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Saturday, January 18, 2014

FUN FACTS! Sam & Cat: #TheKillerTunaJump

FUN FACTS for...

Sam & Cat #TheKillerTunaJump  #Freddie #Jade #Robbie

(airs Saturday night – January 18th – 8:00 PM on Nick – 7:00 PM central)

by Dan Schneider

Wow, it's been a while since I've written Fun Facts.  As I've mentioned before, I love writing them for you.  The thing is, it takes me HOURS to write them.  And I've been so busy writing scripts and doing other work, it's hard for me to find time to write the Fun Facts.  Anyway...

Less than 24 hours from now -- Saturday, January 18th at 8:00 PM (7:00 PM central) -- we premiere the new Sam & Cat one-hour special event called #TheKillerTunaJump.  And as many of you already know, it reunites some former cast members from iCarly and Victorious!

I was so excited when we came up with the idea for this one-hour special.  And I was even more psyched when I contacted Nathan Kress (“Freddie” from iCarly), and Liz Gillies ("Jade" from Victorious), and Matt Bennett ("Robbie" from Victorious)… and they were all eager to come back and reprise their roles on Sam & Cat.

And that's one of the reasons the whole idea of creating Sam & Cat excited us when the idea came about to spin those two characters off on their own show.  I loved making iCarly and Victorious -- and I knew that Sam & Cat would be a way for those "worlds" to continue on.  We'd always have the opportunity to bring back the stars of iCarly and Victorious for special events.  Now, it's happening.

Okay, before I get to the Fun Facts...



If you read on, you will learn some information about what happens in tonight's Sam & Cat special.

I'm not going to reveal too much, but still... you might want to wait and read these Fun Facts after you watch it.

When you're done reading all this, please tell your friends about these Fun Facts, and that they can come here to read them.  Thanks! 

Okay.  Here we go with the scene-by-scene FUN FACTS...

••• Scene 1 •••
Scene begins in Sam and Cat's kitchen, with Sam dumping a bunch of ingredients into a large pot on the stove.

------> After Sam says "There's like a billion sauces in the world, right?" -- you see her drink soy sauce, right out of the bottle.  That bit was not in the script.  I added it while we were filming the scene.  The liquid in the bottle is actually grape juice.

------> You see Sam give Cat a taste of her new all-purpose sauce.  That "sauce" was actually a smoothie, prepared by our excellent prop department.  I'm told it contained fruit and vegetables.

••• Scene 2 •••
Scene begins in Bots restaurant, after hours.  Dice is playing poker with a bunch of guys (and Tandy, the red robot waiter).

------> Sitting next to Dice is the character "B.J." -- he made his first appearance on Sam & Cat in the episode #TextingCompetition.  We brought him back because he's really funny and a great kid.  And what's better than a character who obsessed with hard boiled eggs so much that he wears a salt shaker around his neck?

------> In real life, the kid who plays the role of B.J. (Cyrus Arnold) does not like eggs.

------> Do you know who does the VOICE of Tandy, the red robot?  If you do, tweet me on Twitter (@DanWarp), and tell me who you think it is.

------> We all love the Spear Fisherman character.  He's played by a terrific actor named Steve Lewis.  His first appearance on Sam & Cat was in the episode #OscarTheOuch.  Since then, we've brought "Spear Fisherman" back for several more episodes, including this one.  

------> In our scripts, his name is "Brody" -- but I don't think his name has ever been mentioned in an episode.  
SIDEBAR TRIVIA:  On one of my previous shows, Drake & Josh, the dad's name was "Walter"… but the mom's first name was never mentioned (never spoken) in ANY episode of Drake & Josh.  However, her name was always in our scripts.  Do you know what her name was? 
------> Also at the card game: Randy!  The actor's real name is Nick, and he's such a great kid.  We first brought "Randy" onto Sam & Cat in the episode #TextingCompetition.  It was a small part -- we never intended to make "Randy" a recurring character.  But he cracks us up -- and everyone loves him -- so we keep bringing "Randy" back on Sam & Cat.  Look for him in more episodes to come.  

