Are there four words in cinematic history more iconic than “Play ‘Jaja Ding Dong’?” The surprising catchphrase from early quarantine Netflix hit Eurovision Song Contest: The Story Of Fire Saga already belongs on the Mount Rushmore of four-word movie quotes along with “You talking to me?,” “I see dead people,” and “Hasta la vista, baby.” Now, it’s getting its due.
At the very real Eurovision song contest this year, the very real actor Hannes Óli Ágústsson, who plays Olaf Yohansson in Eurovision Song Contest: The Story Of Fire Saga, will read Iceland’s very real results. And if we were a betting website, we would put all our money on him screaming “Play ‘Jaja Ding Dong’” at least once.
Per the Icelandic broadcaster RUV, Ágústsson will appear in character to scream scores for the delight of Fire Saga fans around the world. In the movie, Yohansson appears to stalk musicians Lars Erickssong and Sigrit Ericksdóttir (played by Will Ferrell and Rachel McAdams, respectively) and continuously and aggressively requests that they play the song “Jaja Ding Dong” instead of the track they wrote for Eurovision.
In an interview with Netflix last year, Ágústsson remarked on becoming a meme, admitting that he’s “actually gotten quite tired” of “Jaja Ding Dong.” He continued:
But that’s my life. Yes I am aware of [its popularity]. It has become a meme. The funny thing is when the movie was released, I was on holiday with my family on the outskirts of Iceland. And then I started getting messages from my friends. So yeah, after a few days, I realized, ‘This is really becoming a thing. And then when I saw the movie, I said, ‘Oh, okay. I can see how this can become a thing.’
Of course, while the “Play ‘Jaja Ding Dong’ is very good, it is but the second-best usage of the phrase “ding dong” in 2020. The first comes from Youn Yuh-jung’s Academy Award-winning performance as Soonja in Minari, who refers to her grandson’s penis as “broken ding dong.”
Eurovision 2021 will take place in Rotterdam from May 18 through May 22.