Sundi Rose
Updated Dec 18, 2014 @ 11:46 am

Now that there is talk of a Zoolander sequel, it might be a good time to look at how it all began—which is exactly what pop culture writer-hero Nathan Rabin did recently. In a post on The Dissolve, Rabin tracked the origins of the inventor of Blue Steel and totally surprised us with his findings. Turns out, long before Derek Zoolander hit the big screen in 2001, he was a struggling male model appearing on the 1996 VH1 Fashion Awards.

The clip Rabin found, aside from providing my weekly dose of silly, features a very young and handsome Ben Stiller playing Derek Zoolander for the first time ever in a sketch that aired during VH1’s ’90s-era awards show. As if I need another reason to adore Ben Stiller, this clip reminds me why the first Zoolander became such a cult classic. For three minutes, Derek is interviewed, reality-show style by an unseen producer. He talks of the hours and hours of practice it takes to be Derek Zoolander, and how he must spend “4-8 hours in front of a mirror. Trying a tilt of the head or a furrow,” because, according to Derek, it’s not all about the eyes, it’s the forehead.”

The three minutes of original Zoolander is charged with ’90s nostalgia. One of the most inspiring moments happens as Derek sits around the table with his male-model roommates. When they all hear a buzzing they simultaneously check their pagers (yes, PAGERS).

All this nostalgia might just find a rightful home soon with Zoolander 2 (working title Twolander). Apparently a script has already been written by, get this, Justin Theroux. Ben Stiller and Penelope Cruz have signed on, and there are serious rumors that Will Ferrell and (maybe) Owen Wilson will reprise their roles.

While we’ll have to wait for that magical second full-length Zoolander movie, this three minutes of Stiller-gold is a good holdover.

(Image via)