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Last Updated: Friday, 12 March, 2004, 12:18 GMT
Past and present unite in Starsky
By Caroline Westbrook
BBC News Online

Starsky & Hutch cast
New and old cast members are united in Starsky And Hutch
Hot on the heels of Charlie's Angels, Lost In Space and The Brady Bunch Movie comes Starsky And Hutch, the latest TV show to undergo a big-screen makeover.

The 2004 version sees Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson stepping in where Paul Michael Glaser and David Soul left off, as the eponymous mismatched cops.

The film took nearly $30m (16m) at the US box office in its first weekend.

A prequel to the TV series, it sees Starsky And Hutch take on their first ever assignment as partners.

Co-stars include rapper Snoop Dogg taking on the role of Huggy Bear - played in the original TV show by Antonio Fargas - and Vince Vaughn, as drug dealing bad guy Reese Feldman.

Casting

The idea of making the show into a movie first surfaced in 2001, but as director Todd Phillips points out, it was the cast that really attracted him to the project.

"I was a fan of the show but it was more the opportunity to work with Ben and Owen. My way into a movie is always the casting of it," he says.

While Stiller was always linked to the role of Starsky, Vince Vaughn was originally tipped to play Hutch, before Owen Wilson was eventually cast in late 2002.

The film marks the sixth time that Stiller and Wilson have worked together, following collaborations on the likes of Meet The Parents, The Royal Tenenbaums and Zoolander.
Starsky & Hutch
It is the sixth time Wilson and Stiller have starred together

Wilson admits that working with Stiller on such a regular basis is definitely an advantage.

Humour

"It means I'm working with someone I can rely on who's not just going to do good stuff but is going to have good ideas for me also and have similar taste and sense of humour," he explains.

For Stiller, meanwhile, the biggest challenge was trying to emulate Paul Michael Glaser - something he achieved by watching endless episodes of the show on set between takes.

"I didn't really know what to do so I watched Paul Michael Glaser because he was so cool, as a kid I was a fan of his," Stiller reveals.

"I tried to do what he did and then realised I couldn't. So instead Owen and I just tried to develop our own relationship which would work on screen."

As far as the original stars of the show are concerned though, Stiller and Wilson have done a good job.

Twinkle

"I liked Ben's energy, he captured an awful lot of Starsky's mannerisms, and he had a real twinkle in his eye," says Paul Michael Glaser, while David Soul is similarly enthusiastic about Wilson.
Paul Michael Glaser and David Soul
David Soul and Paul Michael Glaser appear in the film

"Owen marches to his own drummer and he does it really well. He's terrific, you're not quite sure what he's going to do. He's also a really decent human being, which is nice."

Both Glaser and Soul make cameo appearances in the film, something Phillips was particularly keen on.

"It was really nice to see them get back into the clothes and stand next to the car, and it really works in the movie. It's a round of applause moment."

And although the tone of the film is very different - tossing aside the more dramatic elements of the TV show in favour of something altogether more comedic - the original stars still approve of the end result.

"The show allowed us to break ground as a buddy cop show and explore many many levels," Glaser explains.

"I think doing a movie today and trying to capture all the things we did in the 1970s would be like trying to recreate the 70s, and that's impossible."


SEE ALSO:
Retro premiere for Starsky stars
12 Mar 04  |  Entertainment
Starsky stars reunite for caravans
03 Nov 03  |  Entertainment
Game revives old TV show
26 Jul 03  |  Technology
Starsky star 'angry' over remake
02 May 03  |  Entertainment


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