The Big Lebowski: Did You Know?

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Movies on the Block returns Thursday, June 21 with The Big Lebowski. Did you know these 15 things about the film?

1. One of the biggest inspirations for The Dude was a real … dude. The Coen Brothers based The Dude character on a man named Jeff Dowd, who helped distribute their first film, Blood Simple, in 1984. Like the character in the movie, Dowd was a member of the anti-war group the Seattle Seven and actually called himself “The Dude.”


2. Julianne Moore’s character was based on real-life performance artist Carolee Schneemann.


3. John Goodman, Steve Buscemi, and John Turturro’s characters were written specifically for them.


4. Jeff Bridges, who plays The Dude, is in a band called The Abiders, named after the line in the movie, “The dude abides.”


5. Since the central characters in the movie are bowling buddies, a professional bowler, Barry Asher, taught the actors how to bowl.


6. Jeff Bridges wore mostly his own clothes for the film.


7. The Dude is never actually seen bowling.


8. The Dude is in every scene of the film.


9. The word “dude” is used 161 times.


10. The F-word is used 292 times.


11. The Dude drinks nine White Russians during the film.


12. There’s a Big Lebowski themed store in NYC. The store sells merchandise related to the film, including memorabilia and t-shirts.


13. Before filming a scene, Jeff Bridges would frequently ask the Coen Brothers, “Did The Dude burn one on the way over?” If they said he had, he would rub his knuckles in his eyes before doing a take to make his eyes appear bloodshot.


14. In early drafts of the script, The Dude is said to be heir to the inventor of the Rubik’s cube, but the detail was dropped.


15. The film wasn’t considered a success at the box office, but became a cult classic over time.


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