How Jack Black Finessed A Led Zeppelin Song For 'School Of Rock'
Led Zeppelin is arguably the greatest rock band in history. With "Stairway to Heaven" and … honestly, we can kinda stop there, that qualifies them.
Jack Black is arguably the wildest actor of the 2000s. He got his start as an idiot who gets his hand shot off by Bruce Willis in The Jackal and then became a huge Panda. His arc is one we all aspire to.
Gotta hand it to him.
Now, Led Zeppelin is legendarily famous for almost never letting people use their songs in films. Unlike other bands who could use the million or so a studio would pay them, Led Zeppelin is pretty much okay. They don't super need the money and so are much pickier when letting people use their songs.
Note: Sometimes, their picks suck.
When School of Rock was being made, a movie about teaching kids the history and present nature of rock and roll, Led Zeppelin couldn't be avoided. Jack Black's character, Dewey Finn, references them countless times, worships them, and uses them as examples when teaching. The idea that he wouldn't sing a Zeppelin song at some point was insane.
But … they couldn't afford it. So Richard Linklater, the director, talked with Jack Black, and they came up with an idea to get Zeppelin to do it by assembling a huge group of people, and filming from the stage's POV, as the audience and Jack Black begged and worshipped them and told them how much they adored them.
Sometimes that’s all you need.
And hey, it worked. Zeppelin came back out and let School of Rock use "Immigrant Song" in one of the least plot-heavy but most important scenes of the film. All because the guy who sings about cock pushups whined at them creatively enough.
Which, we assume, is also how a lot of rock star relationships are made.
Top Image: Paramount Pictures