A lot of the filming was done at the high school in Lockhart, Texas. The football team was used and the city was told to show up for the football game and were given fake t-shirts to wear in the stands.
In 1990, David Wechter and Bruce Kimmel wrote their first draft of the script and sent it out, but there were no buyers. It wasn't until after the success of Scream (1996) that Miramax bought the script and rushed it into production. Bob Weinstein and Harvey Weinstein brought in Kevin Williamson to do rewrites, keeping the basic story, but rewriting the dialogue and adding new characters to make it more "hip". Originally, Williamson was set to direct the film, but he chose not to so he could direct his self-penned script Teaching Mrs. Tingle (1999). The Weinsteins brought in Robert Rodriguez to direct the film instead.
Elijah Wood, Clea DuVall, Jordana Brewster and Shawn Hatosy appear in the music video for "Another Brick in the Wall, part 2", performed by the Class of '99, which is featured in the film's soundtrack. In keeping with her character Stokely, Clea DuVall does not lip sync the lyrics with her co-stars.
Several scenes involving an additional character named Venus, played by Kidada Jones, were shown in TV previews for the film, as well as Tommy Hilfiger commercials, but cut from the film. She is also visible in a scene in the theatrical version, standing next to Gabe (Usher Raymond) in Mr. Furlong's (Jon Stewart) science class when they are looking at the "new species" in the aquarium.
(at around 1h 9 mins) Near the end, Marybeth refuses to take the alien drug test by saying she's allergic. Jordana Brewster's character Delilah says, "Yeah, and I'm Portuguese." In real life, Brewster is half Brazilian and can speak fluent Portuguese.
It was on the set of this film that Harry Jay Knowles first got wind of Peter Jackson making The Lord of the Rings into a movie. He urged Elijah Wood to go for it even though the actor had never read the book. Which Wood duly did, ignoring the news that Jackson was largely casting British actors and videotaped his own audition.
(at around 43 mins) In a scene where students are being called to the principal's office, one name called is Thomas Nix. In reality, Tommy Nix is one of director Robert Rodriguez's friends from college. He helped Rodriguez write his second feature Roadracers (1994).
In exchange for product placement in this film for clothier Tommy Hilfiger's fashion line, the teens from the movie's cast appeared together in a TV commercial & print ad campaign for Tommy Jeans throughout 1998.
Aliya Whiteley wrote an essay, "Revisiting Robert Rodriguez's The Faculty", which identifies the film's influences: Mix Invasion Of The Body Snatchers with The Thing. Throw in some Terminator, a spoonful of The Breakfast Club, and a pinch of The Stepford Wives, and you've got a big mess of a movie set in a school that's being taken over by a conformist alien, one teacher at a time. You've got the very funny, occasionally scary, quite gory, and extremely entertaining 1998 Robert Rodriguez film called The Faculty. Whiteley added, "It's all about examining the tropes of science fiction with a smart, funny angle. Half of the fun in this film is in identifying where you first came across a certain character's name or saw a particular special effect. For instance, there's a brilliant moment with a head on legs that I defy you to watch and not think of a certain John Carpenter film." Whitely concludes, "The Faculty is very definitely a big mess of a movie. But if you love all things sci-fi, it's a good mess." Keith Phipps described the nostalgic homage when he described the film as "a Kevin Williamson-scripted high-school variation on Invasion Of The Body Snatchers."
(at around 7 mins) At the start of the movie, Coach Willis (Robert Patrick) is seen standing at the end of a long hall, then begins running down the hall in pursuit of Principal Drake (Bebe Neuwirth). The way he runs, and the way the scene is shot (cutting back and forth between Willis running and Drake trying to open the door) mirrors a similar scene in Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991), when the T-1000--also played by Patrick--is chasing the Connors and the T-800 down a long hall while they wait for an elevator to open.
(at around 10 mins) The girl student with the black top and tan skirt who laughs at Elijah Wood getting his balls smashed into a flagpole was Austin rocker Sarah Talbot, who at the time was the front woman for The Hollywood Wife Beaters. Laughing at Wood was her idea and the director kept it in.
(at around 1h 30 mins) Among the motivational banners in the school's locker room is a sign that says "The will to win comes from within" which is particularly appropriate considering the body snatcher nature of the alien invaders taking over the staff and student body.
Each of the film's protagonists has an obvious counterpart from The Breakfast Club. Stan's counterpart is Andy, Delilah's is Claire, Casey's is Brian, Zeke's is Bender, and Stokely's is Allison... but where does Marybeth fit in, she doesn't.
