Bill Hader based his ‘Superbad’ character on a cop who arrested him

Bill Hader based his ‘Superbad’ character on a cop who arrested him

The actor revealed that he and his pals pulled a prank on a patrol car that “scared the s— out” of an officer.

Bill Hader has shared how his experience getting arrested in his younger years ended up inspiring his character in Superbad.

The actor, who played Officer Slater in the 2007 comedy, revealed during a recent episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live that he based the character on a bespectacled police officer who arrested him one night after a prank went very, very wrong. 

“That is the guy that I based my character in Superbad on,” he confirmed. “I remember when I did that movie… and I go, ‘I got messed with by a cop with glasses,’ and Seth [Rogen] was like, ‘Oh yeah, that’s, like, so lame. I can’t take a cop with glasses seriously!'”

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In Superbad, Hader and Rogen play a chaotic police duo who end up taking awkward high schooler Fogell (Christopher Mintz-Plasse), who is pretending to be a 40-year-old named McLovin, under their wing for one wild evening that involves the breaking of several laws.

Earlier in the interview, Hader explained that he and his friends got the idea for their ill-fated lark from his father.

“My dad did the classic ‘let me tell you something I did, but hey, you guys can’t do this,’ and we were like, ‘Uh-huh,'” he told host Jimmy Kimmel. “He was like, ‘We used to take two trash cans and put fishing wire between ’em and we’d put one on either side of the street and when a car goes through, the trash cans go bop on the side of the car. It was hilarious, but don’t do that.’ And we were like, ‘Okay!'”

Naturally, Hader and his pals went out and put his dad’s prank into action by grabbing two trash cans, setting up a “giant piece of rope” that went across an entire “four-lane street,” and patiently waiting for their victim to drive by. 

“It’s really late at night. We’re at a park, we’re waiting, and here comes a car. I’m like, ‘Alright, ready, go!’ And we pull it up. The car goes through… It’s a cop car,” he said, drawing gasps from the audience. “The rope is too long that the trash cans go behind the car and they bang into each other, so it looks like he just got married.”

“It scared the s— out of this cop,” Hader continued, noting that the officer repeatedly slammed on the brakes before eventually pulling over. 

SUPERBAD, Bill Hader, Seth Rogen, 2007. ©Columbia Pictures/courtesy Everett Collection

Bill Hader and Seth Rogen in ‘Superbad’

| Credit: Everett Collection

While all of his friends immediately bailed, Hader attempted to put his acting skills to good use. “Everybody ran, but I was like, ‘Aww, I’m gonna be cool,'” he said. “So I went over to my car and was just smoking a cigarette, like, ‘Hey, what happened, officer?'”

The policeman didn’t buy it for a second. “He was like, ‘F— you!'” Hader said. “He had a flashlight and then he made me pick up beer cans. I got arrested afterwards.”

He even recalled the sick burn the officer made as he was picking them up, joking, “I remember there was Natty Light cans and he was like, ‘What, are y’all on a budget?'” 

Watch Hader talk about the prank in the clip above. 

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