------> I love how Randy always pointlessly identifies himself by saying "I'm Randy!" for no real reason.  The first time I did a bit like that was in the original All That, which ran on Nickelodeon from 1994 – 2005.  We created a character called "Detective Dan" back in 1995, played by the extremely funny actor, Josh Server.  The character would often blurt out, "I'm Detective Dan!" randomly (for no reason).  Now, "Randy" does kind of the same thing: "I'm Raaaaaandy."  It makes no sense, but it's funny.

••• Scene 3 •••
Scene begins back in Sam and Cat's kitchen, with Sam and Cat continuing their conversation with Dice.

------> After Dice sighs and says "You don't get it" -- it's so funny how Sam responds with her own sigh and says "I don't want it.”  I love how Jennette played that.  But Jennette delivering a comedy line brilliantly comes as no surprise.

------> Okay, in case you're wondering if Kansas Razorback Tunafish actually exist… they don't.  The Sam & Cat writers and I made them up.  They're loosely based on piranha fish, which I learned about when I was a kid, watching a James Bond movie with my dad.  You can read about piranha fish here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Piranha

------> In this scene, Cat asks, "Why would a tunafish wanna eat me?" -- and Dice responds, "I don't know -- revenge?"  This is a reference to a joke between my wife and me.  

Lisa (Hungry Girl) and I love sushi.  We often go out for sushi 3 times a week, and sometimes even more.  So, a running joke between Lisa and me is that we can never swim in the ocean again, because we eat so much fish, we fear that their fish cousins will seek revenge by trying to eat US :)

------> It's so great to see JADE return in this scene!!!  We all love working with Liz Gillies.  She's such a pro, and her acting is really smart, and funny.  Even though it's been a year since she played Jade on Victorious, she instantly slipped right back into the role.  And as always, she plays the part perfectly.  No other actress could play Jade so well.

------> On Victorious, I always felt that Cat/Jade scenes were awesome and really funny.  I remember the first scene we did with Jade driving Cat in a car (an episode titled “Car, Rain & Fire”).  Ariana and Liz were hilarious together in the car.

------> Another reason we were excited to have Jade on Sam & Cat is: we always felt it would be great to have scenes with SAM and JADE together.  Their characters share some similarities -- tough, cool, fearless, scary -- but there are differences, too.  We knew it would be interesting to see if they bonded… or clashed.  You'll see soon.

By the way: many people ask me who would win in physical fight between Sam and Jade?  The answer is so obvious, I don't even need to tell you.  Do I?

------> Remember: Sam & Cat is set in Los Angeles.  And in this world, both Cat and Jade still go to school together at Hollywood Arts.  So, it makes perfect sense that Jade could (and would) visit Cat's apartment.  In this scene, you'll find out why you've never seen Cat invite Jade over before.  Can you guess why?  If you have a good guess, tweet me on Twitter (@DanWarp), and tell me.

------> When Cat takes Jade out into the atrium to talk, you'll see that Sam and Cat's apartment is number 22.  The reason: 22 is my wife Lisa's favorite number. 

••• Main Titles •••
By main titles, I mean the opening sequence of shots that go along with the theme song.

------> Watch the main titles carefully.  You'll notice some fun changes for this one-hour Sam & Cat special.

••• Scene 4 •••
Scene opens with Cat lying face down on the floor of her apartment.  It continues with Cat running into her bedroom, alarmed and worried about what might be happening between Sam and Jade.

------> The video game that Sam and Jade are playing doesn't actually exist in real life.

------> In this scene, we learn why Cat never wanted Sam and Jade to meet.  Why do you think?

------> Jade makes a joke where she says "wharf speed" -- a reference to "warp speed" -- which further reveals what many of you already know about me: I'm a huge fan of Star Trek, especially the original series.  It's one of my favorite TV shows of all time.  

I often still watch the original Star Trek, to this day.  A couple of nights ago I watched one of my all-time favorite episodes, "Mirror Mirror".  I just wish I could have met Star Trek's creator, Gene Roddenberry -- such a genius.  Okay, enough of my nerdishness.  Back to Sam & Cat…

••• Scene 5 •••
Scene opens at Fisherman's Wharf, outside.  We see the huge tank containing the dangerous tunafish that Dice doesn't know what to do with.

