Thursday, 9 April 2009

Bring Back Chevy Chase

I'm not even kidding.

I may be in the minority in campaigning for a career resurgence for Cornelius Chase but I think people have become so focused on his post-80's status as a bad punchline that they forgot that this guy was actually pretty good once. I'm perfectly willing to admit that some of his later career choices were...unwise, and the phrase 'box office poison' does spring to mind but this guy was the star of Caddyshack and Christmas Vacation and that's two more classic comedy movies then you've been in. Probably.

Seriously, if you read over Chevy's C.V. and then got distracted at around about 1989 you'd think this guy was comedy gold (if you imagined Caddyshack II never happened, just like everyone else). But then it all went wrong. Catastrophically wrong in a way that makes it look like Eddie Murphy's career is going through a slight blip. The 90's had its fair share of disasters and the new millennium had Chevy pop in up in a few awful family movies but his career had basically been reduced to the status of television guest star.

But its time he got a break. He did once come close to a comeback when he was offered the lead in American Beauty; a role he turned down due to his commitment to family friendly films. That was the sort of facepalm inducing decision that half makes you want to weep for the man and half makes you want to let him commit career suicide and be done with it. But that was ten years ago and since Goose On The Loose didn't prove to be the huge success Chevy wanted, I imagine he wouldn't be quite so fussy if you offered him a third chance.

If it was well produced, I would be happy to watch a movie with Chase about getting old, sort of in an About Schmidt vein. He's in his 60s, so he's fairly limited to this type of film but he's got one of the best deadpan deliveries around and while he's got nothing on Jack, he has the charisma to carry a black comedy. Why else do you think they wanted him for American Beauty?

Of course, Hollywood isn't very likely to give Chase a lead role, especially when his star-power is virtually non-existent these days but comebacks are all the rage right now and if he can't get a lead role there should at least be an opportunity for him to snag a cameo in a film with the new kings of comedy and give his career a kick start. Playing Will Ferrell's dad would be perfect casting.


It makes perfect sense in the economic climate too, as Chase will probably work for less than the $7 million a movie he once reportedly earned. A lot less. And if the rumours are true and a new Ghostbusters film is going ahead that means Dan Aykroyd is getting another crack at the big time. And if Dan Aykroyd can do it...


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33 comments:

  1. Would love to see Chevy back for one last outing. I can't even remember the last film I seen him in... possibly Vegas Vacation. Surely he must have retired??



    www.flickeringmyth.com

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  2. Chevy Chase is currently starring in the Swedish comedy show "Hjälp". Do a youtube search for Chevy Chase Hjalp and take a look.

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  3. I think that you've got a great point. A black comedy could be a great proving ground. If he smashed it, he'd be back, bigger than ever. If he faltered, then we could all feel better about the snarky punchline status.

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  4. Decent movies Chevy Chase was in:

    1.) Foul Play
    2.) Caddyshack
    3.) Seems Like Old Times
    4.) Under the Rainbow
    5.) Vacation/Christmas Vacation
    6.) Funny Farm

    None but Caddyshack and the Vacation movies were good *because* Chevy Chase was in them. He really wasn't that funny. He bailed on SNL to make a buck and it ultimately failed. He got what he deserves so there's no reason to give him a second chance.

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  5. I might be the only one, but I liked Modern Problems.

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  6. I think "Fletch" deserves a look-in on that list of good films. As luck would have it, I've got it on the toob at the moment on cable.

    Chevy Chase's role in an episode of "Law & Order" as an actor busted for drunk driving who has a Mel-Gibson-like anti-Semitic outburst was really good. It showed he can do drama, with no hint of comedy; the character he portrayed was completely despicable.

    Yes, definitely, I'd love to see Chevy given a decent role in something. I'm sorry he's been in some poor films, but he's got acting talents that I don't think we've had a chance to see.

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  7. "Fletch" should be at the tippy top of any Chevy Chase Success list! "Fletch" = MAGNIFICO!!

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  8. I may be the only one, but i liked The Three Amigos

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  9. Yes! Three Amigos and Fletch (and even Fletch Lives) are two of my favorite Chevy Chase comedies. Caddyshack and the Vacation flicks are very close runner-ups.

