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John Landis

An American Werewolf in London

I don’t think John Landis can do straight horror, but this is probably the closest he ever came to doing so.  “An American Werewolf in London” brought scenes of comedy mixed with the macabre.  Heck, some of the scenes are so hyperviolent I’m surprised they passed MPAA scrutiny, and several were cut to make the movie that made the theaters.

But the film is all about Rick Baker, the now-famous makeup artist who secretly played King Kong in the 1976 remake and created the suit he wore.

Trading Places

A staple of American comedy since the 1970s has been the “Saturday Night Live” film where cast members from the famed sketch comedy show hit the big screen with varying success levels.  The early cast members had two names involved:  Ivan Reitman, who generally stayed with Bill Murray movies, and John Landis.  Landis directed “Animal House” and made John Belushi the hottest star at the time.  He directed “The Blues Brothers” with Belushi and Dan Aykroyd (who was supposed to be in “Animal House with Chevy Chase” but that’s another story).   Animal House was the biggest mone