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Mike and Dave at the premiere of their movie | © 20th Century Fox
Mike and Dave at the premiere of their movie | © 20th Century Fox

The Real Mike And Dave Tell Us How Their Story Was Turned Into A Movie

Picture of Cassam Looch
Film Editor
Updated: 10 January 2017
Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates is a new comedy starring Anna Kendrick, Aubrey Plaza, Adam Devine and Zac Efron. The inspirations for this unlikely true story, the real-life Mike and Dave, tell us what it’s like seeing a Hollywood heartthrob play you in a movie, and how the pair actually set about getting dates to a wedding by putting an advert on Craigslist.

The Stangle Brothers have seen their joke post — searching for dates to accompany them to their sister’s wedding — go viral. From internet stardom, they turned their experiences into a book which itself has been picked up and made into a blockbuster comedy starring some of the hottest names in Hollywood.

We spoke to Mike and Dave and asked them about how things developed from the original Craigslist post.

First off, Zac Efron: was there any debate about who he should play in the film? Your original Craigslist ad says ‘we refuse to let Ashton Kutcher play either of our characters, however, we will consider him for a supporting role’ — so why was there any difference with him?

Dave: Hold on hold on, why should we tell you, justify ourselves with someone who’s doing this at 4pm while I’m walking around naked in my apartment.

Mike: Haha, no but the Ashton Kutcher bit was just added as a joke; he seemed kind of everywhere at the time, he was doing — what was he doing? — oh yeah it was in the middle of the whole Two and a Half Men thing, when he basically took over from Charlie Sheen. We were a bit sick of him, so we decided to add that in. With Zac, there was no debate.

Dave: Zac turned us on, turned me on.

Mike: Yeah, Dave was just at a moment in his life when he really needed it, you know, for himself (laughter)


Adam Devine and Zac Efron as Mike and Dave | © 20th Century Fox

The High School Musical star plays Dave, with Pitch Perfect’s Adam Devine taking on the role of Mike. The Brothers themselves look, and sound, very similar to each other.

With the obvious issue of Mr. Efron out of the way, Mike and Dave seemed to have enjoyed the whole experience immensely. And who wouldn’t? It’s not every day that your life is turned into film, and the Stangles even managed to find themselves a role in the movie too.

“The production team was great, you know, they didn’t have to include us, but they kept coming back to consult us for advice, etcetera. It wasn’t just the cameo, we were around helping since the beginning.”

One imagines that the rest of the family might not have been so keen on seeing their lives on the big screen, but Mike and Dave told us that they couldn’t have been happier.

“Our parents were very much into it, our dad loved it — we thought it was very funny. [It] captured very well our kind of humor, it’s what we’d totally go see even if it wasn’t something we were involved in.”

Mike and Dave | © 20th Century Fox

Mike and Dave | © 20th Century Fox

The film changes the location of the wedding from Saratoga to the scenic backdrop of Hawaii. It was a fun shoot that the brothers clearly enjoyed being a part off.

With other notable changes made to their cinematic characters, what aspects did the movie remained true to Mike and Dave?

Obviously, they were a lot wilder in the movie, more over-the-top.

“What we think they got perfect, though, was the humor between themselves, between the two characters. They really got that right, the dynamics, it was really the same stuff we do.”

There is, however, a hint at greater maturity. Both Mike and Dave say they are getting too old to party like they used to.

Finally, the original Craigslist advert suggested that the girls who responded to the advert and were picked to go to the wedding would get royalties from future projects. Sadly this isn’t the case and the brothers are no longer in contact with their dates.

Not the Hollywood ending the film teases, but at least the real-life Mike and Dave are living the life of superstars at the moment.

Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates is out now