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Tropic Thunder (2008)

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Through a series of freak occurrences, a group of actors shooting a big-budget war movie are forced to become the soldiers they are portraying.

Director:

Ben Stiller

Writers:

Justin Theroux (screenplay), Ben Stiller (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Popularity
1,070 ( 60)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 10 wins & 44 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jeff Kahn ... Snooty Waiter - Fatties Trailer
Robert Downey Jr. ... Kirk Lazarus - Hot LZ
Anthony Ruivivar ... Platoon Sergeant Shot in Head - Hot LZ
Jack Black ... Jeff Portnoy - Hot LZ
Jay Baruchel ... Kevin Sandusky - Hot LZ
Brandon T. Jackson ... Alpa Chino - Hot LZ
Ben Stiller ... Tugg Speedman - Hot LZ
Eric Winzenried ... Chopper Pilot - Hot LZ
Steve Coogan ... Damien Cockburn - Vietnam Crew
Valerie Azlynn ... Damien's Assistant - Vietnam Crew
Matt Levin ... Cameraperson - Vietnam Crew
David Pressman ... First Assistant Director - Vietnam Crew
Amy Stiller ... Script Supervisor - Vietnam Crew
Danny McBride ... Cody - Vietnam Crew
Dempsey Silva Dempsey Silva ... Special Effects Assistant - Vietnam Crew
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Storyline

Action movie star Tugg Speedman is on the downslide of his professional career. He wants to be considered a serious actor, but his latest serious role as the title character in "Simple Jack" resulted in negative reviews and ridicule. Comedian Jeff Portnoy is best known for his leading roles in sophomoric comedies, and may be less well known for his rampant drug use. Five time Oscar winner Kirk Lazarus is a serious method actor, who immerses himself in whatever the role. On location in southeast Vietnam, they are the stars of "Tropic Thunder", based on Vietnam war veteran 'Four Leaf' Tayback's memoirs of his rescue during the war, that rescue which was considered a near suicide mission for the assigned army force and resulted in him losing both hands. For his role, Caucasian Australian Lazarus even went through a controversial surgical skin dying procedure so that he could convincingly play a black man. Production is not going well since rookie director Damien Cockburn is unable to ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The movie they think they're making... isn't a movie anymore. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive language including sexual references, violent content and drug material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | UK | Germany

Language:

English | Mandarin

Release Date:

13 August 2008 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Tropic Thunder See more »

Filming Locations:

Santa Clarita, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$92,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$25,812,796, 17 August 2008, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$110,515,313

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$188,072,649
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

SDDS | Dolby Digital | DTS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The water buffalo that Jeff Portnoy (Jack Black) rides turned out to be pregnant. The cast and crew found out it had been pregnant when they came to the set one morning and found her nursing a newborn calf. See more »

Goofs

After the director and actors land in the jungle the director says he will shoot with his video camera. As he is talking and turning around the position of his hand holding the camera changes. First he holds it from underneath then as he turns and the films camera changes angles he is holding it from the top of his camera. See more »

Quotes

Jeff Portnoy: [after Jeff catches the bat that stole his heroin] Hahaha! Now you're dead! You OD'ed!
[he takes a bite out of the bat]
Jeff Portnoy: Aaaagghh! Fucking hell!
Alpa Chino: What the hell? Jeff, that was a BAT, man!
Jeff Portnoy: I don't have any more... jellybeans.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Movie begins with advertisement and fake trailers where the "actors" appear. See more »

Alternate Versions

There is a director's extended cut which is available on the 3-disc special edition in the UK which contains more footage - runtime of overall film is 116 minutes on back of DVD case. See more »

Connections

Featured in WatchMojo: Top 10 Misleading Movie Opening Scenes (2019) See more »

Soundtracks

Sometimes When We Touch
(1977)
Written by Dan Hill & Barry Mann
Performed by Dan Hill
Courtesy of McCauley Music Ltd. Masters
Administered by Bug
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Ben Stiller's Best Movie!
23 August 2017 | by benabooSee all my reviews

This is hands down Ben Stiller's best movie. It has great action, great dialogue, great acting, great music and great humor. This movie is filled with quotable lines and works very well. The performances I have to single out for praise are Ben Stiller, Robert Downey Jr, Jay Baruchel, Matthew McConaughey, and Tom Cruise. I feel like this movie approaches it's themes in a way similar to Blazing Saddles but Blazing Saddles has a lot more slapstick. The Tugg Speedman character is not as memorable as Derek Zoolander but this movie is far better than Zoolander is. This is my favorite Ben Stiller movie alongside Meet The Fockers, Zoolander, Starsky and Hutch, and Night At The Museum 1 and 3 but I still haven't seen There's Something About Mary. I honestly prefer Robert Downey Jr as Kirk Lazuras over him as Iron Man but they are both fantastic performances. Tom Cruise is awesome as Less Grossman. He owns his character that is very different from everything else he has done. I hope Ben Stiller is proud of this movie because to me this is his best one.


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