.  I always know that's a very good sign.

It's funny... when the writer who first pitched (suggested) this episode first said the word "Bigfoot", I cocked my eyebrow and gave him a look.  He stopped and said "What's wrong?"  I said, "You really want us to do an iCarly episode about Bigfoot?"  Really?"  He smiled and said, "Just listen to the pitch -- you might like it."  So, I sat and listened.  And I did like it. :)

Why did I (at first) have a negative reaction to doing a story about Bigfoot?  Well... it just sounded, to me, like it could be a little cheesy.  I even jokingly said to the writer, "Are you sure we wouldn't be jumping the shark a little bit, doing an episode about Bigfoot?"  As you'll see, later in these Fun Facts, that even became something "Sam" (Jennette McCurdy) says in the actual episode – it's one of my favorite jokes in the show.

Needless to say, after the writers and I discussed the story, I loved it – which is why this episode now exists. :)

I feel very sure that "iBelieve In Bigfoot" will have you laughing out loud a lot.  The cast is performing at their best, and they're just hilarious in it.

One more thing you might notice – this episode is in WIDESCREEN, unlike most iCarly episodes.  Usually, only the one-hour episodes are in widescreen.

And now, here's the scene-by-scene breakdown of Fun Facts!

*** Scene 1 *** 
Scene begins in Carly's apartment.  Sam is on the couch watching TV, then Carly and Freddie walk downstairs wearing awesome 1980's costumes.

• How GREAT are the 1980's costumes?!?  Carly looks adorable and very Madonna-esque.

• As you'll see, Freddie is dressed like Michael Jackson from Thriller.  When I told Kris (our head costumer) that I wanted Freddie to be dressed just like Michael Jackson from Thriller, she came back to me a couple of days later and said, "Daniel, I'm sorry, but I've checked everywhere and the costume doesn't exist in Los Angeles – I can't find it."  I said (like a whiny child), "Come on!  Yes you can!"  When she tried to protest, I gave her my pouty face.  She sighed and said, "Okaaaay, I'll figure it out."  And then... she basically MADE the costume.  That's how great Kris and our wardrobe department are. :)

• A new Penny-Tee on Sam!  Her hair blocks it (the top word) in this scene.  Can you tell what her shirt says?  If you can, tell me in the comments, below!

• Very early in this scene, you'll see the credit: Supervising Producer, Robin Weiner.  As some of you may know, Robin has been my producer for over 11 years now – since The Amanda Show.  She's as important as it gets.  Anyway, just remember her name – you'll know why soon. :)

• When we (the writers) first started talking about this story, Sam was the one who believed in Bigfoot, and Carly was the one saying that Bigfoot was just a myth.  But that seemed too obvious to me.  So, I switched it.  I decided it would be more interesting (and less predictable) if Carly was the one who believed in Bigfoot.

• If you watch a lot of iCarly, you know that Sam's mom dates a lot of men.  Now, we learn that long list included "Gwoojie" a tall pygmy.  I kinda love the name "Gwoojie".  Don't you? :)

• I love how Spencer swings his head (and body) when he says "I got water in my ear!"  I swear, Jerry Trainor can make the line "Hello" funny.  The guy's a comedy genius.

• I'm sorry to tell you, the beave-coon is not a real animal.  I made that up for this episode.  So, if you ever actually see a real beave-coon – an animal with the head of a beaver and the body of a raccoon – I will give you one million dollars.

• Do you want to see the videos of Sam's mom and Gwoojie?  I sure do!