------> How cool is it to see Sam and Jade ride up together on Sam's motorcycle?

------> Sam's motorcycle was first revealed in the final episode of iCarly (“iGoodbye”).  As you might remember, Spencer gave it to Sam.  

In fact, the very last shot of iCarly shows Sam riding off on this black motorcycle.  And she's riding it the first time we see Sam in the pilot of Sam & Cat.  

In my head, that motorcycle represents Sam's transition from iCarly to Sam & Cat.  I planned this when I was writing iGoodbye.

------> Sam's motorcycle is often referred as a 1964 Sterling.  In real life, it's a modified 2010 Triumph Bonneville T100 motorcycle.  Such a cool bike.  

------> The bit where the man gives Dice a shove… that was not in the script.  We came up with that bit while we were filming this scene.  It made us all laugh, because it's so random and unexpected.

------> How cool is it when Sam looks at the tank of water, suddenly thrusts her hand into it, and then pulls out a live fish?!?  Only Jennette McCurdy.  Do you know how she was able to do that?  If you do, tweet me your answer on Twitter @DanWarp.

------> It makes me laugh hard when Cat screams "YOU'RE from Kansas!!!"

------> I like the new restaurant name we came up with for this episode -- a new salad place called Lettuce Eat Lunch.  Ha.  There are probably a lot of people in Hollywood who'd love a lunch place that's all about lettuce.


••• Scene 6 •••
Scene opens with Sam and Jade at Bots Restaurant, sitting in a booth together, having lunch.

------> The trick that Sam and Jade play on Tandy (the red robot)… that's a trick I often play on people.  I say something, but I intentionally mumble some fake words (nonsense words), and then I watch the confusion on people's faces as they try to figure out what I just said.  I know… I'm not normal.  But it's fun. :)

------> The way that Tandy (the red robot) gets confused and then blows up -- that's a nod to something that happens in an episode of the original Star Trek -- in an episode titled "The Changeling".  

------> Do you know who does the VOICE of Bungle, the BLUE robot?  If you think you know, tweet me on Twitter (@DanWarp), and tell me who you think it is.

------> In this scene, Cat continues getting more upset and jealous about the growing friendship between Sam and Jade.  I'm curious to know what YOU think about that, after you watch this special.  Do you think Cat is RIGHT to feel so upset?  Or do you think Cat is acting irrationally?  (There was some debate about this among the writers, so I want to know what YOU think.  Tweet me @DanWarp on Twitter.)

••• Scene 7 •••
Scene opens with Cat sitting or her bed, then Sam comes in wearing a robe.

------> The picture of the black-and-white rabbit on the wall behind Cat is Cookie Bunny.  Cookie was my bunny for 10 years (1999 to 2009).  Cookie was magical -- such a sweet, cute, fun little friend.  My wife Lisa and I loved her like a child.  Cookie appeared in episodes of The Amanda Show, Drake & Josh, Zoey 101, All That, and more.  I miss her a lot.

------> When Cat says "A little song called Who Needs Cat" -- notice how she puts her fist up to her chin.  That's Ariana doing her impression of Matt Bennett.  Ariana and Matt are good friends, and she often has fun imitating his style of delivery.  You'll notice Ariana doing this in various episodes of Victorious, and on Sam & Cat.

------> Ariana's delivery of her line "I like it upside down" is just hilarious.

------> When Sam goes into the shower, you can hear her singing.  If you listen closely, you might recognize the song -- it's the rap song that she and Ariana sang when they were playing "Rap Attack" in the Sam & Cat episode #BabysitterWar.  Another great song by our musical genius, Michael Corcoran (@BackHouseMike).

------> I gotta tell ya… we've screened this episode for a few people, and everyone gets emotional (in a good way) when we cut to the iCarly hallway to see FREDDIE ENTER.  iCarly was such a huge part of our lives… so just seeing that set again was kind of magical for us.  I hope it is for you, too.

------> I think Nathan is going to become a huge movie star or something… because it's very unusual to find a young actor who's that handsome AND that comedically talented.  Usually, guy actors either have "leading man good looks," OR they have great comedy skills and timing.  Nathan has it all.  I wish I could buy stock in Nathan Kress, Inc.

