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Saturday, August 13, 2011

FUN FACTS: iLost My Mind

by Dan Schneider
Executive Producer/Creator – iCarly & Victorious

It's 7:20am in Hollywood, and I just woke up to write these Fun Facts, as I promised yesterday on my Twitter (DanWarp).

And here they are!  The Fun Facts about tonight's NEW iCarly episode, iLostMyMind.

The episode premieres tonight at 8pm (7c).  It's easily one of the most eagerly awaited iCarly episodes ever.

Now...

*** SPOILER ALERT ***
*** SPOILER ALERT ***
*** SPOILER ALERT ***

DON'T READ THIS STUFF BEFORE YOU WATCH THE EPISODE IF YOU DON'T LIKE SPOILERS!!!!  YOU'VE BEEN WARNED!!! :)

If you read on, it will reveal some information about what happens in iLostMyMind.  I'm not going to reveal too much, but still... you can wait and read these Fun Facts after you watch iLostMyMind

If you're an iCarly super-fan, you'll probably enjoy reading this stuff.  But if you're a casual fan, you might find it boring.

And remember: Feel free to DISCUSS the episode here, in the comments below.  I definitely read them!  So do the cast and the writers.  Okay, here we go...
SCENE-BY-SCENE FUN FACTS

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

*** iLostMyMind ***

If you're here, reading this, I feel pretty sure you've already seen the previous iCarly episide – iOMG – the episode where, at the end, Sam suddenly kissed Freddie.

Now, before I go on, as I've said before: I usually don't talk about "seddie" and "creddie".  But I do feel I should say this TO ALL FANS OF iCARLY: Please be nice to each other.  That's really important to me, the cast, and everyone who works on the show.

Seeing our fans fight online really breaks our hearts.  Disagreeing and debating is cool, but there's no need to be mean.  Remember, we're all on team iCarly, so please, let's all respect each others' feelings.  Deal? :)

I've learned over the years, there's no episode I will ever write and produce that every fan will love.  That's just not possible.  And even if I could write a TV show that way, it would be boring.

And please remember: iCarly, like almost all scripted TV shows, is a growing, evolving story.  I'm the executive producer – the "showrunner" – and even I don't know what will happen in future episodes (beyond the ones we've already filmed).

Where will the main characters end up?  What will the situations be?  No one knows.  Those creative directions will be discussed and decided upon by me, the other writer/producers, and even the stars of iCarly.  Yep, we listen to ideas from the actors themselves, and often incorporate them into our storylines.

Okay, you people don't want any more of my yammerin'!  You want FUN FACTS!  Well, you got 'em.  Here we go...

*** Scene 1 ***
Scene begins in Carly and Spencer's apartment, with Spencer trying very hard to put on a pair of jeans.

• This is why Jerry Trainor is so brilliant.  All the script said was something like: SPENCER IS TRYING TO PUT ON A PAIR OF JEANS THAT ARE WAY TOO SMALL FOR HIM.  You could give that same stage direction to any actor, but very few have the skill to take something so simple and make it hilarious.  Jerry's the kind of actor who take almost any idea and turn it into something brilliantly funny – which is exactly what he does here, simply trying to put on a pair of pants.  It's a great way to kick off the episode.

•  As Carly lets you know in her opening dialogue, iLostMyMind picks up 3 days after iOMG ended.  I know you fans have had to wait a long time, but in "iCarly land" it's just 72 hours later.  And Sam Puckett is missing!

• "Butt slabs" – I made up that term.  I've never heard it before.  It just popped out of my weird head.  I was happy because, last night, I showed this episode to my wife Lisa (a.k.a. Hungry Girl), and she laughed when Spencer said "butt slabs".  Mission accomplished. :)

• You'll hear Spencer use the phrase "in ways I can't understand".  This is a little wink to one of my old characters, Coach Kreeton, from All That (the first TV series I ever wrote and produced).  Coach Kreeton would always get upset and yell, "Daagghh!  Aw, you've upset me in ways I can't understand!"  Now, you'll hear Spencer say it to Carly in this scene.