• There's a very nice Gibby surprise at the end of this scene.  Do you know who he's supposed to be dressed like?  To find out, highlight the area between the two red X's below:

X The lead singer from the 1980's band "Flock of Seagulls" X

• I love the little touches that we, at Schneider's Bakery, add to the scenes.  Please notice the PHONE that Gibby is holding.  For you younger people reading this, that's what cell phones looked like in the mid-to-late 1980's.  The Motorola "brick" phone.  Huge and heavy

*** Scene 2 ***
Scene begins in the school hallway with Sam walking to her locker.

Of course Sam has a working crock pot in her locker.  And she's cooking gumbo.  Why?  Because I friggin' love gumbo.  GOOD gumbo.  It's not easy to find good gumbo in Los Angeles.  Luckily, there's one restaurant in L.A. not too far from my house (in a town called Calabasas) that has great gumbo.  Maybe I'll go there tonight.  I think I will.

• Once again, we have the character "Shawn" appearing.  He's been on iCarly a few times now.  I'm not sure, but I think the first time we saw "Shawn" was when Freddie got kicked out of the Matheletes.  But I'm not sure what episode that was – maybe the one where Freddie said he didn't think "Fred" was funny?  Help me out, iCarly fans!  Comment below.

• The bull-horn that both Sam and Carly use in this scene didn't really work.  We recorded their dialogue normally, and then "affected it" in post, so it sounds like their voices are coming through a bull-horn.  Cool, huh?

• In the original script, the book was called Bigfoot: Myth or Real?  But then we decided it would be funny if the title were Bigfoot: True or Real?  So that's what we went with.

• I absolutely love Sam's "Jumping the shark" line.  I hope most of you know what that means.  As I mentioned earlier, the reason that line is in the show is... I said the same thing when I first heard this episode suggested by one of my writers. :)

• And look who's back –  MISS BRIGGS!  I love having her on iCarly because, of course, she was a major part of the the iCarly Pilot episode.  Miss Briggs played by the supremely talented Mindy Sterling.  Love her!

• Notice how Freddie says "Loud!" at the end of this scene?  That's very much like something I'd have written for Josh Peck in Drake & Josh.

*** Scene 3 ***
Scene begins with Sam in the iCarly studio, with Carly and Sam doing a "cooking" demonstration.

• Yep, that's real mozzarella cheese.

• What's better than Gibby Parmesan?  Maybe nothing?

• Gibby says, "Now that's Italian" – that's a famous line from a TV commercial when I was a little kid.  It was for Ragu spaghetti sauce.

• By the way – all the food on Gibby is real food.  That's real spaghetti sauce and real mozzarella cheese.  So, I guess we actually did make Gibby Parmesan.

• In Mexico, Bigfoot isn't really called "El-Foo-tah-jee-gantico" – that's just something I made up. The way Nathan ("Freddie") says it cracks me up. :)

• Yep, we bought the website beavecoon.org – which (I think) will just re-direct you to iCarly.com.  Sneaky.

• The drawing of the beave-coon that Spencer is holding was drawn by Lane Napper.  Lane is the guy who danced with Sam in the iCarly episode "iWas A Pageant Girl" – and he also plays "Lane," the guidance counselor and choreographer on Victorious.  We all love Lane!

*** Scene 4 ***
Scene begins in Carly's apartment with Carly at the computer and Freddie on the couch.

• I absolutely love Spencer's line "I once met a freaky rabbi in Vegas."  I think I love it because it makes me think, "Okay, so what happened in Vegas?!?"

• You'll hear Spencer mention "the University of Fresno".  I don't know if there is such a University – maybe.  Sometimes people ask me why I make fun of Fresno on my shows.  I don't make fun of it.  I just think the name "Fresno" sounds kind of funny, so I tend to use it in my shows.  People of Fresno -- do not be offended!  I love you guys! :)

• Freddie tells us he's watching a TV show called "Celebrities Under Water".  That's not a real show.  I made it up, and I've used it several times in my various series.  I think it was first mentioned on Drake & Josh.  It's my way of mocking the ridiculous reality shows that use celebrities.  But come on, admit it – if there really was a TV show called "Celebrities Under Water" you'd watch it.  Admit it! :)

• A hot dog place called "Robin's Weiner's" – that's not a real place.  It's is a major shout-out of love to our AWESOME Supervising Producer, the lovely and brilliant Ms. Robin Weiner.  Her name is mentioned about a billion times in this episode.