------> It's cute to see how Freddie gets kind of nervous when he thinks it's Sam calling him, and how he tries to act all cool when he says hello to her into his Pear Phone.  Hmmm… what does this tell us? ;)

------> And a SURPRISE APPEARANCE by MRS. BENSON!!!  It was so great to work with Mary Scheer again.  She was thrilled to step back into the role of Freddie's insanely over-protective mother.  We had a lot of fun filming her scene with Nathan.

------> I think this little scene between Freddie and his mom will make you laugh hard.  It's classic iCarly stuff.

------> The lines "I have an itch" and "That's not my responsibility!" weren't in the script.  I added those lines while we were filming this scene.  Nathan and Mary made them so funny!

------> I think it's interesting (and sweet) how Freddie, as soon as he hears that Sam was in an accident, is extremely concerned and willing to suddenly drop everything and take a trip to Los Angeles to make sure she's okay.  It shows that... despite how Sam and Freddie always bicker... deep down, he loves her.

••• Scene 8 •••
Scene opens in the kitchen with Cat drinking some pale, orange drink.

------>  I have no idea what the pale orange drink is, in the pitcher and in Cat's glass.

------> When we break dishes and glasses on TV shows, we use special props called "break-aways".  They look just like real glass, but you can smash them without creating a dangerous situation.  They make break-away glasses and bottles in hundreds of shapes and sizes.


••• Scene 9 •••
Scene opens in Bots restaurant -- Sam entering with Jade.

------> Again… do you know who does the VOICE of Bungle, the blue robot?  If you think you know, tweet me on Twitter (@DanWarp), and tell me who YOU think it is.

------> It was not in the script for Sam to pull out a hammer and go after Bungle with it.  I added that bit while we were shooting the scene.  But Sam's (Jennette's) jeans did not have pockets (or the pockets were sewn up)… so she just shoved the hammer down inside the waistband of her jeans.  McCurdy gets it DONE, son.

------> It's such classic Jade, how she gets the boys at the table to leave.  I always loved scenes on Victorious where Jade could make guys extremely nervous, just by staring at them.  Liz Gillies can totally pull that off.

------> What Jade says is not just a joke… there actually is a company in L.A. that will take you on a tour, all around the city, showing you places where famous people died.  It used to be called the Graveline Tour.  Fun for the whole family!  

••• Scene 10 •••
Scene opens just outside Sam and Cat's apartment, as Cat and Freddie walk along together, chatting.  Then they enter the apartment.

------> I like how we reference the fact that Cat "always forgets three" when she counts.  We first learned that in an episode of Victorious.  We (the other Sam & Cat writers and I) like making references to iCarly and Victorious, because we all worked on those shows and loved making them.

------> As he often does, in this scene, Freddie explains to Cat that when he starts the iCarly web show, he intentionally leaves out the "one" when he counts backwards from five ("In five, four, three, two…").  Do you know why he leaves out the one?   If you do, tweet me the answer at @DanWarp on Twitter.

------> If you're a Victorious fan, you'll QUICKLY recognize a song that's performed in this scene.

------> Ladies and gentleman, he's back: ROBBIE SHAPIRO!  Of course, "Robbie" is played by the super-talented Matt Bennett.  We had so much fun having Matt back on the set.  He is fantastic in this Sam & Cat special.  

------> Rex does not make an appearance in the Sam & Cat special.  No real reason.  We just had a lot of story to tell, and didn't have time for Rex stuff.  But no worries:  I have the real Rex, safely tucked away somewhere in a secret location with lots of other cool props from my previous TV series.  
SIDEBAR TRIVIA:  One of my most prized possessions in the green "Bottle Bot" from iCarly.  It means a lot to me, because it's the sculpture Spencer was working on when we first met him in the iCarly pilot -- and it was then seen in every episode of iCarly.  That green Bottle Bot is actually now on display in my living room.
------> I gotta say… it's pretty cute watching Sam and Cat get all jealous over Freddie and Robbie.  

------> "Fadoodling" is not a real word.  We made it up.