• Freddie walks in holding his Pear Phone.  You guys have no idea how many times a day fans ask me where they can buy a Pear Phone.  I wish they sold them somewhere!  But they don't.  About 18 months ago, I told our genius propmaster CHRIS that I'd love it if our Pear Phones could actually be shaped like pears.  And then Chris made it happen.  I think the Pear Phones first appeared in iParty With Victorious, but I could be wrong about that.  If I am, let me know in the comments below and I'll correct it here. UPDATE: A fan named "Sarah" says the Pear-shaped phones first appeared in the Victorious episode "Ice Cream for Kesha" – can anyone confirm that?

• I think you'll love Freddie's reaction when Carly lets him know that she saw him get kissed by Sam.  Look at the shock in his eyes!  (Remember, in iOMG, we the audience saw Carly watch the Sam-Freddie kiss happen – but Freddie and Sam didn't know Carly saw it.)

• Fun piece of trivia: When we filmed iOMG, I shot the Sam-Freddie kiss two ways.  In one version, Carly wasn't there – she never saw the kiss happen.  In the other version, Carly is there and witnesses the kiss.  I filmed that ending both ways because, at that time, we hadn't yet written the next episode, and we weren't sure if we wanted Carly to have witnessed the kiss or not.  Obviously, we went with version two, where Carly sees it happen.

• There was much debate among me, the writers, and even the cast as to what Carly's reaction should be to the kiss.  Excitement?  Jealously?  Anger?  Happiness?  It was a carefully weighed decision.  I think Miranda plays this scene extremely well (as she always does!).  I particularly like how she delivers her line, "Is this a new chapter in our lives – what is goin' on?"

• A couple of years ago, when I lost my iPhone, my nephew Ben showed me how to find it by going online.  I thought it was so cool!  So, I used that technology here in this scene, with Sam's Pear Phone, as a way for Carly and Freddie to find Sam's location.  Pretty smart of Freddie to think of that (and of course Carly would know Sam's password).

• I'm sure some fans will ask me what Sam's "icky" password is.  Even Miranda, Nathan, and Jennette kept asking me.  Yes, in my brain, I do know what Sam's password is, but that's only in my brain.  You'll have to use your imaginations.  By watching this scene, at least you'll know how many characters it is. ;)

• I love the how the computer screen looks when Freddie does the search for Sam's phone.  Our visual effects guru, David, is amazing!  It bugs me when I watch TV shows and the computer stuff looks fake.  We try really hard at Schneider's Bakery to make all things tech-related look as real as possible.

• I love the way Nathan delivers his line, "I have to click the items!" – and, by the way, that line was not in the script – I added it on stage while we were filming this scene.  It's very much the kind of thing my wife Lisa would say. :)

• "Troubled Waters" – a little nod to the great Simon & Garfunkel.

• I don't know why, but the way Noah "Gibby" Munck delivers his line, "Yes!" makes me laugh every time.

• It was not scripted for the elderly lady to blast Spencer's eyes with pepper spray.  I thought of that on stage, while we were filming the scene.  Luckily, we have the best prop department in television, and they were able to find a prop pepper spray can in just a few minutes.  I'm glad, because it gave us a really funny ending to this scene.

*** NEW OPENING CREDITS!!! ***

• Yep!  Every time we begin a new season of iCarly, we have new opening credits (the visual images you see when the theme song plays).  I hope you like these new ones!  Tell me which shots you like best.  I think I'm going to make some small changes, which you'll see in the next episode after iLostMyMind.

• What do you think of the new first shot when  i C a r l y  is typed into the web browser?  Can you identify all the changes???  Do you like the new screen???

• I kind of love how Spencer's blowtorch takes us to the iCarly logo.  That's another cool visual effect by David.  Thanks, David!

• When you see starring Miranda Cosgrove and she's wearing a red shirt with a black jacket – and she's laughing – she's NOT being Carly there.  That's a shot "stolen" from between takes, when Miranda was laughing at something happening on set.

• Many of the video images you'll see in the opening credits are from future episodes.  Which shots intrigue you most???

• Like with Miranda's main shot... when you see Jennette McCurdy and she's wearing blue/multi-colored plain shirt – and she's laughing – she's NOT being Sam there.  That's a shot "stolen" from between takes, when Jennette was laughing at something that had gone wrong in a scene.

• When you see Carly and Freddie, standing side-by-side, "wiggling" as they bend at their knees... that's not a real shot from an episode.  That was just Miranda and Nathan goofing around between takes.

• YES!  The BUTTER SOCK makes it into the opening credits!  YES!