• Poor  David Schwimmer.

• A nice shout-out to Ryan Seacrest.  My wife and I are big fans of Ryan's.  I'd love to have him on iCarly.  Feel free to tweet at Ryan and let him know that.  He has an open invitation to be on iCarly, anytime.

*** Scene 5 ***
Scene begins with Spencer driving Carly, Sam, and Freddie (in Socko's RV) down the highway.

• I love how Spencer yells "Honking for Robin's Weiners!"  Jerry Trainor never fails to make me laugh out loud.

• This may blow your mind, but none of the iCarly actors were ever in the RV when it was actually driving.  That's all done with post production effects.  Pretty amazing, huh?  It looks totally real.  That's because Schneider's Bakery has the best post production department in show business.  Thanks, Joe Catania!!!


*** Scene 6 ***
Scene begins at night with Spencer driving and parking the RV in Mount Bakery National Forest.

• How great is it that Sam actually fell asleep while eating one of Robin's Weiners?  Only Sam Puckett.

• I love that, when Sam wakes up, she immediately (instinctively) starts chewing.

• After Freddie says, "Motion-activated night-vision wireless cameras" -- the SOUND that SAM MAKES makes me laugh out loud, every time.

• FYI: You can't really get water out of a person's ear by using a turkey baster.  I made that up.  Don't try this at home!  :)

• I love the shot where Carly, Sam, Freddie, and Spencer run back into the RV, then suddenly open the window shades.  Very cool, funny shot.

• I think you will laugh at how Spencer says "Bummer".

• How cute is it when Carly hears someone calling her name, then turns and says, "Bigfoot?"  So cute.

• Ah!  Random Spanish from Freddie!  Why?!?  What does it all mean?  WHY DOES FREDDIE SPEAK SPANISH RANDOMLY?  (P.S. I know.  And one day, it shall be revealed!)

*** Scene 7 *** 
Scene begins in the RV with Carly and Freddie looking out, through binoculars.

• I love the way Carly says "Oh" when she realizes the squirrels aren't really wrestling.

• Ya gotta love Spencer Shay dressed in camouflage.

• I also love how Carly says "Don't talk about it!" when Spencer mentions the squirrels.

*** Scene 8 ***  
Scene begins on Freddie's computer screen, where we see what Spencer is seeing, deep in the woods.
• I love the way Spencer says, "Come to Spencer ya little freaks of nature."

• How great is Nathan's ("Freddie's") delivery of the line, "Well... this is a Scooby Doo moment"?  Nathan rocks.  And guess what: He just got a brand new silver Camaro (in real life)!

• We did several takes of Sam smacking the book out of Dr. Van Gurbin's hand.  In this take (the one I used in the show), the book happened to come flying straight at the camera – so funny.  Had to use it. :)

• At the end of this scene, when Spencer comes running out of the woods and tells the kids what happened (about his encounter with Bigfoot), if you don't laugh out loud, contact your doctor because you've passed away.

*** Scene 9 ***
Scene begins deep in the woods, with Carly, Sam, and Freddie looking around for Spencer.

• This scene was actually shot inside our stage during the daytime – but it totally looks like we shot it outside in the woods at night.  "Outside" sets like this can look really bad and cheesy unless they're done right.  So, thanks to Schneider's Bakery's AWESOME art department for creating "deep woods" that look completely real and believable.  Not an easy thing to pull off.

• Look closely at Spencer's finger – you'll actually see blood on it.  Ya gotta love that attention to detail. :)

• OMG.  A "real" beave-coon!  Didn't expect THAT, did ya?  That animal was created with special effects.  And the hissing sound you hear it make is actually done by Jerry Trainor.

• So... who do YOU think stole their RV?  Hmmm? :)

*** End Credits *** 
Gibby and Spencer, wearing sunglasses, on the couch.

• Watch these two silly, wonderful idiots tell you to go to iCarly.com "in song".  It's pretty darn funny.