------> After Robbie punches Freddie in the stomach, he makes a joke about Freddie doing a lot of sit-ups.  After that, Robbie made another joke about Freddie being "yoked" -- which you might have seen in the on-air promos.  But that line isn't in the show anymore, because the special was long, and some cuts (edits) had to be made to get the show to proper time.

------> Robbie's reaction when he finds out he's being used is pretty freakin' hilarious.  Go Matt Bennett!


••• Scene 11 •••
Scene opens in Sam and Cat's kitchen.  Sam walks in from the bedroom while Cat slices pizza on the kitchen counter.

------> Cameron Ocasio ("Dice") is so great in this whole scene, and in this whole special.  That kid is such a great actor -- I predict big things for him!

------> This scene makes a person ask: Why the heck do Sam and Cat have an automatic nail gun lying around the apartment? 

••• Scene 12 •••
Scene opens at Fisherman's Wharf at night, as an announcer urges everyone to take their seats.

------> FROBBIE!!!

------> I love characters like the "guy at the wharf who screams his lines from far away".  Stuff like that often isn't in our script outlines… we just think of it as we write the script.  And then it becomes a recurring bit in the episode.  That's what happened with this character.  And the actor who plays him made it really funny.

------> Regarding the "guy at the wharf who screams his lines from far away" -- please notice what his popcorn is named (on the side of the bucket).  

••• Scene 13 •••
Scene opens back in Sam and Cat's apartment, with Cat coming out from the back wearing Sam's motorcycle jumping suit.

------> In this scene, Cat says "boozums."  I had another character use that word in another TV show I made.  Do you know what other character used the term "boozums" -- and in what circumstance?  If you know, tweet me your answer @DanWarp on Twitter.

------> During this scene, you hear Sam's voice several times from the closet.  But when we filmed the scene, Sam (Jennette) was not in the closet -- nobody was.  Sam's voice was added later in post production, and it was tweaked to sound like she was inside the closet, behind that wooden door.

••• Scene 14 •••
Scene opens at Fisherman's Wharf again, with Freddie and Robbie trying to buy tickets to watch the tunafish jump.

------>  I'm not sure why, but when Robbie says "Really?  How come fella?" -- it makes me crack up every time.  

------>  I think that people who are into Seddie will like something Freddie ALMOST says to Robbie in this scene.  He cuts himself off, but I think we all know what he was about to say. 

••• Scene 15 •••
This very short scene opens back in Sam and Cat's apartment, with Sam banging on the door, trying to get out of the closet.

------>  That is not actually Jennette's fist coming through the door.  It's her stunt double's fist.  

------>  The closet door you see in this scene is not the usual door.  That's a special "break-away" door, made to match the usual door.

••• Scene 16 •••
Scene opens at Fisherman's Wharf again, with Nona trying to get to her seat.

------>  I love Jade and Nona together in this scene.  It makes me want to write more Jade/Nona scenes.  I only wish you could hear the funny stuff they talked about BETWEEN takes.  I'm not sure they remembered they were wearing microphones, and that we could hear them. :)

------>  In case any of you Victorious fans were curious…. this scene confirms that Jade and Beck ARE still dating.  Of course they are.  They're meant to be! :)

------> Nona's "Jazz!  Jazz!  Jazz!" moment is one of the weirder little pieces of comedy, for sure.  And you gotta love Maree Cheatham, the actress who plays Nona.  Maree is SOOOO TALENTED.  And such a sweet person.

------> When Cat arrives on the motorcycle, the man holding the buckets that she chases around is named Vince Deadrick.  Vince has been our stunt coordinator since I was producing All That.  He's hired almost all the stunt men who work on my shows, and he choreographs all the stunts you see.  And Vince is still a great stunt man himself.

------>  When we were shooting this scene, it was not scripted for Cat to ride in on the motorcycle and almost run over someone.  But I felt the scene needed some extra spice (as we were filming), so I ran up to Vince and asked him if he would do a stunt -- almost get run over by Cat.  He was game for it so, together, we came up with the idea of giving him two buckets, and then we had Cat (her motorcycle-riding stunt double) chase him around and make him fall down.  Vince did it like the pro he is… and he didn't even wear protective padding.