• How freakin' COOL is the shot of Nathan Kress when he rocks his shoulders, then flips up his camera?  I love that shot.  So does Nathan!  He was psyched when I showed it to him.

• Who can spot DanWarp in the opening credits?  Watch closely – it's not on screen for very long.

• Gibby's shots are awesome.  Flying with colorful wings... kissing his own severed head... wearing a tuxedo and dancing with chicken legs.  Hmmm.  iCarly's a weird little show, isn't it? ;)

• I just had to keep the shot where Spencer and the ostrich are yawning.  Every new season, I think about losing that shot... and I just can't do it.  It's too good.  And guess what: I have the actual tie Jerry wore in that shot!

• You know the shot where Carly tosses her blue cowboy hat into the air?  The "Mary Tyler Moore" shot, as we call it at Schneider's Bakery?  I've always wondered about the 2 girls on either side of Miranda in that shot – the one with black hair in the green shirt, and the one wearing the big fuzzy multi-colored hat.  Those girls were background players (sometimes called "extras") in that one scene from the pilot.  They never knew, back in early 2007, that they would end up being in EVERY SINGLE EPISODE OF iCARLY.  I wonder if they hear about it a lot in their personal lives.  Hey girls, if you're reading this, let me know!  I want to interview you two!  Call me at Nickelodeon!

• I really like the final shot of the cast eating the giant submarine sandwich.  When we asked for that prop, it was the same day we shot that footage.  But no place in Hollywood could make us a 6-foot long sub that fast – they all said they needed 24 hours, but we needed to shoot it that day.  So, again, our amazing prop department created that sandwich by "joining" smaller subs.  That's why, in the shot, you see a piece of the bread fall off under Miranda.  I love how the actors stayed in the scene, not even reacting to the falling bread.

•  By the way, when they all bite the big sandwich, that's not a shot from an episode.  We shot that specifically for the opening credits.  If you could hear the audio, you'd hear me (off screen) yelling, "Okay, and on three, everyone take a bite of the sandwich.  One... two... THREE!"  Maybe one day I'll post that online, with the real audio – might be fun for you to see.

*** Scene 2 ***
This scene begins with Carly and Freddie walking into a hospital called Troubled Waters.

• As you'll see, this episode was directed by Steve Hoefer, who also directed the pilot of iCarly, and the Victorious pilot, too.  Steve usually directs our "big" episodes, movies, and specials.  For example, he directed the recent Victorious special "Locked Up".  Steve is amazingly talented and we all love him.  His last name is pronounced like "Hayfer" – which is where I got the name for the teacher "Mrs. Hayfer" on Drake & Josh.

• If you can, try to read some of the signs on the wall at Troubled Water.  The signs say some pretty funny stuff.

• Surprise!  This is the first scene where we see our INSANELY GREAT guest star in this episode – the one – the only – JIM PARSONS, star of The Big Bang Theory.  He's won the Emmy twice for his role of "Sheldon" on The Big Bang Theory, and we were lucky enough to get him to guest star on iCarly.

Jim was not only brilliantly funny and professional to work with, but just soooooo nice!  Everyone on set loved having Jim at iCarly.  He's hysterical in this episode as a guy who's sure he's from the year 2077.  (Maybe he really is?)

It was also nice because my close friend Steve Molaro hung out with me on set all day while we filmed Jim's scenes.  Steve is an executive producer on The Big Bang Theory now – but for several years he worked with me on All That, The Amanda Show, Drake & Josh, Zoey 101, iCarly, and other projects.  Steve is one of the most gifted comedy writers working in the entertainment business.  He contributed a lot to this episode – for free!  I should probably take him out for lobster or something.  I'll do it! 

• There's no such thing as "barilium nitrate and four metric tons of ionized quadrazine" – I made that up.  Sounds good, right?!

• There's also no such thing as "neutronium cotton" – I made that up, too. :)

• When Jim Parsons says "Kick my thighs" please notice the sign on the wall next to him.  That sign will probably make you laugh.

• I bet nobody can identify the cartoon playing on the TV set.  Can you?  Hmmm?  Hmmm?

• Pretty daring of Noah "Gibby" Munck to take that big leap over the counter and it the floor, wasn't it?  Or... was it a stunt double?  Watch closely.  What do you think?

