by Hans ten Cate
Tuesday, 5 August 2003

Rutles 2: Can't Buy Me Lunch will premiere at the Don't Knock the Rock Festival on August 16, 7:30 PM and 11:45 PM at the ArcLight Cinemas

After sitting on a shelf at Warner Brothers for over a year, Rutles 2: Can't Buy Me Lunch, the much anticipated sequel to Eric Idle's 1978 mockumentary, will receive its world premiere in Los Angeles on August 16. The screening is part of the first annual Don't Knock the Rock Festival, which is being held August 15-17 in various venues throughout Hollywood.

The festival's organizers have arranged two showings, the first at 7:30 PM and again at 11:45 PM that same night. Both screenings will take place at the ArcLight Cinema on Sunset Blvd.

The first Don't Knock the Rock Festival launches what will be an annual film and music event celebrating the rock and roll roots of Hollywood. The three-day festival is a historical journey of classic and new rock and roll films.

Saturday night will be the world premiere of Rutles 2: Can't Buy Me Lunch, which actually wrapped production last year. Written and directed by Eric Idle, Rutles 2 is the sequel to All You Need is Cash and, like the original, it is a parody of the myriad documentaries made about the Beatles.

For Rutles 2, Eric dug up some outtakes and old footage from the original documentary. “Yes, there's found footage,” confessed Eric. “I went to New Jersey and found the original outtakes – the negatives – which are fabulous. Mechanically, you could just process them, and the positive was all fresh and great.” [1] In addition, the film uses the Rutles' second album, Archeology (1996), to look back on the Rutles' influence on contemporary artists.

“It’s a documentary with my same narrator character,” said Eric, “only it’s 30 years later, and he goes around talking to Salman Rushdie, Tom Hanks, James Taylor, David Bowie and Bonnie Raitt about how the world has been influenced, and how their lives have been changed by the Rutles.” [2]

The same narrator (Eric Idle), nearly 25 years later, outside the same famed hotel in which the same Rutles actually stayed Tom Hanks tells how the Rutles released the world's first and only triangular LP record

“He pursues Jennifer Lopez and Madonna trying to get interviews, which is really funny, and Gary Shandling is just brilliant. I made it under the aegis of Lorne Michaels again, and we sold it to Warners.” [2] For reasons unbeknownst to even Eric, Warner Brothers sat on the project and the film has, until recently, only seen limited test screenings. August 16 will be the official world premiere.

Rutles 2 will feature some "found footage" and outtakes from the original documentary Hans Hänkie (Robin Williams) discusses the impact the Rutles had on Germany

The cast includes Eric Idle, Neil Innes, Ricky Fataar and John Halsey as The Rutles, along with Rutles fans and foes David Bowie, Billy Connolly, Carrie Fisher, Tom Hanks, Jewel, Steve Martin, Mike Nichols, Conan O'Brien, Salman Rushdie, Garry Shandling, Robin Williams, and cameos from the first installment by Mick Jagger, George Harrison, and Ron Wood.

Tickets to the event are available on the ArcLight Cinema's website,


  • [1] Ken Plume, "An Interview with Eric Idle," publised on IGN, 9 April 2003
  • [2] Jack Rabid, "Idle Chatter," published on Joe Nardone's Gallery of Sound (, February 2003