close menu
Episode 202: Nerdist Podcast
Airplane! (The Movie)
Nerdist PodcastNerdist Podcast

Nerdist Podcast: Airplane! (The Movie)

Jerry Zucker, Jim Abrahams, & David Zucker, aka ZAZ, wrote and directed Airplane!— one of the most influential comedies in the history of film. This was a panel at SF Sketchfest way back in January of 2011 after an incredible screening of the film at the Castro Theater for 1,000 screaming fans, who gathered to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the film’s release. In addition to ZAZ was Ted Striker himself, Robert Hays. Breathing deeply to calm the nerd spazzing…

Why DEADPOOL 2’s “Peter” is More Important Than You Think!

Why DEADPOOL 2’s “Peter” is More Important Than You Think!

The Story of Fake Wedge in STAR WARS

The Story of Fake Wedge in STAR WARS

ANNIHILATION's 'Shimmer' and Ending Explained

ANNIHILATION's 'Shimmer' and Ending Explained



  1. Nate says:

    Great overall episode, although I felt bad for the 3 guys who screwed up when asking questions. It’s probably embarrassing enough to have screwed something up in front of people who created one of your favorite movies, but it had to be doubly worse to have the host of the show tear you apart over it.

    Yes, the guy who asked about the “missing scene” (which turned out to be from Airplane 2) probably deserved to feel stupid for his women-punching comments [he was trying and failing at ironic humor], but it was a bit much to tear him apart like that. Especially since in the Tina Fey episode (the part where you’re talking about how neither of you enjoy pranks) you talk about how you don’t like making people feel bad. Those 3 guys had to feel awful! I sure would have. You said this (jokingly?) but I know that if it was me, I DEFINITELY would be stressing over that for weeks if not months.

    I get that it’s probably a stand-up comedy thing (Todd Barry made fun of me at a stand-up show just because I was in the front row, and I see comics do it in taped shows quite often) which would be appropriate in a stand-up show, but it doesn’t feel like an appropriate thing to do in a movie panel (even though it is a comedy-movie panel). You’re such a nice guy and it comes across as being mean-spirited in this context, even though it’s just the “stand-up” part of you coming out. You do it in other panels too, and it always makes me sink a little bit.

    But like I said, it was a fun episode and I don’t like you any less. I’m a huge fan of the show and Jonah, and Matt (who I like more and more every time he mentions KT Tunstall). The show gets me through my drive to work with a smile and laughs and even slow days at work, gush gush blah blah. As someone who’s hyper self aware and emotionally fragile though, I just know I would have felt crappy if I were one of those 3 guys. That’s a nightmare of mine, getting up in front of a large crowd AND in front of my idols and screwing up AND having that screw-up acknowledged and made fun of. NIGHTMARE! AGH!

    I love you all!

  2. Jennifer E says:

    Another amazing podcast.

    Chris, I just freakin’ love you so much. I hope the Zucker Bros. et al were as aware that they were in the presence of comedy greatness being with you as you were being with them.

    The Nerdist was my first podcast. Once I finished all the episodes and started exploring other podcasts, I found that what you have created is utterly unique and inimitable. Aisha Tyler and others are also awesome, don’t get me wrong, but you guys are still far and away my favorite, and I look forward to every release. Hostfuls are probably my favorites because you three together just melt my lil’ heart, just being yourselves shooting the breeze.

    I know you don’t fancy yourself any kind of guru, but listening to you three and your amazing guests and reading your book helped me break out of a crippling vicious cycle of self-doubt and -sabotage, depression, indecision and procrastination. I don’t know if it would have happened without your work. I’m eternally grateful, and inspired by the example you have set; you’ve shown that by just doing what you love and being true to yourself you can make a profound positive impact on the lives of others. It’s powerfully moving, and very galvanizing.

    Okay, enuffadat knobslobber! NEXT ISSUE!!

    Ahhh, James. The drunken keyboarding always bites us in the ass, huh? I have found that my few regrets in life are tied to alcohol. Still working up the courage to follow Chris’ example on that score and just accept that my life would be improved by making that tough call of giving up the sauce completely…in the meantime, Google has a widget that requires you to do simple math problems late at night before being able to send email. I don’t guess that would have saved you here though, eh? Fiddlesticks. Awesometastic that you manned up about it! *nerdhug*

    In closing, I think I should take the opportunity to say that I am fairly sure I have wanted to screw Robert Hays since before I knew what screwing was because of this movie. So…yeah.

    Long comment is long.

  3. setlasmon says:

    way to step up to the criticism, James! you are the first internet commenter to ever do that!

    and Bobby G is right… Top Secret is just as amazing. even more gems to find on the rewatch there IMHO.

  4. setlasmon says:

    sooooooooooo good! this was worth the wait.

    and this is coming from a man whose very marriage is being threatened by the phrase “Jim never vomits at home”.

  5. james says:

    I really need to get a life. Sorry about that. Again. My favorite podcast

  6. James says:

    I agree with everything you said. I’m sorry. I was drunk but I had felt that way after you talked about the Kardashians. I feel that those who produce are more responsible than those who do. I will listen. I feel like shit, really. This is my favourite podcast. i am sorry.

