Night at the Museum

DESCRIPTION:

A night watchman (Ben Stiller) at a museum of natural history makes a startling discovery. Thanks to the unleashing of an ancient Egyptian curse, the museum's animals, birds, bugs and other exhibits spring to life after the building closes. Former President Teddy Roosevelt (Robin Williams) is among those the hapless guard encounters. Based on the book by Milan Trenc.

PG - 1 hour 48 mins

REVIEW:

By Lisa Schwarzbaum

Doing night-guard duty when the entire Museum of Natural History comes alive, Ben Stiller doesn't Focker around nearly enough. A nice, dull movie wrenched from a wild premise and battered into docility. C+

CAST:

Ben Stiller

Date of Birth 7 February 1965, Andrews, South Carolina, USA

Ben Stiller was born on November 30, 1965, in New York, New York to legendary comedians Jerry Stiller and Anne Meara. It's not surprising that Ben Stiller has followed in his family's footsteps. Ben's parents made no real effort to keep their son away from the Hollywood lifestyle and he grew up among the stars, wondering just why his parents were so popular. At a young age, he and his sister Amy Stiller would perform plays at home, wearing Amy's tights to perform Shakespeare. Ben also picked up an interest in being on the other side of the camera and, at age 10, began shooting films on his Super 8 camera. The plots were always simple: someone would pick on the shy, awkward Stiller...and then he would always get his revenge. This desire for revenge on the popular, good-looking people may have motivated his teen-angst opus Reality Bites (1994) later in his career. He both directed and performed in the film, which costarred Winona Ryder and Ethan Hawke.

Before he even got his start in Hollywood, Ben put in several consistently solid years in the theater. After dropping out of UCLA, he performed in the Tony Award winner, "The House of Blue Leaves". While working on the play, Stiller shot a short spoof of The Color of Money (1986) starring him (in the Tom Cruise role) and his The House of Blue Leaves (1987) (TV) costar John Mahoney (in the Paul Newman role). The short film was so funny that Lorne Michaels purchased it and aired it on "Saturday Night Live" (1975). This led to Ben spending a year on the show in 1989.

Ben made his big screen debut in Steven Spielberg's Empire of the Sun (1987) in 1987. Demonstrating early on the multifaceted tone his career would take, he soon stepped behind the camera to direct Back to Brooklyn for MTV. The network was impressed and gave Stiller his own show, "The Ben Stiller Show" (1992). He recruited fellow offbeat comedians Janeane Garofalo and Andy Dick and created a bitingly satirical show. MTV ended up passing on it, but it was picked up by Fox. Unfortunately, the show was a ratings miss. Stiller was soon out of work, although he did have the satisfaction of picking up an Emmy for the show after its cancellation.

For a while, Ben had to settle for guest appearance work. While he was doing this, he saved up his cash and in the end was able to scrape enough together to make Reality Bites (1994), now a cult classic which is looked upon favorably by the generation it depicted. Ben continued to work steadily for a time, particularly in independent productions where he was more at ease. However, he never quite managed to catch a big break. His first big budget directing job was Jim Carrey's The Cable Guy (1996). Although many critics were impressed, Jim Carrey's fans were not.

In 1998, There's Something About Mary (1998) had propelled Ben into the mainstream spotlight. With his wince-inducing turn in the Farrelly brothers' gross-out film, Ben really "struck a nerve" with mainstream America. In recent years, Ben has starred in such hit movies as Keeping the Faith (2000) and Meet the Parents (2000). Ben excels at cerebral comedy, but he knows how to get down and lowbrow when he needs to, making him one of America's currently most popular performers.

Produced a short film parody of The Color of Money (1986) entitled "The Hustler of Money" which got him noticed by "Saturday Night Live" (1975) who eventually offered him employment there.

