Funny People features many cameos from a whole host of famous faces, leading viewers to believe that rap legend Eminem appears in the 2009 movie.
While 2009’s Funny People has a starry cast, few viewers expected to see rap legend Eminem appear in the Adam Sandler vehicle. Adam Sandler is best known as the star of countless comedy blockbusters. However, the actor also has a mixed track record when it comes to dramatic offerings. In 2020, Sandler wowed critics in the tense crime drama Uncut Gems, giving a dazzling performance that proved he has major potential as a dramatic performer. Before that, 2003’s idiosyncratic dramedy Punch Drunk Love offered earlier evidence of Sandler’s dramatic acting prowess.
However, not all of Sandler’s forays into drama have been so successful. 2007’s Reign Over Me was critically dismissed, while 2014’s comedy-drama The Cobbler was similarly disliked. However, the movie that Sandler turned down Tarantino for, Funny People, is a more complicated case. A Judd Apatow comedy-drama that sees Sandler play a cancer-stricken comedian, Funny People was a strange mixture of melodrama and broad comedy. Reviewers were unsure how to feel about this effort at the time of its release, but the underrated Funny People has since been viewed as a flawed but interesting and ambitious effort for Sandler and Apatow alike.
Eminem Plays A Version Of Himself In Funny People
Since Sandler’s character is a superstar comedian, he encounters quite a few famous faces throughout Funny People. However, most of the cameos in Funny People are not from actors playing themselves. Aziz Ansari, Bo Burnham, and Aubrey Plaza all play comedic actors in Funny People, but not themselves. In contrast, rap legend Eminem plays himself in a brief cameo. Or rather, much like celebrity guest stars appearing in The Simpsons, Eminem plays a comically heightened caricature of himself. In Funny People, Eminem is a standoffish and paranoid self-parody who grows furious when Everybody Loves Raymond star Ray Romano makes eye contact with him.
This is not the only time that Eminem poked fun at his fame, however. The actor also appeared as himself in 2014’s The Interview, wherein he blithely revealed during an interview that he is gay and assumed the public knew this. Eminem also parodied his success in the music video for Slaughterhouse’s “My Life,” wherein the absurd extent of his personal wealth was illustrated by a television announcer. However, Funny People might be Eminem’s best comedic cameo. The rapper’s trademark aggression is rendered comical when he begins berating a bemused Romano, with the encounter ending in embarrassment for everyone involved.
Eminem Isn’t Funny People’s Only Rap Cameo
While Eminem plays a minor role in Funny People, he is not the only rap legend in the movie’s cast list. Wu-Tang Clan mastermind RZA plays Chuck, a more substantial role that flexes the rapper’s considerable acting chops. In the years since Funny People was released, RZA has gone on to appear in numerous movie and TV roles. Rock legend James Taylor also has a cameo in Funny People, as do comedians Sarah Silverman, Paul Reiser, and Norm McDonald. However, Funny People is still mostly remembered as an early dramatic effort from its star Adam Sandler.