National Lampoon’s Animal House (1978 movie)

National Lampoon's Animal House movie 1978 trailer, cast John Belushi, Tim Matheson.

June 22, 2020 by Jessie Mendoza

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National Lampoon’s Animal House is a 1978 Americansex comedy film directed by John Landis and written by Harold Ramis, Douglas Kenney and Chris Miller. It stars John Belushi, Peter Riegert, Tim Matheson, John Vernon, Verna Bloom, Thomas Hulce, Stephen Furst, and Donald Sutherland. The film is about a trouble-making fraternity who’s members challenge the authority of the dean of the fictional Faber College.

  • Starring : John Belushi / Tim Matheson
  • Genre : Comedy
  • Country : United States
  • Language : English / Italian
  • Director : John Landis
  • Production : Universal Pictures / Oregon Film Factory / Stage III Productions / National Lampoon
  • Distributor : Universal Pictures / Cinema International Corporation (CIC) / United International Pictures (UIP) / MCA Videocassette / DiscoVision / National Broadcasting Company (NBC) / MCA Home Video / MCA/Universal Home Video / Pioneer Entertainment / Universal Studios Home Video / Columbia TriStar Home Video / Columbia TriStar Home Entertainment / Fathom Events / Filmes Lusomundo / Argentina Video Home / CIC Video / CIC Vídeo / Columbia TriStar / Netflix / RCA VideoDiscs / Turner Broadcasting System (TBS) / Universal Pictures Home Entertainment (UPHE)

National Lampoon’s Animal House movie

National Lampoon’s Animal House release date

  • July 27, 1978 : USA (New York City, New York) (premiere)
  • July 28, 1978 : USA
  • October 4, 1978 : France
  • December 20, 1978 : Sweden
  • March 1, 1979 : UK
  • March 8, 1979 : Australia
  • April 7, 1979 : Japan
  • August 6, 1979 : Spain
  • September 21, 1979 : Ireland
  • September 21, 1979 : USA (re-release)

National Lampoon’s Animal House cast

  • Tom Hulce as Larry Kroger (as Thomas Hulce)
  • Stephen Furst as Kent Dorfman
  • Mark Metcalf as Doug Neidermeyer
  • Mary Louise Weller as Mandy Pepperidge
  • Martha Smith as Babs Jansen
  • James Daughton as Greg Marmalard
  • Kevin Bacon as Chip Diller
  • John Belushi as John Blutarsky
  • Douglas Kenney as Stork
  • Chris Miller as Hardbar (as Christian Miller)
  • Bruce Bonnheim as B.B.
  • Karen Allen as Katy
  • James Widdoes as Robert Hoover
  • Tim Matheson as Eric Stratton
  • Peter Riegert as Donald Schoenstein

The film was produced by Matty Simmons of National Lampoon and Ivan Reitman for Universal Pictures. It was inspired by stories written by Miller and published in National Lampoon. The stories were based on Ramis’s experience in the Zeta Beta Tau fraternity at Washington University in St. Louis, Miller’s Alpha Delta Phi experiences at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire, and producer Reitman’s at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario.

Of the younger lead actors, only the 28-year-old Belushi was an established star, but even he had not yet appeared in a film, having gained fame mainly from his television appearances on Saturday Night Live, which was starting its third season in autumn 1977. Several of the actors who were cast as college students, including Hulce, Karen Allen, and Kevin Bacon, were just beginning their film careers, although Matheson had appeared as one of the vigilante cops in the second Dirty Harry film, Magnum Force, and had voiced the title character in Jonny Quest.

Upon its initial release, Animal House received generally mixed reviews from critics, but Time and Roger Ebert proclaimed it one of the year’s best. Filmed for only $2.8 million, it garnered an estimated gross of more than $142 million in the form of theatrical rentals and home video, not including merchandising, making it the highest grossing comedy film of its time.

The film, along with 1977’s The Kentucky Fried Movie, also directed by Landis, was largely responsible for defining and launching the gross out film genre, which became one of Hollywood’s staples. In 2001, the United States Library of Congress deemed Animal House “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant” and selected it for preservation in the National Film Registry. It was No. 1 on Bravo’s “100 Funniest Movies”. It was No. 36 on AFI’s “100 Years… 100 Laughs” list of the 100 best American comedies. In 2008, Empire magazine selected it as #279 of “The 500 Greatest Movies of All Time.”

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