  • Son of Anne Meara and Jerry Stiller.
  • Brother of Amy Stiller.
  • Engaged to Christine Taylor. [November 1999]
  • Longtime girlfriend was Jeanne Tripplehorn.
  • Is a major fan of Tom Cruise and has impersonated Tom for many years. He even portrayed Tom Cruise's fictitious crazed stunt double, Tom Crooze, on 2000 MTV Movie Awards (2000) (TV) on a segment called Mission: Improbable. (This segment is included on the Mission: Impossible II (2000) DVD.) Tom and Ben have been friends ever since 1996.
  • Appeared in "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire" (1998) on May 9, 2001 and walked away with $32,000 for his charity. He phoned his mother, actress Anne Meara, for help but lost on the question.
  • Often casts/co-stars with Janeane Garofalo.
  • Ben and his wife Christine Taylor, have both guest starred on the TV-show "Friends" (1994), though not in the same episode.
  • Attended UCLA School of Theater, Film, and Television.
  • Daughter, Ella Olivia, born 10 April 2002 in Los Angeles.
  • Briefly appears in the filmclip for the song "Tribute" by Tenacious D, a band that includes fellow actors Jack Black and Kyle Gass. He's one of the people walking past the studio booth in the shopping centre.
  • Ranked #78 in Premiere's 2003 annual Power 100 List. Had ranked #68 in 2002 and #80 in 2001.
  • His famous parents, Anne Meara and Jerry Stiller, often make cameo appearances in his movies.
  • Has a Hollywood "clique" of close friends that have often appeared in his movies: Owen Wilson, Jack Black, Kyle Gass and Janeane Garofalo.
  • Helped Jenifer Estess raised millions of dollars to combat A.L.S. (Lou Gehrig's disease).
  • His favorite actress of all time is Diane Keaton. He even wrote an article about her for Premiere magazine in 1997.
  • Frequent co-star of Vince Vaughn, appearing with him in three movies in 2004 alone.
  • Is a member of, what the media refers to as, "The Frat Pack," along with Will Ferrell, Jack Black, Vince Vaughn, Steve Carell, Owen Wilson, and Luke Wilson. The "Frat Pack" name is a reference to the film, Old School (2003), featuring Vaughn, Ferrell and Luke Wilson, due to the wide number of films featuring the seven actors. Stiller's "Frat Pack" films include Zoolander (2001), Envy (2004), The Royal Tenenbaums (2001) and Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004).
  • Is a big fan of "Star Trek" (1966). He named his production company "Red Hour Films" after an alien riot featured in the episode "Star Trek: The Return of the Archons (#1.21)" (1967).
  • Holds a distinct Razzie Award record - nominated for most titles in one year. He was nominated in 2004 for Worst Actor in five of the six films in which he appeared: Along Came Polly (2004), Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004), Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story (2004), Envy (2004)_, and Starsky & Hutch (2004). The only film he was not nominated in for that year was Meet the Fockers (2004).
  • Has played two very similar characters in the movies Heavy Weights (1995) and Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story (2004). In both films he plays an obnoxious, slightly insane and formerly overweight fitness instructor who's hell-bent on getting others into shape, and perhaps also on making other peoples' lives miserable.
  • Played the part of an arrogant director in Get Shorty (1995), but the scene was cut.
  • Son Quinlin Dempsey was born July 10, 2005 in Los Angeles
  • In episode "The King of Queens: Shrink Wrap (#4.25)" (2002) of "The King of Queens" (1998) he played his own real-life father's father.
  • Hosted the MTV Movie Awards in 1996 along with Janeane Garofalo
  • He and his wife, Christine Taylor, have both guest-starred on the TV-show "Arrested Development" (2003). She played "Michael Bluth"'s love interest "Sally Sitwell" (2 episodes) and Ben Stiller himself played the incompetent magician "Tony Wonder" in the episode: "The sword of destiny".
  • Wife Christine gave birth to their second child, Quinlin Dempsey Stiller, born on July 10, 2005 at 8lb. 2oz. in Los Angeles, California
  • One of his first showbiz jobs was working as an intern on the Alan Thicke show "Thicke of the Night" (1983).
  • Mother is Irish.
  • Was considered for the role of "Willy Wonka" in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005).
  • Revealed in 2005 that he has bipolar disorder and that it runs in his family.
  • His wife, Christine Taylor, appeared in one episode of "Seinfeld" (1990) as Jerry Seinfeld's girlfriend. His father, Jerry Stiller, had a recurring role on that series as George Costanza's father.
    • Personal Quotes
  • On advice he receives from his father Jerry Stiller: "My father is always telling me to take care of myself and get a lot of rest. He's always saying, "Sleep will fix anything. Go take a nap". I think he's right. I find when I get frazzled, if I get a good night's sleep, I feel much better about things".
  • "If my parents were like, plumbers, who knows what I would be doing?"
  • "There's an old saying in Hollywood: It's not the length of your film, it's how you use it."
  • "I have no problem with straight actors playing gay, but I always feel like I can tell. Does that sound horrible?"
  • "I have not been an easygoing guy. I think it's called bipolar manic depression. I've got a rich history of that in my family. Our family has publicly gone into therapy, so that's out in the open."
  • "I pay a huge chunk of money to my agent and publicity people to shield me from my fan mail. I don't even want to know how many letters I get. I don't see fan mail as a good thing. It always makes me think of stalkers."
  • "Normally, people tend to shut off their ambitions and competitive thinking because it doesn't help them much in normal life. But in the movie business you've constantly got to prove yourself. So I can be a real asshole on the set sometimes."
  • "Show business is great, but when you're in a movie that made more than $120 million, the perspective changes. I'd never had the experience of being in a movie that so many people found funny. After the enormous success of There's Something About Mary (1998), I was able to command much more money and I got recognized more. But the reason for all this is only because the movie made money, not because I'm any more talented or better looking".
  • "Every actor is out there trying to get parts, auditioning, going to acting class and creating a network of people who are in the same position you are. I couldn't sit around and wait to get work, because it wasn't happening. I would just try to create my own projects with friends who were filmmakers."
  • Carla Gugino