That wraps up the Fun Facts and behind-the-scenes info for "iBelieve In Bigfoot".


Here we go with the Fun Facts for tonight's episode of Victorious!!!

*** Tori The Zombie ***

This is a FANTASTIC episode of Victorious.  I know that a lot of you missed Ariana Grande ("Cat") in last week's episode, "Jade Dumps Beck" – but don't worry!  There's a ton of "Cat" in this new episode, and she's hilarious in it.  The combination of "Cat" and "Trina" (Daniella Monet) is comedy gold.

And... you'll get to see Victoria ("Tori") sing and perform a great song called "Finally Falling".  As you know, Victoria doesn't sing and perform in every episode of Victorious, but this is one of them, so it's one you don't wanna miss.  She's amazing in it, as usual.  If you'd like to watch her record her actual vocals for the song, you can see some of it by CLICKING HERE.

Lots of Victorious fans keep writing to me and saying that they love the show, and that the episodes keep getting better and better.  I feel pretty sure that "Tori The Zombie" will continue that trend.  I hope so!

Oh, and get this: You'll be seeing this episode even before VICTORIA sees it!  Because, right now, she's in Europe, vacationing with Avan Jogia ("Beck").  Victoria has never seen this episode, so you get to see it before even she does.

And now, here's the scene-by-scene breakdown of Fun Facts...

*** Scene 1 ***
Scene begins in the Black Box Theater.  A teacher is conducting a rehearsal of a play that Tori and Robbie are acting in.

• The teacher "Marty" is played by a fantastic actor named Adam Kulbersh.  He's extremely funny and a really nice guy.  Fun side note: Adam came very close to getting the role of "Sikowitz".  But, as you know, "Sikowitz" went to another phenomenal actor: Eric Lange. 

• The guy up on the balcony working the lights is a character named "Sinjin" – you've seen him in several episodes.  The first time I wrote the Sinjin character into a Victorious script it was just a small part – a one-time thing (I thought).  But the actor who plays him, Mikey Reid, is so great and funny, I ended up casting him in almost every episode of Victorious.  The exact same thing happened on iCarly a couple of years ago with Noah Munck who plays "Gibby".  When I come across a fantastic comedic actor, I hang on to 'em. :)

• Jade's line, "No!  Fifteen years ago you're mother gave birth to the wrong thing!" – that line was not in the script.  I added that on stage while we were filming this scene.

• Would YOU like a vibrating hairbrush?  I think I might.

• Yep – Sinjin actually has a vibrating hairbrush in this scene.  Of course he does.

*** Scene 2 ***
Scene begins in the makeup classroom at Hollywood Arts, with Tori walking in, looking for Cat.

• Tori's line, "Ohhh... well that is special, and I have been affected" – that line was not in the script.  I added it on stage while we were filming this scene.

• Does anyone say "Yay" as cutely as Cat? :)

• Major kudos to our makeup department (headed up by the incredibly talented Michael Johnston) for the great specialty makeup on the guys' faces in this scene!

*** Scene 3 ***
Scene begins in Tori's house.  Tori is on her groovy red couch, practicing her song with Andre.

• Everyone who works on Victorious loved the whole run where Andre is making Tori sing like an old jazz singer.  It was really cute and fun to watch.

• It's so funny how Cat says, "Ooo, that's so creative!  Do Tori now!"  Love it.

• This is the 3rd or 4th time in Victorious we've suggested that Cat's brother is... um... very strange.  Maybe one day we should meet him in an episode.  What actor do you think should play Cat's brother?  I'll tell you this: Ariana ("Cat") Grande wants it to be Kenan Thompson.  That would be an interesting choice, huh? :)

• The zombie makeup on Tori's face is actually the amazing work of our head makeup man, Michael Johnston.  Michael is a wonderful guy, and I think Michael has worked with me longer than anyone else on our staff and crew!  I'm pretty sure that Michael has done makeup for every show I've ever done for Nickelodeon – and that's SEVEN DIFFERENT TV SERIES!

