At the turn of the millennium, Jim Carrey was firmly entrenched at the very top of the Hollywood A-list, and could do no wrong in the eyes of his fans. The Ace Ventura duology, Dumb and Dumber, The Mask, Batman Forever and Liar Liar were all huge box office hits, while he also scooped back to back Best Actor Golden Globes for his dramatic performances in The Truman Show and Man on the Moon in 1999 and 2000.
Sandwiched in between his acclaimed turn in the Andy Kaufman biopic and another commercial success in How the Grinch Stole Christmas came Me, Myself & Irene, Carrey’s first collaboration with the Farrelly brothers since Dumb and Dumber seven years previously. A lot darker than the actor’s typical star vehicles, the comedy was much blacker than audiences had come to expect from the rubber-faced funnyman, and didn’t exactly light the box office on fire, only bringing in about $150 million on a $51 million budget. Which isn’t terrible, but definitely not what the studio was hoping for.
It was accompanied by seriously mixed reviews, too, which largely praised Carrey’s dedication to the dual role of Charlie Baileygates and Hank Evans but derided the scatter-gun approach to the plot. Admittedly, it’s gone on to find something of a second life as a cult favorite in the two decades since, but it’s hardly renowned as one of the leading man’s very best efforts.
Despite the premise of using mental health issues as the basis for a gut-busting studio comedy feeling more than a little out of place in 2021, Looper is reporting this week that Me, Myself & Irene has been proving hugely popular with Hulu subscribers lately. It’s one of Jim Carrey‘s very few R-rated starring roles, and it seems the foul-mouthed and bizarre road trip story has managed to capture the attention of a whole new audience thanks to streaming.