Splitsider

Posts tagged as animal house

How College Comedies Are Watched by All Ages of Dudes

"College is the best time of your life," is something people like to say and believe. It’s also something that self-perpetuates itself: you approach college with that special time of your life vigor and demand nothing less. Accordingly, it's the college comedy film's obligation to capture this ethos from all angles: those looking forward to college, those in college, and those looking back at college.

Animal House came out on DVD around the time I was applying for colleges. My dad swiftly purchased it for me with the advice of, "You should watch this before you go to college." I am not unique in this; dads were buying their [...]

The Lost Projects of Harold Ramis

While Harold Ramis isn’t quite a household name, he absolutely should be. As a writer/director, the man shaped the big screen personas of Bill Murray, Chevy Chase, John Candy, and Rodney Dangerfield, amongst others, defined the comedic tastes of a generation, and had more of an effect on American film humor than just about anybody in the past few decades. Before conquering Hollywood, Ramis performed at Second City Chicago, on The National Lampoon Radio Hour, and on SCTV (where he also served as head writer). Ramis then went on to write, direct, and/or star in a string of hit comedies that includes Animal House, Caddyshack, Stripes, National Lampoon's Vacation, [...]

The Community Cast Will Never Tire of Dressing In Awesome Costumes

When you're getting sick of maneuvering your way through a Halloween party while dressed as a complex visual pun tonight, think of the Community cast for strength. Here they are in an Animal House tableau as part of EW's comedy issue. The study group also paid homage to Fast Times at Ridgemont High, Porky’s, and The Breakfast Club for the issue. Seems kinda like a waste that they didn't just shoot awesome tribute episodes while they were already in those costumes. Unless maybe…they secretly did??? They must have. Robbing the world of Donald Glover's Otis Day impression would be too cruel. Too cruel.

The Before-Its-Time Raunchiness of 'Slap Shot'

We can do anything we want. We’re college students!

–Tagline for Animal House, 1978

So went the battle cry of the Deltas, the “worst” fraternity at Faber College and the anarchic scourge of its campus administration. When it was released in 1978, Animal House was a low-budget college movie with a cast of mostly unknowns that went on to bust box-office records, launch a few careers, and rocket the genre of gross-out comedies into the mainstream. By today’s standards Animal House now seems incredibly tame, almost endearingly so. But when it first hit theaters it was heralded as a subversive punch from the counterculture. This was less a reflection [...]

Is It Possible for the Star of a Single-Episode Sitcom to Save Their Career?

Since 1961, only 10 American TV series have aired for only a single episode. If there is a God, that list will soon increase to 11 when ABC decides to LISTEN TO EVERYONE EVER and cancel Work It, quite possibly the worst sitcom — nay, show — of all-time. Of the 10 (soon-to-be 11?!?), half are either dramas (1993's detective series South of Sunset and 1997's Lawless starring former-NFL linebacker Brian Bosworth), reality shows (2005’s The Will and 2008’s Secret Talents of the Stars), or Etc. (2009’s Osbournes Reloaded).

For a show to last just a single episode, well, that's impressive. I mean, that's half as long as [...]

But How Does it Hold Up?

A few weeks ago I re-watched the venerable Mel Brooks film, Blazing Saddles. I hadn’t seen the movie in at least seven years, mostly because due to my near nightly screenings of it during my teens and early twenties, there was no point. The film had been committed to memory. After finding out that my girlfriend had seen the movie only once (obviously she must have had a full social life as a young person), I decided it was high time to see this film again.

But while watching it, I began to feel uncomfortable. In my memory, this was a madcap romp with jokes flying fast and furious, [...]

There's Going to Be an Animal House Musical

Next up in a long line of beloved movies becoming musicals? National Lampoon's Animal House. Yep! The Book of Mormon's Casey Nicholaw has signed on to direct and choreograph a musical based on the 1978 film, with the score to be written by Barenaked Ladies. Matty Simmons, an original Animal House producer and founding publisher of National Lampoon magazine, is also involved as an executive producer, so the musical can't be that far off from the spirit of the movie, right? Whether you're excited or dismayed by this news, we can all agree that we will be counting the days until we get to hear the [...]

The Lost Roles of Animal House

Lost Roles is a weekly column exploring what might have been in TV and film comedy, taking a different comedian, writer, or work each week and examining the casting possibilities and career moves that almost came to be. This week: the nixed casting possibilities for the 1978 movie Animal House.

It's difficult to put into perspective how huge a pop cultural event the release of National Lampoon's Animal House was in the summer of 1978. While there was a big hubbub made over The Hangover two years ago when it became the highest-grossing R-rated comedy of all time; when inflation is factored in, that film pales in comparison [...]

The Finally Screenings: Man, Did I Hate Animal House

In The Finally Screenings, Alden Ford is watching comedy classics that, because he grew up in a cave in Alaska, he's never seen before. These are his takes on movies everyone else has seen before.

One of the exciting things about being able to write this feature is that I get the chance to see a classic comedy gem so hilarious, so perfect, so essential that I marvel that I spent the better part of three decades without absorbing its teachings. The opportunity to see a great classic comedy now is like a free ticket on the zeitgeist time machine, where I'm able to ingest the story and [...]