In Wild Hogs, John plays Woody. He appears to have it all, but in reality, his wife just left him and he's got big-time money problems. Tim Allen plays Doug, a dentist whose life has become way too routine. Martin Lawrence plays Bobby, a henpecked husband whose wife wears the pants in the family. And William H. Macy plays Dudley, a single computer geek who is unlucky in love.
On the weekends, these four responsible, suburban, middle-aged men escape their humdrum lives by donning biker gear, riding their motorcycles and calling themselves the "Wild Hogs." Then, one day, Woody decides the guys need a road trip to spice things up.
When these guys hit the road, little do they know it's going to hit back—hard. Along the way, they run into, among other things, real-life bikers who are not too impressed with the suburban fakes.
Their road trip adventure leads them to love, stronger bonds and a chance to rediscover their wild sides.
For nine years, America watched Tim Allen play family man Tim Taylor on Home Improvement, the role that earned him an unprecedented eight consecutive People's Choice Awards. On screen, Tim has worked his box office magic as Buzz Lightyear in the Toy Story movies and all three of the The Santa Clause films.
Off screen, Tim's now playing a new role—husband. So how has marriage to his new wife Jane changed him? "I joke around with her [that] every time I turn around, there she is," he says. Before they were married, Tim feared his house would be overrun with feminine products. Instead, Jane, an avid Pittsburgh Steelers fan, has filled his home with the team's memorabilia! "I'm not quite used to that," he says.
Although none of the Wild Hogs stars had previously worked together, Tim and John say they teased each other like brothers. "I came from a big family and I know teasing and I know antagonism. And if you want to play that game, I'll play that game," John says.
One day during filming, Tim says John set them up just so he could remind them of his early success. He asked the guys if they would go back to the time they were 21 years old and live it over again, would they? Tim and Martin's first reaction was, "No way." "Martin and I both [were] doing clubs and really struggling. And John just goes, 'I was a major motion picture star,'" Tim says. "There's very few people that can be that cheesy and get away with it."
Funnyman Martin Lawrence got his first big break on Star Search. He then rocketed to fame as an edgy, honest and totally unpredictable standup comic. On the small screen, his self-named sitcom, Martin, ran for five hit seasons. He then entertained audiences on the big screen in hits like Bad Boys and Big Momma's House.
After all his success, he is finally making his first Oprah Show appearance! "We watch you every day in the office in L.A., my mother and all us," he says. "And I go, 'Mama, I ain't been on there yet, Mama.' She said, 'You will, baby. Someday you will.'"
Martin says he was instantly attracted to the film when he heard John Travolta and Tim Allen were involved. "And then when they told me Bill Macy signed on I said, 'You know, let me go have some fun, enjoy it," he says.
When he arrived on set, Martin says he felt instant camaraderie with his co-stars. "We all wanted to work," he says. "It was hard enough to try to get us all together so we had to make it work, and we genuinely liked each other."
If there was a Wild Hogs rat pack, Martin says he would be Sammy Davis Jr. Still, Martin says he wasn't the jokester of the set—that was Tim Allen. "He's very funny, very funny," Martin says. Martin also had praise for John, whom he had not met before the project. "One of the nicest people I ever met in the business. Just a good guy," he says.
In 1999, Martin lay comatose in a hospital for three days after collapsing on his front lawn. "I was trying to lose weight for a film, and I just wore all these sweat clothes...on the hottest day of the summer," Martin says. "I just remember trying to make it home, trying to make it home and started blacking out."
Martin says he doesn't remember any voices from when he was asleep, but he thinks he remembers hearing the Lauryn Hill song "Tell Him," which his sister played for him. Although his condition was serious, Martin says, "It was some of the best sleep I ever got. I swear to you, it was so smooth. And I'm like if I had to go that way, I'll check out that way."
So how is Martin feeling today? "I'm doing wonderful. I have three beautiful daughters and I had two of my girls after the coma, so everything's working!" he says.
In his illustrious 35-year acting career, William H. Macy, who also goes by Bill, has conquered the stage, television and silver screen. He also nabbed a Golden Globe® nomination for his role as a fast-talking radio announcer in Seabiscuit.
It was Bill's heartwarming portrayal of a salesman with cerebral palsy in the TV film Door to Door that brought him two Emmys®, one for best actor, and another for screenwriting.
Success has also followed Bill home. He's been married to Desperate Housewives actress Felicity Huffman for nine years. Together, they have two young daughters, Georgia Grace and Sophia Grace.
Now, Bill is making his first Oprah Show appearance!
Although he's an award-winning actor, Bill says he was initially intimidated by his co-stars. "Well, they're big, fat movie stars and I thought I was going to get eaten for lunch, so I was scared to death for the first week," Bill says.
Bill says he also wasn't used to working on films with big, fat budgets. "The catering budget on this was bigger than most of the movies that I make," Bill says. One of Bill's scenes had his character jumping into a mountain pond naked. When the national park wouldn't let them use a pond, the crew went ahead and built their own, complete with filters and heaters. Tim says Bill couldn't believe it. "So Bill goes, 'Wait a minute. Let me get this straight. You three don't like being cold so they dig out a pond at, like, millions of dollars?'" Tim says.
"I don't think I ever want to make a serious movie again," he says. "I only want to do comedies."
For some of the cast, playing motorcycle enthusiasts didn't require much acting. Bill says he used to ride a motorcycle when he first moved to California. "I rode in college a bit, little dirt bikes. I've never ridden big Harleys," he says. At the time, he thought he was definitely born to be wild. "I got those goggles and a helmet...thinking that I looked really cool. I thought I did. I'd come up alongside cars and they were roaring [laughing]," he says. Bill actually decided to use his old bug-eyed goggle look for his character in the film!
Martin says he didn't ride much before the film. "When I did, I gave my bike away because I wasn't good," Martin says.
Martin says he got plenty of help from John, who had motorcycles before he had planes. In fact, John says when he first came to Hollywood he bought a motorcycle instead of a car because it was cheaper. "That was the first thing I ever drove," he says.
Even the strongest riders had some help. For some shots, a trailer pulled them along. "Don't tell nobody," Martin jokes. "In all fairness to the group, 90 percent of the riding was actual riding that we did," John says.
We all know Bill Macy can act, but did you know he can sing and play the ukulele? Bill puts his talents to good use with a special serenade for the guys. "John Travolta isn't sexy. Martin Lawrence isn't tough. Mr. Allen isn't funny. Only Macy's got the stuff," Bill sings.
How do John, Tim and Martin react to Bill's parody? The only way buddies can—by pummeling Bill on stage!
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