Chevy Chase

Chevy Chase

Overview
Cornelius Crane "Chevy" Chase (ˈtʃɛvi; born October 8, 1943) is an American
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 comedian
Comedian
A comedian or comic is a person who seeks to entertain an audience, primarily by making them laugh. This might be through jokes or amusing situations, or acting a fool, as in slapstick, or employing prop comedy...

, writer
Writer
A writer is a person who produces literature, such as novels, short stories, plays, screenplays, poetry, or other literary art. Skilled writers are able to use language to portray ideas and images....

, and television and film actor
Actor
An actor is a person who acts in a dramatic production and who works in film, television, theatre, or radio in that capacity...

, born into a prominent entertainment industry family. Chase worked a plethora of odd jobs before moving into comedy acting with National Lampoon. He quickly became a key cast member in the inaugural season of Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live is a live American late-night television sketch comedy and variety show developed by Lorne Michaels and Dick Ebersol. The show premiered on NBC on October 11, 1975, under the original title of NBC's Saturday Night.The show's sketches often parody contemporary American culture...

, where his Weekend Update
Weekend Update
Weekend Update is a Saturday Night Live sketch that comments on and parodies current events. It is the show's longest running recurring sketch, having been on since the show's first broadcast, and is typically presented in the middle of the show immediately after the first musical performance...

 skit soon became a staple of the show. Chase is also well-known for his portrayal of the character Clark Griswold in four National Lampoon's Vacation
National Lampoon's Vacation
Vacation, sometimes referred as National Lampoon's Vacation, is a 1983 comedy film directed by Harold Ramis and starring Chevy Chase, Beverly D'Angelo, Randy Quaid, Dana Barron and Anthony Michael Hall...

 films, and for his roles in other successful comedies such as Caddyshack
Caddyshack
Caddyshack is a 1980 American comedy film directed by Harold Ramis and written by Brian Doyle-Murray, Ramis, and Douglas Kenney. It stars Chevy Chase, Rodney Dangerfield, Ted Knight, Michael O'Keefe, Cindy Morgan, and Bill Murray...

 (1980), Fletch
Fletch (film)
Fletch is a 1985 comedy film about a wisecracking investigative newspaper reporter, Irwin M. Fletcher , who writes under the name of Jane Doe...

 (1985), and ¡Three Amigos!
¡Three Amigos!
Three Amigos is a 1986 American adventure musical comedy film directed by John Landis and written by Lorne Michaels, Steve Martin, and Randy Newman...

 (1986).
Discussion
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Quotations

"It was my understanding that there would be no math."

From the SNL|Saturday Night Live sketch, Presidential Debate in 1976 (Chase played Gerald Ford).

I'm Chevy Chase - and you're not.

Encyclopedia
Cornelius Crane "Chevy" Chase (ˈtʃɛvi; born October 8, 1943) is an American
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 comedian
Comedian
A comedian or comic is a person who seeks to entertain an audience, primarily by making them laugh. This might be through jokes or amusing situations, or acting a fool, as in slapstick, or employing prop comedy...

, writer
Writer
A writer is a person who produces literature, such as novels, short stories, plays, screenplays, poetry, or other literary art. Skilled writers are able to use language to portray ideas and images....

, and television and film actor
Actor
An actor is a person who acts in a dramatic production and who works in film, television, theatre, or radio in that capacity...

, born into a prominent entertainment industry family. Chase worked a plethora of odd jobs before moving into comedy acting with National Lampoon. He quickly became a key cast member in the inaugural season of Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live is a live American late-night television sketch comedy and variety show developed by Lorne Michaels and Dick Ebersol. The show premiered on NBC on October 11, 1975, under the original title of NBC's Saturday Night.The show's sketches often parody contemporary American culture...

, where his Weekend Update
Weekend Update
Weekend Update is a Saturday Night Live sketch that comments on and parodies current events. It is the show's longest running recurring sketch, having been on since the show's first broadcast, and is typically presented in the middle of the show immediately after the first musical performance...

 skit soon became a staple of the show. Chase is also well-known for his portrayal of the character Clark Griswold in four National Lampoon's Vacation
National Lampoon's Vacation
Vacation, sometimes referred as National Lampoon's Vacation, is a 1983 comedy film directed by Harold Ramis and starring Chevy Chase, Beverly D'Angelo, Randy Quaid, Dana Barron and Anthony Michael Hall...

 films, and for his roles in other successful comedies such as Caddyshack
Caddyshack
Caddyshack is a 1980 American comedy film directed by Harold Ramis and written by Brian Doyle-Murray, Ramis, and Douglas Kenney. It stars Chevy Chase, Rodney Dangerfield, Ted Knight, Michael O'Keefe, Cindy Morgan, and Bill Murray...