    Date of Birth 29 August 1971, Sarasota, Florida, USA

    Carla was born in Sarasota, Florida. Moved with her mother to Paradise, California, when Carla was just five years old. During her childhood, they moved many times within the state. But she remained a straight-A student throughout high school and graduated as valedictorian. A major modeling agency discovered Carla in San Diego and sent her to New York to begin a new career when she was 15. New York was more than she could handle at that young age, so she returned to LA in the summer, modeling and enrolling in an acting class at the suggestion of her aunt, Carol Merrill, known from "Let's Make a Deal" (1963). During her free time, Carla enjoys yoga, traveling and spending time with her friends in Los Angeles.

  • Had a kidney operation when she was only 4 years old.
  • Niece of actress Carol Merrill.
  • Modeled for the prestigious Elite agency as a teenager but was considered too short for fashion runway work.
  • Has a butterfly tattoo on the inside of her left ankle.
  • Italian-American.
  • Was her high school's valedictorian.
  • Boyfriend is writer/director Sebastian Gutierrez, with whom she has worked on several productions.
  • She turned down the role of Vin Diesel's love interest in the box-office hit The Pacifier (2005) to take a small but unforgettably sexy role in Sin City (2005) because she had enjoyed working with director Robert Rodriguez in the three "Spy Kids" films.
  • Her small size, which had worked against her when she was trying to be a model, later worked for her, as she was cast with diminutive actors like Michael J. Fox in "Spin City" (1996) and Antonio Banderas in the "Spy Kids" films.
  • Is of Italian, Irish, and English descent.
  • Dick Van Dyke

    Date of Birth 13 December 1925, West Plains, Missouri, USA

    Although he'd had small roles beforehand, Dick Van Dyke was launched to stardom in the 1960 musical "Bye-Bye Birdie" (for which he won a Tony Award), and then later in the movie based on that play, Bye Bye Birdie (1963). He has starred in a number of films throughout the years (including Mary Poppins (1964), Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968), and Fitzwilly (1967)), as well as a number of successful television series (which won him no less than four Emmys), and three made-for-CBS movies. After separating from his wife Margie Willett in the 1970s, Dick later became involved with Michelle Triola Marvin. Margie and Dick had four children born during the first ten years of their marriage - Barry Van Dyke, Carrie Beth van Dyke, Christian Van Dyke and Stacy Van Dyke - all of whom are now in their forties and married themselves. He has seven grandchildren, including Shane Van Dyke, Carey Van Dyke, Wes, and Taryn (Barry's children), and family members often appear with him on "Diagnosis Murder" (1993).

