16 Things You Never Knew About 'Ferris Bueller's Day Off'
Despite the fact that it has actually become 30 years old this year, Ferris Bueller's Day Off remains a timeless classic. Still constantly being quoted from and referenced (I'm looking in your direction, Deadpool ), the 1986 movie is always easily rewatchable, making it one of those films that so many of us have seen more times than we'd care to admit to. It's easy to assume that you know everything about movies that you've seen countless times already, but you'd be amazed the amount of Ferris Bueller's Day Off trivia there is that you may not have been aware of. As is the case with any John Hughes movie, there are so many interesting aspects to the development, writing, casting and even production of the film that you could easily spend an entire day off of your own lost in anecdotes regarding the movie, so much so there will probably always be things you never knew about Ferris Bueller's Day Off.
From on set romances to improvised lines, casting choices to set locations and even the meticulous thought processes behind what you may have initially thought to be irrelevant design choices, Ferris Bueller's Day Off is full of the sort of hidden trivia treasures worth stealing your Dad's Ferrari for:
1. That Boring Economics Lecture Was Real
Ben Stein, who played the less than animated economics teacher, has an actual degree in economics and as such, told CNN in 2006 that Hughes requested he deliver an improvised economics lecture to the sleepy class.
2. Molly Ringwald Expressed Interest In The Role Of Sloane
But, according to the 2010 book, You Couldn't Ignore Me If You Tried: The Brat Pack, John Hughes, and Their Impact on a Generation, Ringwald said John Hughes wouldn't let her take the role. "John wouldn't let me do it," she said. "He said that the part wasn't big enough for me."
3. The Script Was Written In Less Than A Week
Unbelievably, according to AMC, Hughes wrote the near-perfect script in just under a week.
4. When Cameron Was In Teenage Land...He Wasn't Actually A Teenager
Far from it! Alan Ruck, who played Cameron, was actually 29 years old during filming.
5. Ferris' Parents Got Married In Real Life
Cindy Pickett and Lyman Ward fell in love on set and got married after filming was finished (they divorced in 1992, but that's besides the point).
6. Charlie Sheen Did Method Acting For His Small Role
According to NME, to playing the spaced out drunk kid whom Jeanie meets in the police station, Sheen reportedly stayed awake for 48 hours prior to filming in order to deliver an accurate performance for the role.
7. We Almost Had Johnny Depp Playing Ferris Bueller
According to Gamesradar, Depp was considered for the role, along with actors such as Robert Downey Jr, Tom Cruise, Michael J. Fox, John Cusack, and Jim Carrey.
8. Most Of The Car License Plates Make Reference To Other Hughes Movies
Such as Jeanie's car (TBC, for The Breakfast Club), Tom's Car (MMOM, for Mr. Mom) and Katie's car (VCTN, for National Lampoon's Vacation).
9. Cameron's Impression Of Sloane's Dad Is Based On A Stage Director
According to DVD commentary from the movie, Ruck based the voice on that of a stage director that both himself and Broderick had previously worked with.
10. Ferris Has A Poster On His Bedroom Wall Of "Don't You Forget About Me" By Simple Minds
The song was famously used at the start and end of Hughes' previous film, The Breakfast Club.
11. Cameron's Red Wings Hockey Jersey Reflect's John Hughes' Roots
Throughout the film, Cameron wears the hockey jersey of Detroit-based team the Red Wings — despite the film being set in Chicago. This might strike some as odd, but it makes perfect sense when you consider the fact that, as USA Today points out, Hughes was from Grosse Point, Michigan (which is just outside of Detroit), and grew up idolizing the player whose jersey Cameron wears, Gordie Howe.
12. Cameron Was Also Based On A Real Person
According to Hughes in the DVD commentary, he based the character on a friend of his from high school. "He was sort of a lost person. His family neglected him, so he took that as license to really pamper himself. When he was legitimately sick, he actually felt good, because it was difficult and tiring to have to invent diseases but when he actually had something, he was relaxed."
13. Broderick Improvised That Clarinet Scene
Allegedly, the clarinet was simply a background prop of Bueller's bedroom, however the actor responded that he could play it when prompted (he couldn't), providing us with that hilarious cacophony of noise he produces instead and the line: "Never had one lesson."
14. The Film Was A "Love Letter" To Chicago
Though he spent the first twelve years of his live in Grosse Point, his family moved to a suburb of Chicago when he was a teen in 1963 — Northbrook. Hughes' old high school is even included in the background of the scene where Rooney and Sloane wait for Mr. Peterson in front of the school.
15. A TV Spinoff Was Created In 1990
Acting as a prequel to the events of the movie, it starred Jennifer Aniston as Jeanie (!) and was cancelled after 13 episodes.
16. The Song "Danke Schoen" Is Heard Four Times In The Movie
The Wayne Newton song, which Hughes reportedly hated, is sang by Ferris in the shower, by Rooney when he rings the Bueller house doorbell, lip-synced by Ferris doing the parade, and is sang by Jeanie whilst she walks down the stairs of the poilce station.
You know, sometimes I wish that I was still in school just so I could relive those Ferris Bueller-style days off. Although, in retrospect, I'm pretty sure that I spent a lot of those days just laid out in bed like Cameron watching the film instead of living the film. Ferris would have been disappointed in me...
Images: Paramount Pictures (3); Giphy (4)