(at around 36 mins) After Christopher McDonald's character (Mr. Connor) wishes Robert Patrick's (Coach Willis) good luck with the football game, Patrick shoots at McDonald with his hand. This is an homage to McDonald's famous "Shooter" McGavin character from the film Happy Gilmore (1996).
There is a scene early on that takes place at a faculty meeting, where they are deciding how to divide the school's budget. Much to the teachers' chagrin, money that could be used for buying new textbooks or putting on a School Play other than Our Townnote is instead directed towards the football team because, as Principal Drake explains, they live in a football town. She doesn't think the football team deserves all the attention and funding, but it's what the parents want. Also, take a look at the map of Europe in the history classroom. Despite the film being set in 1998, the map still shows a united Soviet Union, Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia, implying that it's at least ten years old -- and judging by the condition it's in, probably older. Several of the door frames look like they could use, at a minimum, a new coat of paint.
Elijah Wood heard about the upcoming Lord of the Rings films while filming this movie, and sought out the role of Frodo. The role of Bilbo played by his cast mate, Ian Holm, also appeared in another film about parasitic extra terrestrials, Alien (1979).
Harry Jay Knowles: (at around 12 mins) the bespectacled, red-haired teacher having his injury examined by Nurse Harper (Salma Hayek). Knowles, most famous for his movie news website "Ain't it Cool News," is a long time friend of Robert Rodriguez and a fellow resident of Austin, Texas, where this movie was filmed.
The trivia items below may give away important plot points.
(at around 12 mins) When Prof. Furlong (Jon Stewart) is talking to Nurse Harper (Salma Hayek), and she rebuffs him, he says, "Maybe I should just put a pen in my eye." Later in the movie, that's exactly what Zeke does.
It is unknown when Delilah was infected, but it's safe to assume that she was assimilated sometime immediately leaving the school, thus explaining why the police are unable to reach her at her home. This also explains her use of glasses and more dowdy clothing when returning to school, as the aliens seem to allow their hosts to unleash their desires free of normal societal constraints; in this case, Delilah secretly wants to fit into the crowd rather than lead because of her looks. Though her wearing glasses is more likely because contacts will dry out the eyes of people who wear them. As these creatures dehydrate their human hosts, she switched to glasses so her eyes wouldn't dry out. it is also possible that she was assimilated during the scene in the lab during all of the commotion with Professor Furlong, as Marybeth was seen taking her 'to safety' behind one of the benches.
When they confront Principal Drake, assuming her to be the Queen, Marybeth empties almost their entire supply of Zeke's drugs over her even after she's been stabbed with a pen full of the stuff. We're meant to assume she's panicking, but she's actually doing this so that they'll run out quicker, just as the stoners try to literally buy all of Zeke's supply after becoming infected... so that no one will realize the aliens' weakness.
Marybeth says shes allergic to Zeke's drug "scat" when he tries to hook her up to which she responds that it can kill her, forshadows the ending when its revealed that she's the alien queen and when Casey stabs her in the eye with the diuretic drug killing her.
When Miss Burke gets beheaded in the car crash, her head walks around on tentacles then she grabs it. This is a recurring art obsession, from Saint Denis to Victorian photographers. It is also in Re-Animator and The Serpent and the Rainbow.
In the narrative behind why Marybeth didn't infect Zeke when they were making out, during the scene in which she reveals herself to Stokely as the queen alien , she almost seems to try and convince her to come over willingly. Shortly after, when Zeke confronts her in the locker room, she states how it was "sweet of him to bond with her." She later goes on to say how when she met them (referring to the main cast specifically now) she noted how they were all lost and lonely, just like her, but that even "her" feelings can be hurt by them. Long story short, it is possible that she didn't infect the main group because she had taken some sort of observatory interest in them almost to the point of wanting to befriend them in some way (at least enough to convince them to convert willingly), or that she enjoys the greater manipulation. After all, it is easy for her to take over the humans by force, but messing with their emotions may take more work and therefore is more enjoyable for a creature like her.
While snooping in the teachers' lounge, Casey tells Delilah that she can be "pretty cool sometimes". Delilah asks if he's hitting on her. At the end of the film, Delilah repeats this line to Casey, whom she is now dating
On broadcast TV, at the end credits , the English teacher, Femke Jensen's character walks up to Zeke and grabs a pen filled with scat , snorts it and smiles at Zeke. That scene is not in the movie on the premium cable channels.
Zeke's home appears to be the same home featured in Multiplicity (1996). If so, the cracked drive way, is an obvious nod to the opening scene in Multiplicity. Things went wrong when the wrong driveway's concrete was broken up.