  7. Bobby G says:

    I love Airplane, its too bad Top Secret doesn’t get the same amount of love.

  8. Patty Marvel says:

    1st – “Airplaine!” and “Zero Hour!” are now in my Netflix queue, one because I haven’t seen it in ages and the other I’d never heard of before. I’ll make a point of listening to this podcast again after I watch them.

    B – Never eat dinner while listening to an especially funny podcast. Snorting hot creamed spinach = OWIE!

    3.14159… – Haters gonna hate, but your true fans are loyal and love what you do, free or not. Buck up, Big Guy!

  9. Wendy says:

    had a big goofy grin on my face for this one. Thanks Chris!

  10. Josh says:

    lol — by “@Jim” I meant “@James”. Poor Pete Holmes over at You Made it Weird (GREAT podcast, btw) has an @Jim who complains on his comment thread anytime he or one of his interviewees even insinuates that they disagree with atheism. At least @James said he was going to stop listening! @Jim listens to every episode of YMIW — and hates it every time!

    Maybe @James and @Jim are the same person??? Oh man, nerdist conspiracies!

  11. Josh says:

    Yo Chris!

    Great episode as usual! Love your response to @Jim. We, your listeners, affirm you and Nerdist Industries every week Chris Hardwick! You know you’re rocking it!

    But I do love how self-effacing and humble you guys have all remained, despite Nerdist’s meteoric rise. The fact that listeners like @Jim still bother you is so endearing. I wish I could tell you not to let them get to you, but then you wouldn’t be you, huh? (c:

    Hey @Jim! So listen to another show, dude! If you have friends who listen to the Nerdist Podcast, complain to them about the things that bother you. And if you feel you must let entertainers know why you
    are no longer entertained by them, send them e-mails. And then get into politics. Imagine how much more fun it’ll be to feel indignant about things that matter! The world needs more people with a penchant for letter campaigns.

    Btw, “meteoric rise”? Don’t meteors fall?


  12. Mick says:


    Thanks for your rendition of the Angie theme song. I spin that opening title sequence about once a week on YouTube. Great pick up from a time when networks would allow 60 seconds plus for a theme song.

  13. Jon says:

    This is one of my favorite movies of all time! Way to go, yet again Chris!

  14. Sean says:

    This is the higlhight of my weekend! Avengers will really need to work to top this!

  15. Brian S says:

    I need to save this one for work next week. I can’t wait though! ARGH!

  16. Chris Hardwick says:

    @james: You are mad about something, and I think it may have nothing to do with me but you just needed to get it out somewhere. But I could be wrong! What I DO know is that you have twisted my words to allow yourself to be mad at them. I never complimented Ryan for “exploiting an idiot”. I complimented his work ethic, which is pretty remarkable. I’m sorry that your warped view of my words is causing you such mental turmoil that you can no longer listen to the show. People like yourself who can flip a comment thread into a complaint desk about something they pay zero dollars for is genuinely fascinating to me. I sincerely hope this is not the approach you take into the rest of your life, as I fear you may not find much success with it. In any case, you are absolutely entitled to your opinion, despite its being built on a thing I didn’t actually say. Also, I am no longer on G4 or E!, nor have I been since last year, so your other point is also false. Oh well! Thank you for listening this long anyway!

  17. KT says:

    Well, that was just wonderful! Love, love, love…

    And LOL @ James Miller — what a silly thing to get worked up over. Relax, it’s not that serious. 🙂

  18. Dan says:

    The scene with Uschi Digard in Kentucky Fried Movie is still one of the hottest eva. As for Airplane! and the podcast, Chris, you did an amazing job with keeping calm and being able to give a great interview in front of so many people. I wish I watched the movie before listening cause some things I couldn’t remember off the top of my head >.< I know it only dealt with Jim Abraham, but maybe there can be a part 2 talking about "Hot Shots!"? Also one of my faves of all time. great job!

  19. james says:

    Dear Mr. Hardwick
    I listened to a few of you recent podcasts and have decided that i will listen no more. You insult Kim Kardashian (who i think is an idiot) constantly but work for the same network that she is employed by. You also compliment the producer of her show Mr. Seacrest. You seem to think he is a genius for exploiting an idiot. I am not a “hater” or a “troll” i am an educated person who has left my real name and my email address. Please, I think you are an intelligent guy who needs to reconsider his invective and place of employment. I hope you change your ways so I can listen to your podcast again.

    James Miller

  20. Three Toes of Fury says:

    WOO HOO!!! i woke up today and checked for podcast updates…when i saw a new nerdist titled “Airplane!” i figured it was a hostful that mentioned the movie…low and behold i find out its entirely about the movie with the cast/directors!?!

    Chris…seriously…your podcast continues to be unfriggingblievably good. Thank you SO much. This one is a total treat as its undeniably one of the all time greatest movies.

    Peace and Dont Call me Shirley.


  21. michelle says:

    My auditory meatus thanks you!

  22. jgarfink says:

    This was well worth the wait. I couldn’t stop giggling at work.

  23. Fantas! says:

    God, I love Airplane.