Back in 1983, National Lampoon magazine launched its “Vacation” film franchise. The film’s screenwriter was the man who would become eminent ’80s teenage angst writer-director John Hughes, who initially wrote “Vacation” for the magazine — not the big screen.
Chevy Chase, now 68 years old, starred as the quintessential air-headed middle class dad. As Clark Griswold, he fantasized about a certain sports car-driving super model (Christie Brinkley) when he wasn’t falling asleep at the wheel or imparting cryptic wisdom on his son. The rest of the Griswold nuclear clan was comprised of Beverly D’Angelo (Ellen), Dana Barron (Audrey) and Anthony Michael Hall (Rusty).
“I just remembered laughing and having a great, great experience the whole summer,” Hall, now 44, told ABC’s Good Morning America — who interviewed the group as they were at Entertainment Weekly for its annual reunions magazine issue. Hall was just 14 years old when “Vacation” was made.
The laughs have endured through the years as the cast says they have remained in touch. ”We have this standing thing,” explained D’Angelo, who, by the way, is now 60 years old and still looking gorgeous! “…like ,’We gotta go into Warner Bros. and pitch another movie!’ ‘Yeah, let’s do it!’ And then we’ll go — ‘Who’s the head of Warner Bros. now?’ ‘I don’t know. What are you doing on Saturday?'”
Hall concurs — Chase is still egging on the laughs and ribbing him after all these years. “Going back to 1983, a hundred years ago, he would always rip you and give you s–t,” he told EW. Apparently Chase is still dishing it, pretending to mistake him for an assistant, according to Hall: “When he pulled up for the Entertainment Weekly shoot I was outside with Beverly, and Chevy pulls up in his Benz. As he slowly starts to open his car door, he looked at me and said, ‘Can I get a coffee?'”
“It’s the best family and rapport of actors I’ve ever seen,” Barron, now 46, told EW. Barron was 16 years old when she portrayed a teen girl who famously expressed to her family that she had a distinctively womanly experience as their car had been dangerously driven off the road. (And if you don’t know what I’m referring to — watch the movie!)
Then there’s Chase’s iconic scene when he dances seductively with a bologna sandwich in an awkward attempt to impress the mysterious and sexy Brinkley. “It just came about,” Chase told ABC’s GMA. “She’s dancing to some music that’s coming out of her car…and I’ve got the sandwich, and I’m just watching her dance, and I start to dance a little, like Clark would. And I’ve got this sandwich that I’m eating anyway. At some point I just decided to [flash the bologna].”