That Thing You Do! Cast to Reunite for Coronavirus Fundraiser After Death of Adam Schlesinger
Ethan Embry, Steve Zahn, Johnathon Schaech and Tom Everett Scott, who played the fictional band the Wonders in the movie, will watch along with fans on YouTube
These big-screen bandmates are reassembling for a good cause.
On Monday, the four actors who portrayed the fictional band the Wonders in the 1996 film That Thing You Do! — Ethan Embry, Steve Zahn, Johnathon Schaech and Tom Everett Scott — announced that they will host a virtual watch-along session with fans to raise money for MusiCares. Embry, 41, noted on Twitter that this is the first reunion for the band, which also goes by the “Oneders.”
Benefiting music industry professionals who are out of work during the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, all funds raised will be donated in the name of Adam Schlesinger, who died two weeks ago after contracting the respiratory virus at age 52.
Schlesinger wrote the Oscar-nominated title song for the movie, which was written and directed by Tom Hanks.
Costar Liv Tyler will also join the live commentary, which will be broadcast on YouTube as fans watch the film at the same time as the stars. Though the cast teased a “few other surprise guests,” it is unclear whether Hanks, 63, or other cast members like Charlize Theron, Rita Wilson and Giovanni Ribisi will participate in the reunion stream.
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That Thing You Do! follows the rise of the Wonders, a small-time band from Erie, Pennsylvania, who are launched to superstardom after winning a local talent contest.
Reacting to news of Schlesinger sudden death, Hanks credited his own production company to the Fountains of Wayne musician’s hit-making songwriting.
“There would be no Playtone without Adam Schlesinger, without his That Thing You Do! He was a One-der. Lost him to Covid-19. Terribly sad today,” he wrote on Twitter at the time.
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Celebrating the 20-year anniversary of the film in 2016, PEOPLE spoke to Schlesinger about writing the iconic song that launches the fictitious band to stardom. Schlesinger called the movie “amazing.”
“I thought it was a really cute, charming movie and I think it was very well done and very accurate in terms of the music stuff,” he said at the time. “Sometimes you see music movies and it’s just painful how off everything is. The attention to detail was really impressive.”
He added: “And I couldn’t believe how many times the song was in the movie. It started to get uncomfortable after a while. Like, ‘Oh my God, enough of this song!'”
Watch along with the That Thing You Do! cast members on Friday, April 17, at 7 p.m. ET on YouTube.
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