Topher Grace talks about ‘Take Me Home Tonight’

Topher Grace had a blast making Take Me Home Tonight, but how could he not?

The movie, out Friday, is about one crazy, amazing night. He gets the girl and to be the hero.

It’s also the first project from Sargent Hall, his production company with best friend, Miamian Gordon Kaywin. The two met sophomore year at Brewster Academy in New Hampshire (the company is named after their dorm).

In the romcom, the former That ’70s Show star, 32, plays Matt, an aimless video store clerk about 10 years after graduation who is still in love with the popular girl in high school ( Teresa Palmer). He attends the bash of a mutual friend with an out-of-control buddy ( Balls of Fury’s Dan Fogler) and lies about his career to impress her. A lot of hijinks ensue, ala Dazed and Confused movies and their ilk.

That was the pals’ intention.

“We were kind of influenced by great, generational movies like John Hughes’ Sixteen Candles and Breakfast Club or American Graffiti. When there was that magic moment that happened,’’ said Grace at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel. “They’re not really comedies or dramas. They have everything.’’

Take Me Home Tonight is set in 1988, and there are winks to that bygone, big-haired time. Watch for a hysterical cameo by heavy-metal video vixen Angie Everhart.

But the film is not a spoof – the era is celebrated with highlights like still fashionable yuppie clothes and a great soundtrack.

“We didn’t want the guy with the huge cellphone saying, ‘How tiny is this phone?’ Or ‘We’ll have hover cars by 1995!’’’ joked Grace, who is from Connecticut. “We mostly used the conventions of stealing cars or crushing on a girl or going to a rager.’’

The ’80s drug of choice, cocaine, also plays a supporting role. Not to the extent it did in, say, Less Than Zero, but Fogler hits the lines pretty hard, a few hours after he steals a car.

Did Grace and Kaywin get into this sort of trouble?

“We kind of know that feeling, when you’re in your 20s, and it’s a Saturday night, and you go out, and you think something could happen,’’ said Grace, who claims to be the more shy of the two. “Most of the time it’s nothing, but there’s the possibility.’’

Kaywin, 31, admitted he has had his share of good times.

“My parents thought it would be an interesting idea to get a beach condo on 51st and Collins when I was in high school, which I thought was a fantastic idea,’’ he said. “I ended up using it all the time. This was the heyday of Miami’s crazy megaclubs like Liquid. We would meet up on the beach and stay up all night.’’

The experience prepared him for the real world.

“If you partied there, then nothing is really going to touch it,’’ said Kaywin, who attended Pinecrest and Gulliver academies and still visits his folks in Coral Gables often. “It’s up there; Miami can hold its own.’’

Madeleine Marr


Thanks for checking out our new site! We’ve changed a ton of stuff, and we’d love to know what you think.
Email feedback