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  10. Some of the best comedies from the late 70s and early 80's starred Chevy Chase. He's undeniably one of the greats. My own list would include:
    1. Vacation/Christmas Vacation
    2. Fletch
    3. Foul Play
    4. Seems Like Old Times
    5. Three Amigos
    6. Caddyshack
    7. Funny Farm
    8. Spies Like Us
    9. Deal Of The Century
    10. Fletch Lives
    And his work in the first season of SNL is now a classic.
    Long Live Chevy!

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  11. He did guest star on NBC's "Chuck" recently and he did a fine job there. I agree. Give him another chance, Hollywood!

    Fletch Forever!

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  12. Yes, Fletch is a work of genius. Let's hope they never remake it, as Kevin Smith once hoped to do with Ben Affleck...

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  13. stay tuned to NBC - he has a supporting role in a pilot that will probably be out this summer called "Community".

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  14. Chevy Chase is an asshole. Ask anyone who's ever worked with him and they'll agree.

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  15. i've worked with him. recently. he's cleaned up his act a lot b/c he realizes he's not getting the roles anymore. fyi.

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  16. Fletch is one of the funniest movies EVER!

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  17. Is it actually easier to type "b/c" than "because"?

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  18. Chevy Chase should do at least ONE more Vacation movie.

    BRING BACK CLARK GRISWALD!!!

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  19. I'm glad at least one person mentioned "Spies Like Us" ... Both him and Dan Aykroyd are great in that. Both could use some juice in their careers (although, new Ghostbusters aside, I read that Aykroyd doesn't want to return to acting, really). ANYWAY, Chase was once quite good and it remains to be seen whether he can age like Bill Murray has (probably not) or disappear as a limited-time-only fad.
    Also, love Vacation and Christmas Vacation, but screw the Griswalds. They're done. If we bring back Chevy, it has to be something good, something serious (not a drama, just an actual movie with real backing and smart marketing--it has to take itself seriously), and it has to be new.

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  20. Lots of good Chevy Chase vehicles listed here, however, I saw Three Amigos again recently & Chevy's role in it is actually quite nondescript, so I wouldn't include it in a list of his notable movies.

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  21. I have to say Fletch is brilliant and still holds up 23 years later. A movie not mentioned here that I really enjoyed was Memoirs of an Invisible Man. Had a few gags here and there, but it was pretty much a straight up thriller. He's got the chops still, give him something good to work with (some dignity along with the paycheck) and he may surprise us all.

    He's Chevy Chase...and I'm not.

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  22. Some of my favorite movies from my childhood:
    Modern Problems
    Oh, Heavenly Dog! (Jane Seymour, OMG!)
    Under the Rainbow
    Caddyshack
    Chevy, I'm sure you will be reading this, please lose the ego, the meek shall inherit the earth, and your complaining (like during the commentary for that animated dog movie, Doogal, when you insulted all your co-stars because the weren't Oscars winners, even though Whoopi was in it) shows what an ass-hole you really are. Be one if you must, but don't let the whole world know.

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  23. He was in Killer at Large.... www.killeratlarge.com

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  24. I agree -- I really miss Chevy... No one can quite do a deadpan like he can. F'ing hilarious.

    Anyways, I just happened to be watching "Good Luck Chuck" the other night and (I forget which part but) in the movie, Dane Cook suddenly did some absurd gasp and body twitch and hand gesture and I could have sworn it was actually a signature Chevy Chase original move. Just thought I'd mention it cuz it really made me think of the real comedy legend.

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  25. I know I'm not supposed to, but I LOVE Memoirs of an Invisible Man.

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  26. Isn't one of the main reasons Chevy's career nosedived because of his reputation as being hard to work with? (i.e., he was kind of a jerk)

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  27. Does anybody remember his satiric record album of 1980? Very funny, very musical. He could have been the Stan Freberg of our time.

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  28. We need Chevy because nobody can do a deadpan comic delivery quite like him, the only other who's comparable is Ernie Kovacs, and he died back in '62.

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  29. i think i'm of the opinion of the quote, "Chevy Chase woke up one morning and he just wasn't funny anymore."

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  31. i hope he never ever makes a film again. god i hate this guy so much.

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  32. Chase was supposedly on the actual shortlist for the role of Lester Burnham in American Beauty.

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