*** Scene 3 ***
Scene begins in Sam's room at Troubled Waters with Carly walking in, looking for her.

• How do you like Sam's FINGER PAINTING?  Guess what: I have that actual painting right here, in my house!  I took it home after we filmed this episode.  I'm going to have it framed, and then I'll display it on a wall in my house.  But I need Jennette to sign it at the bottom, first.  Should I have her sign it as Jennette McCurdy or Sam Puckett??? 

*** Scene 4 ***
Scene begins in the main room at Troubled Waters with the cop asking the nurse "What happened?"

• Keep your eye on the TV screen up in the corner.  Who knows what TV show that is?  Who's that adorable girl on TV?  HINT: I love her!!!

• The actress who plays "Miss Pelvin" (the nurse) did a wonderful job in this episode.  She's really talented and funny.

• I think you'll find the scenes with Gibby and Jim Parsons really cute and laugh-out-loud funny (I hope so!).  They were so great together.  The crew laughed a lot, which is usually a good sign. :)

• Yeah, I know I over-use the smiley-face emoticon.  Oh well. :)

*** Scene 5 ***
Scene begins back in Sam's room at Troubled Waters, as Carly and Sam talk and argue.

• Of course, Sam has no trouble grabbing Carly and easily over-powering her.  Carly Shay vs. Sam Puckett – not much of a fight.

• And now... for the first time since the kiss... Freddie enters and sees Sam, face-to-face.  Dun dun dunnnnn!!!

• Don't you love that Sam hasn't washed her hands since "yesterday" – ya gotta love that Sam Puckett.

• Sam makes a major confession in this scene, to Freddie.  I can't even tell you here.  It's too big to type!  Ahhhhh! 

• I don't know why, but I just absolutely love how Sam delivers her line, "Uh, actually let's never talk about it, all right?" – Jennette is such a great actor.

• I also love the moment between Freddie and Sam where Sam says "Off" (without even looking at Freddie).  Awesome moment.

• As I sit here watching this, I'm just thinking what a great scene this is between Sam and Freddie.  Funny... sweet... emotional.  Applause to Jennette and Nathan!

• Freddie's last line in this scene – "Sure" – was not in the script.  I added that on stage, while we were filming this scene.

*** Scene 6 ***
Scene begins in the main room at Troubled Waters with Carly, Gibby, and Jim Parsons all sitting at a table, talking.

• After Jim tells Gibby that, in the year 2041, the entire state of California falls into the ocean, I think you'll laugh at Gibby's next line.

• Cheers to our art department (production design) for the super-cool automatic steel doors at Troubled Waters.  It's so cool how they come down, locking the place down so no one can exit.

• I also think that you might laugh at Sam response to the cop's question, "Where's your father?"

---- COMMERCIAL BREAK ----

*** Scene 7 ***
Scene begins in Carly and Spencer's kitchen – Spencer is talking to a bunch of ladies.

• Yep, it's the first return of Spencer's "book club ladies" who were first seen in iParty With Victorious.  By the way, we're premiering the FULL, UNCUT version of iParty With Victorious very soon, and you'll see more footage from the book club ladies scene that was cut from the original 90 minute version.

• There were more funny lines about the book club ladies exchanging recipes and making fruit tarts, but they had to be cut, for time.  Bummer.  But no worries – we'll bring the book club ladies back!  Maybe Spencer should get manicures/pedicures with them one day.  Hmmm?

• At the end of this scene, even the way Jerry stands at the elevator is funny.  How does that guy make standing, waiting for an elevator funny?  Genius, that guy.
  
*** Scene 8 ***
Scene begins in the main room at Troubled Waters, with Jim Parsons and Carly sitting at a table together.

• In the original script, it was some other patient at Troubled Waters that was going to be laughing at the TV that isn't on... but then someone said, "Why don't we give that bit to Jim?"  And we did. :)

• This scene marks the second time we've seen Spencer dressed as a woman on iCarly.  Who can identify the first episode where that happened?

• Do you think our hair and makeup department did a good job making Spencer look like Sam's mom?  Tell us what you think!

• I'm curious to know – since Sam checked herself in to Troubled Waters, should she have been allowed to leave on her own, even though she's a minor (not yet 18)?  What do you think?

• How GREAT is that big man's voice – the guy who says "You let 'em do iCarly here, or I'll tell everybody your secret"?  I love that guy's voice.  Especially when he says, "You know".