  • Often hosted game shows when he was a struggling actor. He hosted "Mother's Day" (1958) and "Laugh Line" (1959) but turned down "The Price Is Right" (1956).
  • His romantic companion for the last couple decades has been Michelle Triola Marvin.
  • Brother of entertainer Jerry Van Dyke.
  • Son Barry Van Dyke and grandson Carey Van Dyke also worked on "Diagnosis Murder" (1993) with him. Sons Barry Van Dyke and Christian Van Dyke also appeared in an episode of "The Dick Van Dyke Show" (1961). The storyline showed Dick visiting son Ritchie's grade school class for "Daddy's Day", when fathers visited the classroom to explain what they did for a living.
  • Daughter Stacy Van Dyke guest starred on "Diagnosis Murder" (1993), in "Diagnosis Murder: Murder in the Family (#4.12)" (1996). Grandson Shane Van Dyke guest-starred in 14 episodes of "Diagnosis Murder" (1993).
  • According to his book "Those Funny Kids: A Treasury of Classroom Laughter", by age 11 he had grown to 6'1".
  • Is ambidextrous.
  • Served in the U.S. Air Force.
  • He enlisted to be a pilot in the Army Air Corps during WWII, but initially did not make the cut because he did not meet the weight requirement (he was underweight). He tried 3 times to enlist, before barely making the cut. He actually served as a radio announcer during the war, and he did not leave the U.S.
  • He and his wife, Margie, married on the radio show "Bride and Groom" because the show paid for the wedding rings, a honeymoon, and household appliances. After their wedding, the Van Dykes were so poor that they had to live in their car for a while.
  • Beat out Johnny Carson for the role of Rob Petrie on what later became "The Dick Van Dyke Show" (1961) .
  • He won a Tony Award for "Bye Bye Birdie" and a Grammy Award for the Mary Poppins (1964) soundtrack.
  • His comic inspiration was Stan Laurel. He says he was able to find him by looking up his name in the phone book in Santa Monica, California, where Laurel lived. He called and Laurel invited him over. The two became good friends. When Laurel died, Van Dyke delivered his eulogy at the funeral.
  • Says that his most memorable role is that of Burt the chimneysweep in Mary Poppins (1964).
  • Overcame alcoholism in the 1970s.
  • Children: Christian Van Dyke, Barry Van Dyke, Stacy Van Dyke and Carrie Beth van Dyke. Grandchildren: Carey Van Dyke, Shane Van Dyke, Wes Van Dyke and Taryn Van Dyke. Great-granddaughter: Ava Van Dyke.
  • Became a great-grandfather on July 26, 2001, when his grandson Carey Van Dyke (Barry Van Dyke's oldest child) and his wife Anne Van Dyke had a baby girl named Ava Van Dyke.
  • He finally received his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1992. But when the star was unveiled, his name was misspelled on the star as "VANDYKE". Being a good sport he laughed, took a pen and drew a slash between "VAN" and "DYKE". The star was corrected soon after.
  • His album "Songs I Like By Dick Van Dyke" (Command Records, 1963), released at the height of his TV success and just before the release of Mary Poppins (1964), was actually a best-seller, remaining on Billboard's top-40 albums chart for several weeks in late 1963-early 1964.
  • In Britain, his attempt at a Cockney accent in Mary Poppins (1964) is so notorious that a "Dick Van Dyke accent" is an accepted slang term for an American's unsuccessful attempt at a British accent. Despite that, he is quite popular in Britain.
  • In July, 1999 he was made an honorary life member of The Society for the Preservation and Encouragement of Barbershop Quartet Singing in America (SPEBSQSA), Inc. at their annual International Convention in Anaheim, California. He sings bass in a quartet called "The Vantastix" with his former wife's stockbroker.
  • The album "Songs I Like By Dick Van Dyke" was recorded on Friday, November 22, 1963. Early in the recording session the artists and orchestra were informed of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in Dallas, Texas. In spite of the tragic news, and a deadline from Command Records that had to be met, the recording session continued to a successful conclusion - albeit in an emotionally-charged atmosphere. He said that he scarcely remembers the session because he was in such a state of shock after hearing the news.
  • Rob Petrie, Van Dyke's role on "The Dick Van Dyke Show" (1961), was ranked #22 in TV Guide's list of the "50 Greatest TV Dads of All Time" [20 June 2004 issue].
  • He won a Grammy Award for the Mary Poppins (1964) soundtrack.
  • Won Broadway's 1961 Tony Award as Best Supporting or Featured Actor (Musical) for "Bye, Bye Birdie."
  • Although he had light brown hair when he was in his 30s and 40s, he had blonde hair as a child.
  • In his 30s and 40s he had a talent for playing crotchety, eccentric old men. He played this kind of role in Mary Poppins (1964) ("Mr. Dawes Sr.") and in a "The Dick Van Dyke Show" (1961) episode (where he played one of Rob Petrie's elderly relatives).
  • Played Lionel Jeffries's son in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968) even though Jeffries is actually six months his junior.
  • Is a close friend of his "The Dick Van Dyke Show" (1961) co-star Mary Tyler Moore.
  • Grew up in Danville, Illinois, with brother Jerry Van Dyke and fellow celebs Gene Hackman and Bobby Short. Was a graduate of Danville High School, where he was in the drama club.
  • Has lived with Michelle Triola since the mid-80s.
  • Was offered the role of Ambassador Thorn in The Omen (1976) (before it went to Gregory Peck), but turned it down because of the film's violent and gory content.
  • Dabbled in computer animation since the 80s. Using Newtek's Lightwave 3D from home, he created and animated a CG version of himself that he danced with on The Dick Van Dyke Show Revisited (2004) (TV).
    • Personal Quotes
  • "I've retired so many times now it's getting to be a habit."
  • "I remember in the book that Caractacus was married. There was no love interest, no love story. So I think bringing Truly Scrumptious in works very well because we had assumed he was a widower. And they couldn't have picked a better Truly Scrumptious than Sally [Sally Ann Howes]. They came up with Sally Ann and I heard her voice, and it was the richest contralto. She auditioned with 'The Lovely Lonely Man', and I thought, 'My God, this girl is great!' and then she was stunningly beautiful. She loved those kids and they loved her, which I think comes across on the screen. They just thought a great deal of her, and she spent a lot of time with them, you know, between shots - telling stories and playing games during all those long waiting periods."
  • "I never wanted to be an actor, and to this day I don't. I can't get a handle on it. An actor wants to become someone else. I am a song-and-dance man and I enjoy being myself, which is all I can do."
    • Where Are They Now
  • (October 2000) Announces he will be retiring from acting and will be leaving "Diagnosis Murder" (1993) at the end of Season 8 (2000-2001).
  • (January 2006) He and his son, Barry Van Dyke, returned to television in the Hallmark Channel movie, Murder 101 (2006) (TV).
  • Mickey Rooney

