Then there's the dance sequence, a four-and-a-half-minute choreographed wonder that starts in a McDonald's parking lot before erupting in the middle of the restaurant, dance fever spreading through every casual Quarter Pounder-eater like it's Contagion 2: Electric Boogaloo.
MAC, dressed in a bear costume, breaks on the ordering counter as cashiers provide back-up. Football players, 9-year-olds, and Ronald McDonald dance their hearts out. And in heartbreaking juxtaposition, Eric, confined to his wheelchair, weaves through the crowd. Why is this scene in the movie?
Well, why not? "When I make a movie, I don't want to just make a movie," says Louis. "I want to make the movie revenues, the video revenues, I want to do a book, I want to do a soundtrack. That's why that was in there."
Music supervisor Brooks Arthur, who worked on The Karate Kid with Louis, commissioned original tracks from R&B singer Bobby Caldwell and popular songwriting duo Ashford & Simpson to soundtrack the big moments (while Alan Silvestri of Back to the Future fame provided the score).
Raffill and Louis were careful about product placement. You won't find gratuitous product shots in MAC and Me. Louis claims he wanted a scene set in a McDonald's only because, for kids of that age in that era, going to McDonald's was the ultimate treat. Raffill pushed to make it a musical moment to "imbue it with something richer." This was escapism, with Ronald McDonald as a Michael Jackson stand-in. "The key is I want to make a feel-good movie," Louis says, "you walk out and you're feeling good and you had fun."
MAC and Me's problem was getting people to walk in.