How Brad Pitt and Ben Stiller Almost Made a Rolling Stones Movie
"I'm not good at pitching stuff," the comedian admitted on the Howard Stern Show, reflecting on the time in the '90s that he had the chance to convince Rolling Stones band members that his movie suggestion was a good one.
You can see the interview below.
Stiller said a producer reached out to him after seeing The Ben Stiller Show, a sketch comedy series that aired on MTV in 1992, and proposed a movie idea that she said originated with Jagger. The film would have loosely involved Stiller and Pitt as super fans going wild, "crawling up on the lighting, the rigging, to get close to the band" and doing other ill-advised things at Rolling Stones' concerts.
Jagger has always been a "real film guy," as Stiller put it. In 1970 he starred in the films Ned Kelly and Performance, and later appeared in the 1987 film Running Out of Luck, where he ironically played another rock ‘n’ roll star named "Mick." Further credits included 1992's Freejack and George Hickenlooper’s 2001 film Man From Elysian Fields.
Jagger's idea was a concert film with comedy bits intertwined, and although he had actors on standby, there was one caveat. "The catch was we had to pitch to the Rolling Stones," Stiller explained. "Mick got us on board but then he was like, but you gotta get everyone else on board."
The big moment for the pitch came in Toronto in the early '90s as the Rolling Stones were rehearsing at a girls' gym. Stiller and collaborator Judd Apatow were invited to watch before making their case to the band. The pitch was ultimately unsuccessful, which Stiller admitted may have been for the best. "The idea probably wouldn't have worked in execution because people would have just wanted to see a Rolling Stones concert film," the comedian confessed. "You wanna see a comedy? You see a comedy. You wanna see a concert film? You see a concert film.
More recently, Stiller has been working on the nine-episode series for Apple TV+, Severance. He also has a documentary in the works about the "brilliance and humor" of his late parents, and Anne Meara and Jerry Stiller.