There were Silent Bob sightings last week at Eden Prairie Center.
Kevin Smith, director of '90s cult-classic Mallrats, didn't bust out Bob's trademark trench coat, but the 47-year-old director did lurk around that character's old stomping grounds.
"Everything looks completely different," Smith noted during a "down low" mall tour broadcast last Tuesday via Facebook Live. "A lot more wood fixtures -- they brought in a lot of wood."
In 1995, Smith shot Mallrats -- which stars youngsters Shannen Doherty, Jason Lee, and Ben Affleck -- in that very mall. The film followed Smith's debut, 1994's beloved low-budget slacker flick Clerks, and the stakes were considerably higher.
"It's nuts: 22 years ago, the center of my universe was this," Smith said of the Eden Prairie mall. "We were making a movie for a studio, we had $5 million bucks. Never made a movie with more than four people before -- Clerks only had a crew of like four people. So this movie we had like 50, 60 ... [gets distracted] where would the pet store be?"
Smith's quartet of '90s hits -- Clerks (1994), Mallrats (1995), Chasing Amy (1997), and Dogma (1999) -- represents the strongest run of his directorial career. As such, rumors of a Mallrats sequel have percolated for years.
Does Smith's covert visit to Minnesota mean a return to the mall that forever ruined chocolate-covered pretzels?
Not likely. In 2015, Smith dashed the hopes of Twin Citians when he confirmed Mallrats 2 would be shot at a Pennsylvania mall. Then he revealed the sequel would be a TV series, not a movie. Then, in February, Smith shelved the project after networks failed to bite on the pilot.
So it seems his visit the 'burbs was all about nostalgia.
"It's home, kinda, even though it doesn't look like the mall I shot in, and even though this wasn't like the mall I grew up in or anything -- it's in Minnesota," Smith concluded on Facebook Live. "Obviously this mall is wayyy important to me. And it's nice to see it's still up and thriving."
Watch the entire clip below. And check out the comments to see selfies Smith snapped with Eden Prairie shoppers.
Speaking of nostalgia, here's the original trailer for Mallrats.
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