Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol has been adapted, oh probably about 200 or so times. Everyone from Kelsey Grammer to Fred Flintstone has put on Ebenezer Scrooge’s top hat, and at this point, Tiny Tim’s tale of woe has become more than a little stale. Yet, somehow in 1988, the holiday classic got a fresher remake than audiences had seen in decades when Bill Murray slipped into the character of Frank Cross, a cynical TV executive who’s only concern was making a buck on Christmas Eve.
The movie marked Bill Murray’s return to starring in comedies after a four-year hiatus, incorporating the actor’s trademark sarcasm and deadpan delivery along with twisted TV holiday special spoofs like The Night the Reindeer Died. In honor of Bill Murray breathing new life into the Dickens classic so we have one watchable version this holiday season, here are 10 facts you might not know about Scrooged…
1. Carol Kane has a serious grip. When Carol Kane grabbed Bill Murray’s lip, she did so with such force that it actually injured him, tearing his lip and halting production for a few days.
2. Bill Murray references a previous role. At the end of the film when everyone is singing “Put a little love in your hear,” Frank yells out “Feed me, Seymour.” This is a reference to the giant man-eating plant in one of Billy Murray’s previous films, Little Shop of Horrors.
3. One movie, four Murrays. Scrooged is packed with Murrays as all three of Bill Murray’s brothers appear in the movie. John Murray plays on-screen brother James, Brian Doyle-Murray plays the temperamental father, and Joel Murray plays a party guest.
4. The street carolers were made up of musical legends. The street carolers that Frank chastises were led by Late Show band leader Paul Schaffer and consisted of jazz greats Miles Davis, Larry Carlton, and David Sanborn.
5. Sam Kinison was considered for the role of the Ghost of Christmas Past. The part eventually went to actor David Johansen who was friends with Billy Murray. Sam was also frustrated that his rival Bobcat Goldthwait landed a role in the movie and voiced his opinion on the matter with Howard Stern.