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Creator / Chevy Chase

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"I made about twenty-eight movies, and I think about five of them were good."

He's Chevy Chase (born Cornelius Crane Chase on October 8, 1943 in New York City), an American actor/comedian known for his pratfalls... and you're not.

Chase began a full-time career in comedy by joining the National Lampoon Radio Hour in 1973; he and many other comedians on the program would later become the original cast members of Saturday Night Live. He was known for his physical comedy, particularly his impressions of then-President Gerald Ford (which wasn't so much an accurate impression or even one that was hilariously exaggerated to the point of being perceived as real by the general public as it was an excuse for Chevy to do his pratfallsnote ). He was also the original Weekend Update Anchor — "Good evening. I'm Chevy Chase, and you're not."

Chase received a lot of praise for his role in the show, though he left in the middle of the second season, returning later to host eight timesnote , one of whichnote  had him appear live via a television set because Chase missed his flight and couldn't get to the studio to do rehearsals in time; another of whichnote  was done with Steve Martin and Martin Short to promote The Three Amigos; and the last of whichnote  was his final time before he was banned for being high on painkillers and harassing the cast and crew. Chase was SNL's most frequent former cast member to come back and host. Along with Bill Murray and Dan Aykroyd, Chase is also one in three members of the "Not Ready for Primetime" era of SNL (fall of 1975 to spring of 1980) to come back and host the show. Chase is also one of the few members of the "Five Timers Club"note  to have been a cast member on the show, joining Bill Murray and Tina Fey.

After SNL, Chase begin taking film roles with appearances in hit films such as Caddyshack, National Lampoon's Vacation and its sequels, and ¡Three Amigos!, roles that would make him a highly paid actor in the late '80s. He also hosted the Academy Awards in 1987 and 1988. However, his career went in decline in the '90s as many of his films flopped at the box office, with even Vegas Vacation being a commercial disappointment. He hosted a talk show in 1993 called The Chevy Chase Show, which only lasted for five weeks. He gained some prominence again with the role of Pierce Hawthorne in the TV show Community, though he did have creative issues with the show's creator Dan Harmon throughout its run, leaving that show in the 4th season. (Though, ironically, Harmon was not working on the show at that point.)

As might be hinted by some of the above events, he has a reputation that could charitably be described as "difficult".

Works featuring Chevy Chase include:

Tropes associated with this actor:

  • All Men Are Perverts: A lot of his roles have him being a lech. If the character's single, he'll get the girl. If not, he'll get a chance for no particular reason, but stick with his partner. It's this trope, rather than The Casanova, because he's usually really creepy about it, in the way that 80s "heroes" often were. Unlike the movies, though, Chase never grew out of it.
  • At Least I Admit It: He knows and admits to being difficult, if his previous interviews in the 2000's are any indication. He simply doesn't care.
  • The Big Guy: He is 6'4" and was the first of SNL's many tall, white male cast members. Chase, Randy Quaid (from the 1985–86 season), Charles Rocket (1980–81 season), and Kevin Nealon (1986–95 seasons) are tied as the tallest SNL cast members.
  • The Comically Serious: Much of the humor in his early roles, especially on SNL, came from the contrast between his straight-laced, upper-class WASP persona and the ridiculous stuff he said and did as well as his ability to say absurd things with a completely serious, newscaster like tone which made his "Weekend Update" segment especially popular.
  • Deadpan Snarker: In his earlier roles and peak period, he could match Bill Murray easily when it came to snark and delivering bitter, sarcastic lines in a tone of barely concealed rage and disdain.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: His first claim to fame was writing a single back-page gag for MAD in 1970.
  • Old Shame: His 2002 Friars Club Roast. To call it brutal would be kind, at best. In short, almost no one famous showed up, a running joke through the roast. Those that did offered very little in the way of genuine praise. Most of the then-B-list comics that tore him a new one and took very personal shots. The horrified look on Chevy's face revealed he knew how bad it was going, and when it was his turn to get revenge, he offered a few pathetic shots at his tormentors, saying "that hurt" after it was over with. Comedy Central has yet to rebroadcast it due to how unnerving it was to watch. Former SNL castmate Laraine Newman gave this particularly painful barb: "When Chevy left Saturday Night Live, he said he wanted to follow his dream, to make crap movies and host the worst talk show in history. We all knew he could do it!".
  • The Pete Best: To Steely Dan. He was the drummer in Donald Fagen and Walter Becker's proto-Steely Dan band The Leather Canary when they were all at Bard College in the late '60s, which perfunctorily summarizes the brief history between Chase, Fagen and Becker in any general article on either subject.


Video Example(s):


Clark Griswold Freaks Out

Clark Griswold has a few things to say about his boss after he finds out that he's not getting a Christmas bonus this year.....

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