The Non-Return Return of John Hughes
Yesterday’s LA Times featured an article by Patrick Goldstein pointing out that the current release starring Owen Wilson, is based on an old treatment written by John Hughes, the man who gave us 1980s (and early 1990s) classics like The Breakfast Club, Pretty In Pink, Planes Trains and Automobiles, and Uncle Buck. (The last two of these are my favorites in his oeuvre.) The article discusses Hughes’ present retirement from the movie business. Since the last film he wrote and directed, Curly Sue, in 1991, Hughes’ active involvement in films has been negligible, though 1998 saw Reach The Rock, which he wrote and produced, and which went more or less straight to video in those remote pre-digital days. For over a decade, he has lived in Wisconsin, declining all interview requests; the most recent photograph of him, on the set of a film written by one of his sons, was taken in 2001. Nonetheless, Hughes’ work, as the article attests, is much admired by a new generation of directors, Judd Apatow, Kevin Smith, Wes Anderson and Ben Stiller among them.
So what’s John Hughes doing in a Nixon blog, class? Can anyone tell me? Anyone? That’s right – it was thanks to Ferris Bueller’s Day Off that former Nixon speechwriter Ben Stein graduated from American Spectator columnist (and, among a mistaken cohort, Deep Throat suspect) to the status of pop icon.