 (1980), Fletch
Fletch (film)
Fletch is a 1985 comedy film about a wisecracking investigative newspaper reporter, Irwin M. Fletcher , who writes under the name of Jane Doe...

 (1985), and ¡Three Amigos!
¡Three Amigos!
Three Amigos is a 1986 American adventure musical comedy film directed by John Landis and written by Lorne Michaels, Steve Martin, and Randy Newman...

 (1986). He has hosted the Academy Awards
Academy Awards
An Academy Award, also known as an Oscar, is an accolade bestowed by the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to recognize excellence of professionals in the film industry, including directors, actors, and writers...

 twice (1987 and 1988) and briefly had his own late-night talk show
Talk show
A talk show or chat show is a television program or radio program where one person discuss various topics put forth by a talk show host....

, The Chevy Chase Show
The Chevy Chase Show
The Chevy Chase Show was an American late night talk show hosted by actor, comedian and Saturday Night Live alumnus Chevy Chase that aired in 1993 on Fox...

. Currently, he appears as Pierce Hawthorne on the NBC
NBC
The National Broadcasting Company is an American commercial broadcasting television network and former radio network headquartered in the GE Building in New York City's Rockefeller Center with additional major offices near Los Angeles and in Chicago...

 comedy series Community
Community (TV series)
Community is an American television comedy series created by Dan Harmon that airs on NBC. The series is about a group of students at a community college in the fictional locale of Greendale, Colorado. The series heavily uses meta-humor and pop culture references, often parodying film and television...

.

Family


Chase was born in Lower Manhattan
Lower Manhattan
Lower Manhattan is the southernmost part of the island of Manhattan, the main island and center of business and government of the City of New York...

, New York City
New York City
New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

. His father, Edward Tinsley "Ned" Chase, was a prominent Manhattan book editor and magazine writer. His mother, Cathalene Parker (née
Married and maiden names
A married name is the family name adopted by a person upon marriage. When a person assumes the family name of her spouse, the new name replaces the maiden name....

 Browning), a concert pianist and librettist, was the daughter of Miles Browning
Miles Browning
Miles Rutherford Browning was an officer in the United States Navy in the Atlantic during World War I and in the Pacific during World War II. A pioneer in the development of aircraft carrier combat operations concepts, he is noted for his aggressive aerial warfare tactics as a captain on the ...

, who served a critical role at the Battle of Midway
Battle of Midway
The Battle of Midway is widely regarded as the most important naval battle of the Pacific Campaign of World War II. Between 4 and 7 June 1942, approximately one month after the Battle of the Coral Sea and six months after Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor, the United States Navy decisively defeated...

 in World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

; she was adopted as a child by Cornelius Vanderbilt Crane, heir to Crane Plumbing
Crane Plumbing Corporation
Crane Plumbing Corporation is a Canadian manufacturer of bathroom fixtures, founded in Winnipeg, Manitoba in 1906, and later moved to Montreal, Quebec...

, and took the name Cathalene Crane. As a child, Chase vacationed at Castle Hill, the Cranes' summer estate in Ipswich, Massachusetts
Ipswich, Massachusetts
Ipswich is a coastal town in Essex County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 12,987 at the 2000 census. Home to Willowdale State Forest and Sandy Point State Reservation, Ipswich includes the southern part of Plum Island...

.

Chase's maternal grandmother was an opera
Opera
Opera is an art form in which singers and musicians perform a dramatic work combining text and musical score, usually in a theatrical setting. Opera incorporates many of the elements of spoken theatre, such as acting, scenery, and costumes and sometimes includes dance...

 singer who performed several times at Carnegie Hall
Carnegie Hall
Carnegie Hall is a concert venue in Midtown Manhattan in New York City, United States, located at 881 Seventh Avenue, occupying the east stretch of Seventh Avenue between West 56th Street and West 57th Street, two blocks south of Central Park....

. Chase is a fourteenth-generation New Yorker
New York City
New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

, and was listed in the Social Register
Social Register
Specific to the United States, the Social Register is a directory of names and addresses of prominent American families who form the social elite, . The "Directory" automatically includes the President of the United States and the First Family, and in the past always included the U.S. Senators and...

 at an early age. His mother's ancestors arrived in Manhattan starting in 1624. Among his ancestors are New York City mayors Stephanus Van Cortlandt
Stephanus Van Cortlandt
Stephanus van Cortlandt was the first native-born mayor of New York City, a position which he held from 1677 to 1678 and from 1686 to 1688. He was the patroon of Van Cortlandt Manor and was on the governor's executive council from 1691 to 1700. His brother, Jacobus Van Cortlandt also served as...

 and John Johnstone; John Morin Scott
John Morin Scott
John Morin Scott was a lawyer, military officer, and statesman before, during and after the American Revolution.-Ancestry:...

