Post-blockbuster Summer Movie Guide

Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby

Will Ferrell in "Talledega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby"
Will Ferrell in "Talledega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby"
  1. Star Will Ferrell, who plays Ricky Bobby, also co-wrote the script. When he and co-writer/director Adam McKay pitched the movie idea, they summarized it in six words: "Will Ferrell as a NASCAR driver."
  2. The film went through several different titles. While the film was originally called "Talladega Nights," some NASCAR officials objected to the title. It then became "High, Wide, and Handsome," but that title was scraped and the much of the movie was filmed as "Untitled Will Ferrell NASCAR Movie." Several other titles were thing considered, including "Loud and Proud." Finally, the movie reverted to the "Talladega Nights" title after discussion with NASCAR.
  3. While the title of the film is "Talladega Nights," few of the movie scenes actually take place at the Talladega Superspeedway. Only one week of shooting was done there; the rest of the film was shot in North Carolina, with Lowe's Motor Speedway being used for many of the racing scenes. Also, despite the title, the Talladega Superspeedway is never used for night racing, and there are no lights at the course.
  4. "Talladega Nights" and another summer 2006 film, "Cars," share a bit of trivia. In "Talledega Nights," Ricky Bobby and Cal Naughton, Jr., are nicknamed Lightning and Thunder because they always finish first and second, respectively. In "Cars," Lightning McQueen calls Chuck Hicks "Thunder" because, like Naughton, he always comes in second.
  5. Writers Adam McKay and Will Ferrell previously worked together on "Anchorman," and the movie also features many of Ferrell's "Saturday Night Live" castmates in roles or cameo appearances.
  6. The Web site for "Talladega Nights" ( not only includes trailers and gamers, but fans can also create their own "Talladega Nights" movie poster by uploading a picture of themselves and using the Web site's tools to manipulate it.
  7. One scene in the movie includes a car being driven backwards. To create this illusion, the production company actually built a car with its exterior body on backwards. To drive it, the driver lay down on the passenger side and steered by looking out of a tiny windshield that was where the taillight usually is.
  8. Checker's Drive-In Restaurants, the official NASCAR Drive-Thru, joined with Columbia Pictures to promote the movie. Customers can enter the "Talladega Nights Fully Loaded Sweepstakes" to win a trip to a race at Talladega, a fully loaded Winnebago, and a year's supply for fully loaded fries. The restaurant is also introducing a series of Fully Loaded menu items.

Opens August 4, 2006