If ever there was a show that needed a “Don’t Try This at Home” disclaimer, it was Jackass. The MTV show became a phenomenon in the early 2000s thanks to its highly creative – if downright stupid – array of dangerous stunts and pranks. But as you’re about to find out, things actually got even more chaotic when the cameras were turned off.
20. Its origins stem from a ’90s skateboard magazine
Inspired by his idol Hunter S. Thompson, Johnny Knoxville first turned to the world of reckless stunts after his acting career stalled. He then managed to convince cult ’90s skateboard magazine Big Brother to cover his exploits. The publication’s editor Jeff Tremaine helped take things further – filming Knoxville pepper spraying himself among other stunts – and became a co-creator of Jackass.
19. An Oscar winner helped to launch the show
Jackass has a stronger affiliation with the Oscars than you’d think. Its movie spin-off Bad Grandpa picked up a “Best Makeup and Hairstyling” nomination at the 86th Academy Awards. Meanwhile, Spike Jonze – who won “Best Original Screenplay” for Her and who has been nominated for “Best Director,” “Best Picture” and “Best Original Song” – served as a co-creator and helped to get the show off the ground during the pitching stage.