When it was released in 1990, Home Alone became an instant Christmas classic! It follows a young boy who, after accidentally being left alone, has to defend the family home from a couple of burglars. The film killed it at the box office and launched Macaulay Culkin into superstardom.
We’ve pulled together 11 cool Home Alone facts…
1) Joe Pesci kept swearing in scenes
Mostly known for gritty and violent gangster films, Joe Pesci kept dropping the F bomb during scenes where he was agitated by Kevin’s boobytraps, which obviously had to be scrapped as it was a family film. Columbus told him to say ‘fridge’ instead.
2) John Candy’s lines were improvised
Similar to Breakfast Club, where writer John Hughes allowed the actors to improvise their reasons for being in detention, John Candy was given the freedom to ad-lib all his lines in the film. A good friend of Hughes, John Candy played the role for just $414.
3) Pesci avoided Culkin on set to come across as extra mean
On set, Joe Pesci would avoid the child actor to come across as mean; this probably showed in the finished film, where Kevin is pitted against Harry. In the scene where the crooks finally catch Kevin and hang him on the door hook, you can see real fear in his face.
4) Buzz’s girlfriend was a boy
Remember when Kevin picks up a photo of his brother Buzz’s girlfriend and says, ‘woof’? The person in the picture is actually a boy dressed up as a girl. The director, Chris Columbus, didn’t want to upset a girl by mocking her appearance, so he had the art director’s son dress up.
5) One famous line was improvised
Lots of classic movie quotes are made up on the spot by actors. Macaulay Culkin dropped one such line in Home Alone. ‘You guys give up, or are you thirsty for more,’ wasn’t in the script; the child actor ad-libbed it.
6) The trap map was drawn by Culkin
An iconic part of the film was the hand drawn map of the house that Kevin uses to plan and lay out all his booby traps. But this wasn’t a piece sketched out by the props department. For full authenticity, Macaulay Culkin drew the map himself.
7) Highest grossing comedy
The film has an enormous success at the box office, bringing in $477 million worldwide! At the time of the film’s release in 1990, it was entered into the Guinness Book of Records for being the highest grossing comedy in history.
8) Daniel Stern wore rubber feet
Daniel Stern, who plays hapless crook Marv, wore rubber feet during the scenes where the character is barefoot; including when he’s coming through the window, and crushing Christmas tree decorations. Incidentally, those decorations weren’t real – they were made from candy!
9) The Home Alone sled is in Chris Columbus’ office
The sled that Kevin uses to slide down the stairs ended up being signed by the entire cast, and to this day can be found in director Chris Columbus’s office.
10) The Playboy pages were taped together
At one point, we see Kevin leafing through one of his brother’s Playboy magazines. To stop the young actor from seeing anything he shouldn’t, the pages were taped together to hide any rude parts.
11) Columbus bagged the job because of his dislike for Chevy Chase
The year before Home Alone was released, Chris Columbus was hired by John Hughes to direct another festive favourite: National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. It was soon apparent, though, that Columbus did not get on with the film’s star, Chevy Chase, and so he asked Hughes if there were any other films he could direct. Home Alone is the film Hughes gave him.
There you have it – 11 pieces of Home Alone trivia!
Home Alone trailer
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