Thursday, December 19, 2013

11 Things You Might Not Know About "A Christmas Story"

Jean Shepherd's book "In God We Trust: All Others Pay Cash", which the film is partly based on, is a collection of short stories that Shepherd wrote for "Playboy" magazine during the 1960s
The film's setting is a town in Indiana, but was actually filmed in Cleveland, Ohio. Other parts were filmed in Toronto, Ontario, like the Christmas tree shopping scene, in which one of Toronto's trademark red trolleys can be seen driving by.
According to director Bob Clark, Jack Nicholson was given the script and was very much interested in the role of Mr. Parker, "The Old Man." However, Clark didn't learn of this until later and the studio didn't want to pay Nicholson's fee anyway, which would have doubled the budget.
According to Peter Billingsley (Ralphie) in the DVD Commentary, the nonsensical ramblings that Ralphie exclaims while beating up Scut Farkas were scripted, word for word.
For the scene in which Flick's tongue sticks to the flagpole, a hidden suction tube was used to safely create the illusion that his tongue had frozen to the metal.
When the character of Scut Farkas first appears, the "Wolf" music from Sergei Prokofiev's "Peter and the Wolf" plays in the background. The name "Farkas" is derived from the Hungarian word for "wolf".
Bob Clark's success with the teen-sex comedy Porky's (1982) allowed him the ability to make a movie he wanted to make. Without "Porky's" there would have been no "Christmas Story".
 Wil Wheaton auditioned for the role of Ralphie.
Actor Peter Billingsley, who plays Ralphie, has a cameo as an elf in the movie Elf.
Cameos: writer/narrator Jean Shepherd is the irate man waiting in the Santa line at the department store. Director Bob Clark is Swede, the dim-witted neighbor, who marvels at the Leg Lamp from outside.
A Christmas Story was the inspiration for the TV series, "The Wonder Years."


  1. What a cool post! Most of this I had never heard before. The hidden suction tube on the flagpole is something I never would have even imagined. I love this movie. We have to watch it every year.

  2. There is a follow-up movie called My Summer Story or It Runs in the Family. It's not as good, but it's not half bad. It's more stories from the book.

    Also, the weird goggled kid in Higbees wasn't an actor. Just a weird kid they found and put in the movie as is.

  3. LOVE! I adore this movie and quote it ALL THE TIME, much to the dismay of my children. We love when it's on a continuous loop during the holidays!

  4. Double treat! I love this movie and I love trivia -- WIN! We're going to watch it again tonight. This movie, Elf, It's a Wonderful Life, and Love, Actually get viewed A LOT in December. Great post, Cary!

  5. I love this post! We are right in the middle of watching A Christmas Story right now! We just took a break for lunch. I'm doing some last minute wrapping and cards as we watch. This is one of my favorite movies. All these facts are interesting. I knew a few of them before but there are a couple new ones in there, too. Now, I want to start the movie over so I can watch for them. I'm going to ask my ex-bf (the Hungarian) what the Hungarian word for "wolf" is! haha

  6. I've seen this so many times, I even have an "action figure" of the old man and his major award. Frah-geeeleee is a phrase we often use in our house. On a sad note, the director and his son were killed by a drunk driver a few years ago not far from here. I always say a prayer for his family when this movie comes on.

  7. This is my very favorite holiday movie, hands down! Jennifer, that goggled kid in the Santa line - HAHAHAHA! I love that kid!

  8. Okay, apparently I'm the only person in the world who has never seen this movie! I don't remember even hearing about it when it came out, and I was always under the assumption that it was a really old movie and was shocked to learn it was released the year I graduated high school. I still have never seen it!



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