Behind the Scenes of My Big Fat Greek Wedding: Fun Facts and Trivia

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Behind the Scenes of My Big Fat Greek Wedding: Fun Facts and Trivia


Released in 2002, “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” is a romantic comedy that took the world by storm. It became the highest-grossing independent film of all time and garnered critical acclaim for its heartwarming story, hilarious humor, and relatable characters. Behind this cinematic masterpiece lies a treasure trove of fun facts and trivia that many fans may not be aware of. In this article, we will explore the behind-the-scenes secrets, interesting tidbits, and frequently asked questions about the making of “My Big Fat Greek Wedding.”

HTML Heading 1: The Making of My Big Fat Greek Wedding

The creation of “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” was a labor of love for its writer and lead actress, Nia Vardalos. Originally a one-woman stage show, Vardalos developed the story into a screenplay, drawing inspiration from her own experiences growing up in a Greek family. The film, directed by Joel Zwick, was shot on a shoestring budget of just $5 million, highlighting the passion and dedication of the cast and crew.

HTML Heading 2: Casting and Characters

The casting process for “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” was a unique one. Many of the actors were already part of the original stage play, bringing their chemistry and familiarity to the big screen. However, the standout casting decision was the choice of John Corbett as the film’s romantic lead, Ian Miller. Corbett, known for his role in “Sex and the City,” was not of Greek descent, but his charisma and on-screen chemistry with Nia Vardalos made him the perfect fit for the role.

HTML Heading 2: Cultural Authenticity

One of the reasons why “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” resonated with audiences worldwide was its authentic portrayal of Greek culture. Nia Vardalos took great care to infuse the film with genuine Greek traditions, customs, and language. To ensure accuracy, Greek-American Rita Wilson and her husband Tom Hanks (who served as producers) brought their Greek family members to the set to act as cultural consultants.

HTML Heading 2: Box Office Success and Cultural Impact

Despite being considered a small film, “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” exceeded all expectations. It became a runaway hit, grossing over $368 million worldwide. Its success can be attributed to its universal themes of love, family, and the clash of cultures. The film’s popularity even led to a resurgence of interest in Greek culture, with travelers flocking to Greece to experience the richness and hospitality depicted on screen.

HTML Heading 3: Fun Facts and Trivia

– The character of Tula Portokalos, played by Nia Vardalos, was inspired by the writer/actress herself. Vardalos, just like her character, married a non-Greek man and faced similar challenges in merging their different backgrounds.

– “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” was released in only a limited number of theaters initially. Due to its overwhelming success, it gradually expanded to more screens, becoming a true word-of-mouth phenomenon.

– The famous Windex scenes became a running gag throughout the film. It originated from Nia Vardalos’ own Greek father, who believed that Windex could cure any ailment.

– The wedding dress that Tula wears in the film was bought off the rack at a discount store for a mere $100. This choice reflected the character’s practical and unassuming nature.

– Although the film is set in Chicago, much of it was actually filmed in Toronto, Canada. The Greek-inspired neighborhood and cityscape were created to resemble Chicago through clever set design and location scouting.

HTML Heading 3: Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Did the real-life wedding of Nia Vardalos and her non-Greek husband resemble the one depicted in the film?

A: While the film’s wedding was exaggerated for comedic effect, Nia Vardalos did incorporate some Greek traditions into her real-life wedding. However, she also ensured that the ceremony reflected her husband’s heritage and beliefs.

Q: Are any of the characters in the film based on real people?

A: Many of the characters in “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” were inspired by Nia Vardalos’ own family members. While they may have been exaggerated or amalgamated for the film, they were rooted in real individuals and their quirks.

Q: Was the Greek language spoken in the film accurate?

A: Yes, Nia Vardalos wanted to ensure that the Greek language was accurately portrayed. She hired a Greek language coach to work with the cast and ensure authenticity throughout the film.


“My Big Fat Greek Wedding” is not only a charming romantic comedy but also a testament to the power of storytelling and cultural representation. The film’s success can be attributed to the dedication of its cast and crew, the authenticity of its portrayal of Greek culture, and the undeniable chemistry between its lead actors. This behind-the-scenes look at the film’s making and the trivia surrounding it serves as a reminder of the impact that a small independent film can have on the world.