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GHOSTS OF GIRLFRIENDS PAST

The Wedding Party
In contrast to Connor and Jenny, Paul and his fiancée Sandra are the picture-perfect couple, "a match made in heaven,” says Breckin Meyer, who stars as the groom-to-be. "Paul is made for monogamy. He believes in love. He really wants to be with Sandra for the rest of his life. As it turns out, the only family he has on his guest list is Connor, and that's the one person who really shouldn't be at a wedding.”

"Paul provides an interesting contrast to Connor. Initially, he's the heart to Connor's lothario. At first glance they appear to have nothing in common but their similarities and their connection as brothers emerge as the story develops,” suggests screenwriter Jon Lucas, whose credits with writing partner Scott Moore include the holiday hit "Four Christmases” and the upcoming comedy "The Hangover.”

"It's a hint of Connor's humanity and potential when you see how much he loves his brother,” adds Moore. "If he's capable of committing to that wholeheartedly and if someone as decent as Paul supports him, well, maybe he's not such a lost cause.” But it's not easy. Paul steadfastly defends his brother's behavior for as long as he can and then reaches a point where he can't justify it a minute longer. As Meyer inventories the damage, "Connor can't stop sniping about marriage, he destroys the cake, he flirts with Paul's future mother-in-law, and he even lets certain information slip out that could very well call off the wedding.”

If Paul's damage control skills are strained to the breaking point with Connor, his general keeping-the-peace skills are equally challenged by trying to prevent Sandra from having a meltdown before she walks down the aisle.

"Mean Girls” alum Lacey Chabert, who stars as Sandra, claims "She's not teetering on the brink of Bridezilla for the sake of being difficult. She's really a nice girl, just emotional and under pressure. She's been planning this wedding since she was four years old and wants everything to be perfect. For Paul's sake, she's glad his only brother can be there, but from the instant Connor arrives she knows he's going to be trouble.”

In Sandra's corner is Sarge—Sergeant Major Volkom, U.S. Marine Corps, Retired, that is, portrayed by Robert Forster. Not only is he the father of the bride, he is also officiating as minister at 15:30 hours. Not a man to mess with. Meyer quips, "A father-in-aw you have to respect is one thing; a father-in-law you have to salute is terrifying.”

"The Sarge is incredibly soft and sweet with his little Sandra, but you know he's prepared to break Connor's neck if he goes too far,” Waters attests. "All it takes is a look from Forster and you know what he's thinking… and it's not good.”

The actor, best known for his dramatic work, relished the opportunity to create some fun with Sarge, whom he describes as "a hard case ex-military who is now an ordained minister. He has a huge stake in this wedding. When Connor comes in and raises a ruckus he goes into battle mode because once you're a soldier you're always a soldier and when you're a dad you'll do anything to keep your daughter from harm.”

Starring as Sarge's former better half, Vonda, is Anne Archer. Dressed to impress and fully liberated, Vonda has a provocatively frank exchange at the bar with Connor in which she reveals a certain empathy for his views on "antiquated” social customs like marriage—with one vital exception. Unlike Connor, she acknowledges the value of love. Says Archer, "She's definitely a femme fatale, the kind of woman who feels sexy at any age, which is something you still don't see very often in films and is really refreshing. Nothing stuffy or old-fashioned about this mother-of-the-bride. She's intelligent and has a wicked sense of humor. She's wise about life and isn't there to censor anyone else.”

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