Reality Bites

He, like, didn't get laid while the cameras were rolling, but dude! Matt Slenske did get totally baked in The Real Cancun, the world's first-ever reality movie. The latest entry in the race for reality programming, The Real Cancun -- now tanking at a theater near you -- features three local college kids among its 16-member cast. "From bedrooms to bars," writes one critic, "and back to bedrooms, we see these overprivileged, obnoxious, underachieving, and personality-free children run amuck as if their lives depended on it." But hey, man. ASU stud Matt had, like, a really cool time making the movie.

New Times: So you're a movie star now.

Matt Slenske: I wouldn't call it that, but you know. This is the first reality movie. The première was cool. It was at the Egyptian Theater in Hollywood. Instead of a red carpet, they had sand.

NT: Sand?

Slenske: Yeah. You know? Like the whole beach thing. Uh, Cancun?

NT: Oh, right. And so you had a camera up your ass for weeks.

Slenske: Twelve days. It was fun. You're like unpacking and there's some guy standing one inch away, filming it. And there were like these monitors in our rooms, so if you started to talk, one of the camera guys would come running in to film you. But if you were telling a story that was boring or if someone was talking about something cooler in another room, they'd just walk away, like right in the middle of your story.

NT: Bummer. I'll bet a lot of it was scripted.

Slenske: There was 500 hours of filming for a 90-minute movie, and the way you get your story is you cast someone like Alan, who's like, "I never drink, I'm a good kid." So it's a safe bet that we're gonna get him drunk in the movie. But there was no Hollywood type hanging around yelling, "Get the hick kid drunk, you guys!"

NT: What was with all the lesbo action in this movie?

Slenske: I don't know what that was. They have 500 hours of film and they go for the girl-on-girl action. I guess the twins kept like kissing each other so the camera guy would film them. Whatever.

NT: How many of the cast members did you sleep with?

Slenske: I didn't have sex with any of them. There's a girl I took home from a club one night, toward the end of the movie, and I was in the shower with her. And Sarah walked in on us.

NT: Sarah is the cast member who had the hots for you.

Slenske: Right. And when I was in the shower with that other girl, they sent Sarah in to find us in the shower. It was like, total drama with that.

NT: Dude! But Sarah kept talking about how she had a really hot boyfriend back home in Phoenix.

Slenske: Yeah, she keeps talking about how she has a cool boyfriend and she's not gonna fool around, but you only see 90 minutes of the film. She told me something different when they weren't filming.

NT: And she has that immortal line (in unison with Matt): "I thank fucking God I didn't hook up with Matt."

Slenske: Right. She says that in the movie, but then why is she crying? If she's so fucking glad she didn't bag me, then how come she's all weepy, you know? She could've just said, "Fuck off."

NT: What do you suppose your kids will think of your performance 20 years from now?

Slenske: They'll probably laugh. I didn't do anything too bad. I was a little bit surprised when I saw how the film was cut together, but you know. We signed up to go to Cancun and party, and we knew what they wanted from us.

NT: My favorite part was where you . . .

Slenske: (interrupting) Poured a cup of pee on Sarah's leg?

NT: How did you know?

Slenske: I hear that a lot. She got stung by a jellyfish, and you're supposed to put pee on it if you don't have the right ointment. You have to pee on someone to kill the sting.

NT: You had a really big cup full of pee. It was really orange.

Slenske: Yeah, well. They just said, you know, "She's gonna get sick if someone doesn't pee on her." I was like, "Okay. I'm the man."

NT: You certainly were. But maybe not the hottest man. The Real Cancun Web site has a poll where people can vote on the hottest guy in the movie. You only got 10 percent of the vote.

Slenske: Yeah. I saw that. But, like, Jorell only got 1 percent. I don't really care about an Internet poll. I'm not gonna be like the other guys who got all their friends to vote for them.

NT: I would!

Slenske: It's kind of a loser thing to do. I'm not gonna sit there and vote for myself over and over again. I know I'm good-looking, so I don't need to win a poll.

NT: According to the movie Web site, the wildest thing you've ever done was pull your pants down in front of your roommate's mom.

Slenske: This is another pee thing. I was at home and I got really drunk and I went and tried to pee in the corner of the living room because I thought I was in the bathroom. My roommate was like, "What are you doing?" His mom was there, but she was cool.

NT: The Web site also informs us that your favorite book is Charlotte's Web.

Slenske: Well, the guys from MTV were all like asking questions about us, and I don't really read books except the ones I have to for school, you know? So I just said that because I couldn't think of the name of a book.

NT: And how has your life changed since the movie?

Slenske: People are all, you know, like, "Hey, like, you're like that guy from like that movie." Most times I lie and say I'm not, because I don't want to sit there and like talk about like a whole movie I did. People want you to be like all cool because you were in a movie. I'm just like, "Go see the movie. I don't really have much to say."

NT: So you're not getting laid more since hitting the big screen?

Slenske: Well, you know. You do a movie and you add a couple conquests here and there.

NT: Even if your movie is a total bomb at the box office.

Slenske: I know. The first weekend it only did like $2 million. I think it's not doing so well because most adults aren't gonna go see it. Like parents aren't interested in watching a bunch of drunk kids on spring break, and like the kids who are interested can't get in to see it because it's rated R. But it's a movie that's just about having fun, you know?

NT: It's a movie that makes all 20-year-olds look like drunken sex machines, you know?

Slenske: Well, they wanted a reality movie, and that's reality. If there's alcohol, and you're in Mexico, what are you gonna do, go sit in your room and read a book? I don't think so.

NT: Except for Sky, the African-American woman, all of the girls in that film looked the same. I couldn't tell them apart.

Slenske: Well, maybe when you take a bunch of blonde women and put them in bathing suits and get them wet, they all look the same to you. I don't know. But you got to admit, there were no ugly people in the movie.

NT: No. Just pretty people acting ugly. You throw a major tantrum at the end of the film.

Slenske: After I sobered up, I thought, "God, they're gonna make such a big deal out of that in the movie." I was just trying to get Sarah to talk to me, and I ended up the big drama guy. I thought maybe I'd get some good acting jobs out of it. But all I've got so far is an e-mail from some guy who's casting for the next season of The Real World. I don't know if I want to do a reality TV show.

NT: Why not? You did a reality movie.

Slenske: Well, do people really want to tune in every week and watch us partying and fighting with each other? I don't know. I might do it. I guess it would depend on where they filmed it and what the girls looked like. I'm kind of holding out for a sequel to our movie.

NT: A sequel?

Slenske: They'd probably throw me and Sarah back in together to see what happens.

NT: Maybe you could pee on her leg again.

Slenske: Maybe. You never know. You know?

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Robrt L. Pela has been a weekly contributor to Phoenix New Times since 1991, primarily as a cultural critic. His radio essays air on National Public Radio affiliate KJZZ's Morning Edition.
Contact: Robrt L. Pela