    Date of Birth 23 September 1920, Brooklyn, New York, USA

    With parents who were actors, it comes as no surprise that the young Joe Yule Jr. made his debut on the stage at the age of only 15 months. He became part of the family act. He became well known for a series of some 50 silent comedies between 1927 and 1933 in which he played Mickey McGuire, a comic-strip character. In 1934 he was signed to MGM. At Mrs. Lawlor's School for Professional Children he first met Judy Garland , whom he would play against in several movies in the future, including some of the 15 "Andy Hardy" films. He gave a memorable performance as Puck in A Midsummer Night's Dream (1935). With movies like The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1939) and National Velvet (1944) he reached the peak of his career during WWII. He was drafted during the war, and when he returned to Hollywood his fame and box-office draw had significantly decreased. Just like other child stars, he found it difficult to get a break as an adult actor. After Summer Holiday (1948) his career went downhill and the 1950s for him became a string of not-so-successful movies. He got his own TV show, "The Mickey Rooney Show" (1954) and toured nightclubs and theatres again in the 1960s. In 1983, following 60 years as an actor, he received the "Lifetime Achievement" Oscar."

  • Mickey's son Teddy Rooney appeared with him in Andy Hardy Comes Home (1958), portraying - who else? - Andy Hardy Jr.
  • Son of Scottish-born vaudevillian/actor Joe Yule.
  • Loves golf and the ponies.
  • Was considered for the role of Archie Bunker on "All in the Family" (1971).
  • Father of Tim Rooney and Mickey Rooney Jr., from his marriage to Betty Jane Rase.
  • Father of Jimmy Rooney and Jonelle Rooney, from his marriage to Carolyn Hockett.
  • Liza Minnelli wanted Rooney to do the eulogy at the funeral for her mother, Judy Garland in June of 1969, but decided against it because she felt that Rooney might not be able to get through it, given his and Garland's long and close friendship.
  • Was co-owner for many years of the Mickey Rooney Tabas Hotel in Downingtown, Passadena.
  • In his autobiography, he made a passing reference to a brothel called "The T&M Studio," where the ladies were look-alikes for Hollywood starlets. There were rumors of such a brothel, but before Rooney's book no one would ever admit to ever having been there, or even verify its existence. He wrote that Groucho Marx had taken him there (only once), and Groucho appeared to be on a first-name basis with many of the ladies.
  • Originally came to Hollywood to audition for "Our Gang" (aka "The Little Rascals" (1955)), but didn't get in.
  • Stepfather of Christopher Aber and Mark Aber Rooney.
  • According to one story, Mickey Mouse was named for Rooney. Walt Disney saw a young Rooney while he was working on the first drawings of what was to become Mickey Mouse. He asked the child actor what he thought of the drawings and also asked what his name was.
  • Was nominated for Broadway's 1980 Tony Award as Best Actor (Musical) for "Sugar Babies."
  • His third child, Teddy Rooney, was born weighing 7 lb. 3 oz. on April 13, 1950, to Martha Vickers.
  • With movie appearances stretching from 1926 to 2007, totaling 81 years, his is the longest career in cinema history, surpassing that of Lillian Gish.
  • Underwent double heart bypass surgery in 2000.
  • Was number 7 on the World Poker Tour Invitational even though he had never played Texas Hold 'Em poker before.
  • Is portrayed by Moosie Drier in Rainbow (1978) (TV) and by Dwayne Adams in Life with Judy Garland: Me and My Shadows (2001) (TV)
  • Father of Kelly Ann Rooney, Kerry Yule Rooney, Michael Joseph Kyle Rooney and Jimmy W. Rooney, from his marriage to Carolyn Mitchell.