••• Scene 17 •••
This very short scene opens back in Sam and Cat's apartment, as Sam breaks out of the closet.

------>  We had some technical problems while shooting this scene, and we ran out the break-away closet doors before we were able to get the scene shot.  So, we had to come back and shoot this scene one week later, when we had some new break-away doors ready.

------>  There was an ending to this scene that we had to cut.  Sam ran back in, opened the fridge, grabbed a turkey leg, ran back out, got on her motorcycle, then started her motorcycle.  We had to cut that part of the scene out for time (the show was too long, so we had to make some cuts).

••• Scene 18 •••
Scene opens at Fisherman's Wharf, with Cat on the red and white motorcycle, revving the engine.

------>  Cat's fake Sam voice is hilarious… because it sounds nothing like Sam.

------>  The Ringo Star bit… I have no explanation.  It's just weird.  I love it, but I admit… WEIRD.  Haha.  Maybe I did it just because I love the Beatles so much.

------>  So… do you think Cat successfully jumps the tuna??  Do ya?  Watch tonight and see!

------>  The bit with the two oranges rolling in toward the motorcycle was not in the script.  I got the idea to do that while we were filming the scene.  Just a funny little moment.

------>  Can you believe that FALL that Freddie and Robbie take into the water tank?  Do you think it was really them?

------>  About the FISH… all I'll say is… getting them to jump in and out of the water like that… NOT easy to do.

------>  Notice that Sam is willing to risk her life to save the boy she loves.  And Cat is willing to save the life of the boy she loves.  This should make some fans very happy.  (Of course, it will make some other fans angry.  Oh well… some wise person once said, "If you try to please EVERYONE, you end up please NO ONE.  Just please know… I always try my best to make as many of you happy as I can. :)

------>  Notice that it's really Jennette McCurdy who leaps into the tank of vicious tuna… it was not a stunt double.  

------>  It makes me laugh every time I see Ariana ("Cat") run into the side of that tank and knock herself unconscious.  Or as Cat Valentine says: "NON-conscious."

------>  "I'm satisfied because someone got hurt." –Jade West.  Classic.

••• Scene 19 •••
Scene opens at the hospital.

------>  I see that my post department called it St. Schneider's Hospital.  They're always adding in little things like that ("Easter eggs") to see if I'll notice them.  I didn't notice this one until just now, as I'm writing these fun facts.  I swear, our post team is the best in television.  They are why our shows look and sound so great on your TV at home.

------>  In this scene, we learn more about which guys Sam and Cat really like.  If you're interested in that, make sure you watch.

------>  This scene clearly demonstrates that Kansas Razorback Tuna can do a lot of damage to a person.  Be careful if you're swimming near some.

------>  One character says this to another character in this scene: "When your face heals up, and you can chew again, let's you and me go grab some dinner… and have some fun."  Can you guess WHO says that to WHO?  
------>  There is a GREAT Victorious reference in this scene -- a reference to a past episode.  Hardcore Victorious fans will catch it, for sure. :)

------>  We all LOVE the ending to this one-hour special.  For now I'll just say… it ends with a lovely song.  Can you guess WHO sings it to WHO?  If you can guess it, tweet me your answer: @DanWarp on Twitter.  


And that's all the Fun Facts for the Sam & Cat special: #TheKillerTunaJump #Freddie #Jade #Robbie  

Special thanks to JOE CATANIA and his post production team who worked INSANELY HARD to get this Sam & Cat special ready to air on time.  I have a feeling they're all exhausted right now.

I hope you have fun watching the show tonight (Saturday) at 8:00 PM on Nickelodeon (7:00 PM central).  After you watch it, TWEET ME and let me know your favorite parts!  I'm @DanWarp on Twitter.  Have I mentioned that enough?

Finally, thank you all for your support.  I appreciate it more than you know, and I look forward for sending lots more fun entertainment your way.

Be nice to each other.

Dan Schneider :)

P.S.  About a week ago, my wife Lisa and I got the sweetest, best new dog ever.  Her nickname is Lolly.  Here's a pic of me with her...