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BLAST FROM THE PAST

A Blast of A Cast
From the beginning of his association with Blast From the Past, Hugh Wilson knew the whole enterprise would hang on the casting of Adam — requiring an actor who could play a contemporary 35 year-old man possessing a child's awe, a ‘50s naivete and an unde

From the beginning of his association with Blast From the Past, Hugh Wilson knew the whole enterprise would hang on the casting of Adam - requiring an actor who could play a contemporary 35 year-old man possessing a child's awe, a '50s naivete and an underlying sizzling sexuality all at the same time. Brendan Fraser, who had just revealed his innate charms in the hit George of the Jungle, immediately impressed Wilson and Renny Harlin with his ambitious take on the character.

Explains Harlin: "Brendan is a leading man who is not afraid of being goofy or silly or nerdy, and at the same time really letting his masculinity and sensuality shine. He's a sex symbol who also happens to be great with comedy - the perfect combination for Adam."

Fraser fell in love with the script upon his first reading. "It was very funny, a gift waiting to be unwrapped," he says. "I felt that all of Hugh Wilson's talents in playwriting and filmmaking were manifested in this project. It was a comic fable about how being a gentleman can still be noble and it had a very different quality to it from any of my previous endeavors." He was also drawn to Adam who is an utter stranger in our modern times - yet an irresistible reminder of innocence lost. "Adam is the odd man out, thrust into a new and chaotic world," he explains, "and then to top it off, he falls in love."

To capture Adam's ingenuous manner and old-fashioned world-view, Fraser watched endless reruns of such '60s shows as "Dick Van Dyke," "My Three Sons" and "I Love Lucy." "I wanted to immerse myself in the flavor of that period in American history when the ideal of the nuclear family was still solid, when everyone tried to seem earnest," he says.

Adam's earnestness truly comes into play as he pursues his first love, the irascible Eve. "Our relationship would best be defined as playing ping-pong with an explosive ball," he comments. "We go back and forth and are constantly in danger of exploding. But Alicia Silverstone really was a wonderful choice for the role of Eve. She is such a strong and very real '90s woman who won't be seduced by platitudes or fawning or earnestness. And that's the premise of the comedy - that Adam gives her those things - only he's actually sincere about them and she can't quite believe that."

Silverstone saw the character of Eve as typical of many single women in America today. "Eve is an example of a woman who's angry and cynical because she's been hurt so many times. She's built up enough walls that she doesn't want to deal with men, other than to get what she wants from them," says Silverstone. "So when Adam comes along he's like her guardian angel. She's never fallen in love and he's known nothing but love his whole life. He respects her, he treats her with manners, he doesn't play games and he teaches her about being confident with who you are. Adam doesn't have to be anything but who he is to love her."

It was the percolating chemistry and love story between the polar-opposite pair that drew the actress to the script in the first place. "I'm a sappy romantic," she admits, "and this story was so charming and sweet and beautiful, I just wanted to be a part of it. You know, there's a lot of bad relationships in th

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