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We’re dedicating an entire show to the first breakout star of Saturday Night Live, Chevy Chase. Why? I really don’t know. It seemed like a good idea at the time. We cover all three of Chase’s good movies and at least a third of his terrible ones. This episode has it all; cute dogs, little people and Princess Leia in her underwear. Daffy and I discuss why Billy Murray and Chevy Chase aren’t friends and why Chase probably won’t be appearing in any Marvel movies any time soon. Find out why Chase isn’t in Animal House and why Daffy believes the movie is over-rated anyway. We also name at least a handful of the many, many people Chase has offended over the years. It’s a podcast and a dessert topping!
The show is embedded after the jump. Hope you like it.
In the late seventies and early eighties, Chevy Chase was the height of cool. He was the original break-out star of Saturday Night Live which was the hip show to watch and not an institution like it is today. When he went into movies, Chase was hailed as the next Cary Grant. But despite appearing in a few durable comedies, Chase has failed to live up to the promise he showed early in his career. These days, he is known for his tirades more than his comedy.
What the hell happened?
For much of the 1990’s, Jonathan Taylor Thomas was a TV star. The child actor even threatened to make the jump to movies for a bit, but his big screen efforts were less successful. Eventually Thomas left Home Improvement to focus on his education. Ever since, he has remained mostly out of the Hollywood spotlight. This profile from the August 1997 issue of Movieline took place when Thomas still seemed like he might be a movie star. But even at fifteen, Thomas seemed like he was ready to enjoy some privacy.
Pretend you are a high powered Hollywood producer. The year is 1992 – a time when movie stars mattered. If you wanted to open a hit movie, you needed an A-list leading man. In order to attract top-tier talent, deals were being struck that included ever-increasing pay days for a select group of movie stars. In the July 1992 issue of Movieline magazine, they looked at who was earning six million dollars or more per picture and asked, are they worth it? Some of these guys may have been. Some, in retrospect, definitely weren’t . With the benefit of a quarter century of hindsight, let’s sort out who belongs in which group.
Michael Rosenbaum recently showed up in a cameo role in the sequel to Guardians of the Galaxy. You may not have recognized him since his face was covered in CGI effects. Rosenbaum is best known for playing Lex Luthor on the long running TV show, Smallville. While that show was still on the air, the actor made a small bid for movie roles as in the comedy Sorority Boys. The May 2002 issue of Movieline magazine included a profile of Rosenbaum and fellow handsome comedic actor, David Sheridan.
Sigourney Weaver celebrates her 67th birthday today. She made her film debut in a small role in Annie Hall, and was the breakout star of Alien two years later. In the early 1980s she starred in diverse films, including Ghostbusters (one of her biggest box office hits) and The Year of Living Dangerously. In 1986 she returned to what has become the role most associated with her, Ellen Ripley in Aliens:
In the mid-eighties, Kelly McGillis was a rising star. Early in her career, she had a couple of hits one of which turned out to be one of the most iconic movies of the entire decade. Top Gun made Tom Cruise a mega-star. But McGillis’ career went in a different direction. A few years after her star-making role, McGillis became dissatisfied with Hollywood. While McGillis has continued working steadily. she has largely avoided the spotlight.
What the hell happened?
Effects-driven comedies are hard to pull off. Few know this better than Harold Ramis. Ramis is best known for having played Egon in the original Ghostbusters which he also cowrote. But he also directed Chevy Chase in Vacation, Bill Murray in Groundhog Day and both of them in Caddyshack. Multiplicity, which starred Michael Keaton playing a regular guy who clones himself, seemed like the kind of high profile comedy that could repeat the success of some of Ramis’ earlier movies. But it just never caught on. In the August 1996 issue of Starlog, Ramis discussed his latest movie.
Movieline magazine loved its lists. You could count on some kind of list-based article just about every month. In July 1995, they polled 50 celebrities to ask which movies they were addicted to.
The Golden Raspberries started off as an informal joke. Something for a publicist and his friends to do after the Oscars had ended. Over time, it has become and enduring and irreverent tradition. In theory, The Razzies poke fun at the worst movies of the year. But like any awards ceremony, the Razzies frequently make the wrong call. We’re going back and looking at the history of the Golden Raspberry Awards one year at a time.
The thirty-sixth annual Razzies nominated the movies of 2015. Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Jurassic World were the top movies of the year. Spotlight was named Best Picture and Alejandro G. Iñárritu won his second consecutive Best Director prize for The Revenant. That movie’s star, Leonardo DiCaprio, finally won Best Actor and Brie Larson was named Best Actress. The Razzies got all hot and bothered over bondage and less-than-fantastic super hero teams.
Also, the Razzies sort of apologized to their biggest target.
Joe Dante worked his way from cartoonist, to production assistant, to editor, all the way to director in his own right. His fondness for the old-school and homages to bygone eras of filmmaking inform most of his work, of which there is quite alot. Over his career, he has shifted gears without a hitch from adult-oriented work to become a name synonymous with clever family fun. Those flowers have wilted however, as he now finds himself increasingly involved in TV direction and non-theatrical films.
What the hell happened?
This month marks a couple of important milestones for Le Blog. I started the site six years ago. The first article posted May 17, 2010. Ordinarily, I would let a six-year anniversary pass unremarked on. But on top of that, the site reached 10 million hits this morning! In celebration of that landmark, I thought I would look back at the first six years of Le Blog.