*** Scene 9 ***
Scene begins in the main room at Troubled Waters, with the gang about to start the iCarly web show.

• This scene starts with Jim Parsons and Jerry Trainor talking about Jim's "neutronium pants".  This is great because Jerry and Jim are two of the funniest adult actors in the world – and you get to see them act together here, in iLostMyMind.  Pretty awesome, yeah?

• Jim is actually wearing a special "stunt shield" on his thigh (under his pants leg), so it didn't hurt too bad when Jerry kicked him hard.

• After Jim drops to the floor (after Jerry kicks his thigh), Jim says two things that were not in the script.  First he says, "I didn't even feel that" – and then he says "Don't touch it".  We added those 2 lines on stage as we filmed this scene.  Steve Molaro came up with "I didn't even feel that" and then I came up with "Don't touch it".  It was fantastic to hang out and work with my friend Steve, just like we did together over 10 years ago on The Amanda Show (and the many other shows we worked on together).  I really miss having him around on a daily basis.  But at least I get to watch his work every week on The Big Bang Theory.  Go Steve!

• WHY does that woman have a steering wheel?!?! 

• If you'll notice, Gibby enters this scene, says a couple of quick lines, then exits, and never returns.  Why?  Because Noah is under 16 years old, so we have a limit on how much time we get him (for work) each day.  We didn't have enough time shoot this whole scene with Noah, so I wrote him a quick entrance and exit.  If we could've had more time with him, I'd have put him in this whole scene.

• A new Penny-T!  Angry Towel – I thought of that, and even I don't know what it means!  Haha.

• I absolutely love the moment when Jim Parsons talks about the merging of Virginia and West Virginia.  I don't know why, but it kills me.  Jim is so great.

• Who recognizes Goopy Gilbert???  He was in a previous episode of iCarly – do you know which once?  We love the way he yells!  P.S. He's lost about 80 pounds since his last iCarly appearance! 

• This scene is about to get REALLY dramatic.  Like, majorly.  Wow.

• Note the sign on the wall by Freddie: Only Bite Food – advice we should all live by.

• It was not in the script for Jim Parsons to have Q-Tips in this scene.  When we were filming it, and going to Jim for reaction shots, I felt he should be doing something more interesting than just sitting there, listening.  So, I grabbed some Q-Tips and handed them to Jim.  Maybe he and Stacey Dillsen should get together!  The Zoey 101 fans will understand that reference :)

• And as Sam herself points out in this scene, this is Freddie's big chance to humiliate Sam, live on the web, in front of millions of people.  It's Freddie's chance to get back at Sam for all the mean things she's ever done to him.  The question is... what will he do with this opportunity, live on the web?  I can't tell you here.  Please trust me – it'll be better if you watch the episode.  I promise :)

Now let's get #iLostMyMind trending on Twitter!

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And that wraps up the Fun Facts and behind-the-scenes info for iLostMyMind.   As always, we hope you love the episode!  Please let me know what you think.  And we always like to hear what part of the show made you liked best, and/or made you laugh the most.  Please comment below.  :)

Luv and spaghetti tacos,
Dan :)

P.S. Please tell your friends who like iCarly or Victorious to follow me on Twitter: @DanWarp

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

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

iCarly: iLost My Mind - FUN FACTS COMING!!!

Yo-dee-ho!  It's 6:20am in Hollywood and I'm sitting here with my laptop, just finishing up my work on the new opening for the new season of iCarly.  (By "opening" I mean the video clips that go along with the theme song.) 

As most of you know, this Saturday night (August 13th) is the premiere of the NEW episode iLost My Mind, which is sort of a "sequel" to iOMG, the episode that ended with the shocking Sam-kisses-Freddie moment.

iLost My Mind picks up where iOMG left off.  I think it will blow your guys' minds in a very good way.  And... it guest stars two-time Emmy Award winning actor Jim Parsons, the star of The Big Bang Theory – he's hilarious in  iLost My Mind.

I will be posting Fun Facts right here in the next day or two.  Until then, feel free to post your comments, questions, etc. about  iLost My Mind (or anything about iCarly or Victorious) right here in the comments, below.

FUN FACTS about iLost My Mind coming shortly...

Thanks!!!

--Dan (a.k.a. DanWarp)