Twenty years ago this week, Tommy Boy hit theaters (and that deer). While it was never a critical smash, the film has amassed a cult following thanks to its star, Chris Farley. To celebrate 20 years of that son of a–, let’s look back on things you may not know about the movie.
Tommy Boy has a 3rd Rock from the Sun connection.
The movie was written by Bonnie and Terry Turner, who created Third Rock from the Sun and That ’70s Show. They also wrote Coneheads, Wayne’s World, Wayne’s World 2, and The Brady Bunch Movie.
Rob Lowe, one of the movie’s stars, is uncredited.
This is because he was contractually obligated to appear in another movie, The Stand.
Chris Farley and David Spade got into a bro fight over Rob Lowe.
In the biography The Chris Farley Show, Spade relays a story where he went out jacuzzi-ing with Lowe and Farley got jealous he wasn’t invited. Then when the two went out for a drink, also sans Farley, Farley got so mad he kept asking, “How’s Rob Lowe?” over and over again, then stepped on Spade’s hand.
“Chris was actually jealous of Rob Lowe,” Spade said. “He admitted it later. That’s probably why I’m not married now; my first experience didn’t work out.”
Farley was sober the whole time he shot the movie.
Chris Farley’s tragic addictions took him at only 33 years old. But while making this movie, he was sober, says director Peter Segal. And he drank a LOT of coffee on set.
David Spade’s hair was all David Spade.
OK, maybe not in this scene, but the rest of the movie. He wouldn’t let the film’s stylist work on his hair. That’s why it’s so unkempt.
Roger Ebert was not a fan.
In his review, he wrote, “‘Tommy Boy’ is one of those movies that plays like an explosion down at the screenplay factory. You can almost picture a bewildered office boy, his face smudged with soot, wandering through the ruins and rescuing pages at random. Too bad they didn’t mail them to the insurance company instead of filming them.”
Want to know how life went for Tommy Boy Callahan? Just watch 50 First Dates.
As Drew Barrymore’s character’s doctor, Dan Aykroyd mentions that the brain institute is funded by T.B. Callahan of Sandusky, Ohio. So clearly the company has been successful enough to fund a Hawaiian brain institute. Well done, Tommy! This crossover reference should come as no surprise — Peter Segal directed both movies.
[Photo Credit: Paramount Pictures]