  • At age nineteen became the first teenager to be Oscar-nominated in a leading role for Babes in Arms (1939).
  • Former roommate of Blake Edwards.
  • His first of eight marriages was to Ava Gardner but has been married to current wife Jan Rooney longer than all of the other seven wives combined.
  • Has two grandchildren (Shannon Rooney and Dominique Rooney) and two great-grandchildren (Kaitlyn Rooney and Hunter Rooney).
  • He is most proud of his film The Black Stallion (1979).
  • Attended the 2006 Twilight Zone Convention at the Hilton Hasbrouck Heights, Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey, August 12-13, 2006.
  • Stepfather of David Kessel
  • As of 2007, he is the only surviving screen actor to appear in silent films and still continue to act in movies into the 21st century. His film debut was in the movie Not to Be Trusted (1926) in 1926 at the age of four.
    • Personal Quotes
  • "I'm in pretty good shape for the shape I'm in." - Mickey Rooney at 58
  • Would he marry all those women again? "Absolutely. I loved every one of them."
  • "My partners weren't what we call in horse racing parlance routers. They were sprinters; they went out of the gate, but then they stopped. They couldn't go the distance."
  • "People say, 'How can you be married eight times?' But I played the hand dealt me the way I was supposed to. I was friendly with most of my ex-wives. My God, there's a Mickey Rooney's Former Wives Marching Band!"
  • On his marriages: "When I say I do, the Justice of the Peace replies, 'I know, I know.' I'm the only man in the world whose marriage license reads, 'To Whom it May Concern.' But to have been married eight times is not normal. That's only half-way intelligent."
  • "You've got to recognize, there will never be another you. It has nothing to do with ego; it happens to be the truth. There will never be another person the same. There'll never be another you. There'll never be another me... And there'll never be another show like this!"
  • "The audience and I are friends. They allowed me to grow up with them. I've let them down several times. They've let me down several times. But we're all family."
  • "Had I been brighter, the ladies been gentler, the Scotch weaker, the gods kinder, the dice hotter - it might have all ended up in a one-sentence story."
  • "Love wears off too quickly."
  • "I don't regret anything I've ever done. I only wish I could have done more."
  • "I was a 14-year-old boy for 30 years."
  • Upon winning his lifetime achievement Oscar, 1983: "Tonight, I could even kiss Louis B. Mayer!"
  • On his life-long friend and frequent co-star, Judy Garland: "Judy turned to drugs because she was in pain and because drugs made her feel good. As one of the MGM kids, she'd been treated for most of her life to magical, instant, solutions to everything...She could never accept herself so she was always on the run."
  • "I didn't ask to be short. I didn't want to be short. I've tried to pretend that being a short guy didn't matter."
  • "The guys with the power in Hollywood today, the guys with their names above the title, are thieves. They don't make movies, they make deals. Their major function is to cut themselves in for ten per cent of the gross - off the top, of course - which is why they make movies that cost fifty million dollars."
  • "Clinton was a Rhodes Scholar. Do you know who the scholars were? Marxists!"
  • "I just want to be a professional. I couldn't live without acting."
  • "There may be a little snow on the mountain, but there's a lot of fire in the furnace."
  • "All the muddy waters of my life cleared up when I gave myself to Christ."
  • "I've been through four publics. I've been coming back like a rubber ball for years."