Kevin Smith: How Jay And Silent Bob Changed His World

Innovation & Tech Today|Fall 2019

Kevin Smith: How Jay And Silent Bob Changed His World
The director escaped death and used his heart attack to power the cameo-infused Jay and Silent Bob Reboot film in theaters.
John Gaudiosi

Kevin Smith is lucky to be alive. On February 25, 2018, he suffered a massive heart attack commonly referred to as the “widowmaker” because of its grim survival rate. With only a 20-percent chance of living, Smith was conscious and talking to the doctors at Adventist Health Glendale as they performed an emergency angioplasty to save his life. And yet what Smith was thinking about on that operating table was that he’d never be able to film his next project, Jay and Silent Bob Reboot.

Thankfully, this story has a happy ending. Smith not only lived to tell this story and direct Jay and Silent Bob Reboot (in theaters October 15), he also completely changed his life and got healthy.

With Jay and Silent Bob back on the big screen, Smith took some time to reminisce on just how crazy it is that these two characters have made him and Jason Mewes rich, taking on a life of their own over the last 25 years across all media forms (yes, there’s even a video game in development).

Innovation & Tech Today: What’s the secret to getting so many A-listers to appear in your Jay and Silent Bob movies?

Kevin Smith: It’s easy. You have to nearly die like I did. If I didn’t have a heart attack, we wouldn’t have gotten two-thirds of the cast we got. But as it stood, I could call up people and most people were like, “Oh it’s Kev. Okay, especially cause he’s sick.” And some people were like, “Oh man, I can’t make it down to New Orleans to shoot for one hour. I’m sorry.” And then I’d be like, “You do remember I almost died, right?” So I’d guilt people into showing up.

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Fall 2019