• Before Michael ever put the zombie makeup on Victoria's face, he tested it on my assistant's face.  Her name is Molly and she's terrific (and brave!).  Here's a pic I took with my iPhone of Molly, right after we showed the makeup job to Victioria:

• The writers and I spent a good half-hour thinking of what the glue should be called.  We finally landed on "Grizzly Glue" – sounds like a real product, doesn't it?

• Victoria, Daniella, and Ariana are HILARIOUS together in this scene!  Especially the last 2 minutes.  So fun.

*** Scene 4 ***
Scene begins with Cat and Trina trying to get the zombie makeup off Tori's face (unsuccessfully).

• Again, Victoria, Daniella, and Ariana are HILARIOUS together in this scene together.

• It makes me laugh out loud when Tori grabs Cat and screams "Because I'm a rotting zombie!!!"

• Leon ("Andre") makes me laugh how he walks in with the pizza, sees the 3 girls screaming at each other, then just turns around and casually walks out with it.


*** Scene 5 ***
Scene begins with Cat (pacing) and Trina (lying on the couch) with both girls on the phone, talking to different people.
• Tori's line "And my nose itches and I can't scratch it!" – that line was not in the script.  I added in on stage while we were filming this scene.

• Hmmm.  What kind of "minor cosmetic surgery" does Trina want???

• If you want to see just how great an actress Victoria Justice is... try saying this line as fast as she said it: "Well did you tell him that I'm starring in a play tomorrow night that was written by Sofia Michelle and that Sofia Michelle is gonna be there and that I'm supposed to be beautiful and not look like a walking dead person who wants to eat people's brains?!" – see if you can say it with the speed and intensity Victoria did.  Good luck. :)

• I love how Cat says "I don't know" – it's just really cute and funny.

• Bakersfield is a real town – and it is about a 2 hour drive from Los Angeles.  I have no idea what's there.

• See the two little Sunshine girls?  See their yellow outfits?  I think we first saw those yellow Sunshine Girl outfits in an episode of iCarly – the one where Spencer was trying to date a shy Sunshine Girl's mom.  Remember?

• The two little girls did a great job of reacting with terror, screaming, and running away.  They were really cute and funny.

*** Scene 6 ***
Scene begins in the Black Box Theater with all the kids rehearsing a musical number for the play.

• The song they're singing is called "Finally Falling" – it was written and produced by Michael Corcoran, the musical genius who does all the music for all my shows.  Michael is truly brilliant!  You'll hear much more of this song later in the episode.

• This is the first time we see Trina and Cat driving in a car.  When we (the writers and I) started writing this scene, we had no idea how funny Ariana and Daniella would be together.  These car scenes in "Tori The Zombie" are amazingly fun and funny to watch. :)

• Why is it so darn funny whenever Trina screams "Shut up!" at someone?  Maybe we shouldn't question it.  Let's just enjoy the funniness.

• Listen closely to the ring-tone sound.  Can you guess what song that is?  If you can, please comment below!

• This Fun Fact has nothing to do with this scene, but... did you know that Daniella ("Trina") is, in real life, highly trained in Karate?  It's true.  Don't mess with Daniella Monet!

• There is lots of horn honking by Trina in this scene.  But when we shot the scene, the real car horn was disconnected (so it wouldn't contaminate the girls' dialogue).  All the horn honk sounds were added in post production.

*** Scene 7 ***
Scene begins in the Black Box Theater with Sophia Michelle (the playwright) walking in and meeting Marty (the teacher) and Lane.

• Since Robbie is one of the students starring in the play, of course he makes sure that Rex has a nice, front row seat.  I love the look that Sophia Michelle (after she sits down) gives Rex.

• Jade's line "We're indoors – lose the scarf" – that line was not in the script.  I added it while we were on stage filming this scene.

• I think it's hilarious that, even though Cat and Trina know that Tori is desperate to get the glue solvent, they still stopped to get ice cream.

• There is no real place called "Fweezy Queen" – I made up that name.  But now, I kind of want to go there.

*** Scene 8 ***  
This very short scene begins with Sophia Michelle and the rest of the audience watching the play – Robbie and another guy are performing a scene, sitting in big peach-colored wing chairs.

• I really enjoy how Matt Bennett ("Robbie") plays his obnoxious rich guy character in the play.  He's so funny.

• All the women who work on Victorious thought that Avan ("Beck") looked extremely cute in his bell boy uniform.  Do you?  And what do you think about Beck's hair?  Too much?  Or just right?  Comment below!

• At the very end of this scene, I love the look on Lane's face as he hands the nervous teacher his bottle of water.

*** Scene 9 ***
This short scene begins with Trina and Cat in the car – the girls are singing a song together.

• During rehearsals of this scene, Trina and Cat were actually singing "Baby Got Back" by Sir Mix-A-Lot.  But that song was too expensive to use, so Michael Corcoran (our brilliant music composer) wrote a new song for Cat and Trina to sing, instead.  It's awesome!  And if you want to hear it RIGHT NOW, just CLICK HERE!

• I love that Cat won't sing the next line because it's "dirty".  I wonder what the line was?  Can you guess?

*** Scene 10 ***
Scene begins back on stage in the Black Box Theater with Tori and Robbie doing a scene on stage together.

• Nice fall by Matt Bennett ("Robbie") – and that's really him.  No stunt double was used.

• Get ready to hear an amazing musical performance by Victoria Justice.  The song is called "Finally Falling", written and produced by Michael Corcoran.  It's a great song, and Vic did an AMAZING job singing it!

• Yep, that's really Avan Jogia ("Beck") singing his part.  I bet you didn't know he could sing too, did ya?  Well, that's his voice.  No tricks. :)

• I don't know how or why, but Leon ("Andre") just looks incredibly cool whenever he's playing music.  In future episodes of Victorious, you're going to see what Leon can REALLY do, singing and playing.  He's incredible .

• Cat actually thought Tori would take the time to have some Fweezy Queen ice cream.  What is wrong with Cat's brain?  Maybe we'll find out in some future episode. :)

• Victoria (in real life) was so happy to finally get that zombie makeup off her face.  The poor girl had to wear it for HOURS during shooting.  The scene where Cat and Trina get it off her face was shot late at night... it was the last scene we shot that day.

• Watch Avan ("Beck") do the cool somersault and slide forward on his knees.  He did that himself.  The shot looks so cool, I used it in the main titles of Victorious.

• Vic did an AMAZING job with her vocal performance in "Finally Falling" – and it's a very catchy tune.  In fact, as I'm siting here typing these Fun Facts, I can hear my wife Lisa singing "Finally Falling" in the kitchen.  It's contagious!

*** Scene 11 ***
Scene begins on stage with Sophia Michelle walking on to speak to the cast about their performance.

• The actor who played Sophia Michelle did a GREAT job in this episode.  Her real name is Rachel Quaintance.  Awesome actor.

•  The very last shot we did for this episode was the whole gang on stage, dancing wildly to the disco music.  It was a bit past midnight, and we were ALL exhausted (especially the actors) because it had been a long, tough week of rehearsing and filming.  But everyone pulled it together and found the energy to disco dance for a few minutes.  It was really fun. :)


And THAT, my friends, wraps up the Fun Facts for both episodes: "iBelieve In Bigfoot" and "Tori The Zombie".  I really hope you love both episodes.

Thank you so much for watching.  Let me know what you think.  Please comment below!!!

–Dan :)

P.S. Remember: If you know of any Victorious or iCarly fans you think might enjoy reading these fun behind-the-scenes faces, please send them this URL: www.DanWarp.com

P.P.S. Please tell your friends who like iCarly and/or Victorious (or don't know about the shows yet) to follow me on Twitter: @DanWarp