, General of the New York Militia during the American Revolution
American Revolution
The American Revolution was the political upheaval during the last half of the 18th century in which thirteen colonies in North America joined together to break free from the British Empire, combining to become the United States of America...

; Anne Hutchinson
Anne Hutchinson
Anne Hutchinson was one of the most prominent women in colonial America, noted for her strong religious convictions, and for her stand against the staunch religious orthodoxy of 17th century Massachusetts...

, dissident Puritan
Puritan
The Puritans were a significant grouping of English Protestants in the 16th and 17th centuries. Puritanism in this sense was founded by some Marian exiles from the clergy shortly after the accession of Elizabeth I of England in 1558, as an activist movement within the Church of England...

 preacher
Preacher
Preacher is a term for someone who preaches sermons or gives homilies. A preacher is distinct from a theologian by focusing on the communication rather than the development of doctrine. Others see preaching and theology as being intertwined...

 and healer; and Mayflower
Mayflower
The Mayflower was the ship that transported the English Separatists, better known as the Pilgrims, from a site near the Mayflower Steps in Plymouth, England, to Plymouth, Massachusetts, , in 1620...

 passengers and signers of the Mayflower Compact
Mayflower Compact
The Mayflower Compact was the first governing document of Plymouth Colony. It was written by the colonists, later together known to history as the Pilgrims, who crossed the Atlantic aboard the Mayflower...

, John Howland
John Howland
John Howland was a passenger on the Mayflower. He was an indentured servant who accompanied the separatists, also called the Pilgrims, when they left England to settle in Plymouth, Massachusetts...

 and the Pilgrim colonist leader and spiritual elder of the Plymouth Colony
Plymouth Colony
Plymouth Colony was an English colonial venture in North America from 1620 to 1691. The first settlement of the Plymouth Colony was at New Plymouth, a location previously surveyed and named by Captain John Smith. The settlement, which served as the capital of the colony, is today the modern town...

, William Brewster
William Brewster (Pilgrim)
Elder William Brewster was a Mayflower passenger and a Pilgrim colonist leader and preacher.-Origins:Brewster was probably born at Doncaster, Yorkshire, England, circa 1566/1567, although no birth records have been found, and died at Plymouth, Massachusetts on April 10, 1644 around 9- or 10pm...

. Chase's paternal grandfather was artist/illustrator Edward Leigh Chase
Edward Leigh Chase
Edward Leigh Chase was an American painter and illustrator, and an early member of the Byrdcliffe experiment which gave rise to the artists' colony at Woodstock, New York...

, and his great-uncle was painter/teacher Frank Swift Chase
Frank Swift Chase
Frank Swift Chase was an American Post-Impressionist landscape painter and a founder of the Woodstock Artists Association in Woodstock, New York, the art colony at Nantucket, Massachusetts, and the Sarasota School of Art in Florida....

.

Chase was named for his adoptive grandfather Cornelius. The nickname Chevy was bestowed by his grandmother, derived from the medieval English The Ballad of Chevy Chase
The Ballad of Chevy Chase
There are two extant English ballads known as The Ballad of Chevy Chase, both of which narrate the same story. As ballads existed within oral tradition before being written down, other versions of this once popular song may also have existed....

. As a descendant of the Scottish Clan Douglas
Clan Douglas
Clan Douglas is an ancient Scottish kindred from the Scottish Lowlands taking its name from Douglas, South Lanarkshire, and thence spreading through the Scottish Borderland, Angus, Lothian and beyond. The clan does not currently have a chief, therefore it is considered an armigerous clan.The...

, the name "Chevy" seemed appropriate to her.

Chase's parents divorced when he was four; his father remarried into the Folgers
Folgers
Folgers Coffee is a major brand of coffee in the United States, part of the food and beverage division of The J.M. Smucker Co.-Company history:...

 coffee family, and his mother remarried twice. Both his parents died in 2005. Chase has stated that he grew up in an upper middle class environment and that his maternal grandfather did not bequeath any assets to Chase's mother when he died. Chase has made recent claims that he was abused
Child abuse
Child abuse is the physical, sexual, emotional mistreatment, or neglect of a child. In the United States, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Department of Children And Families define child maltreatment as any act or series of acts of commission or omission by a parent or...

 as a child by his mother and stepfather, John Cederquist.

Schooling and music


He attended at the Stockbridge School
Stockbridge School
Stockbridge School was a "progressive" co-educational boarding school for adolescents near the Interlaken section of Stockbridge, Massachusetts and which operated from 1948 to 1976.-History:...

 in Stockbridge, Massachusetts
Stockbridge, Massachusetts
Stockbridge is a town in Berkshire County in Western Massachusetts. It is part of the Pittsfield, Massachusetts, Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 1,947 at the 2010 census...

, and attended Riverdale Country School
Riverdale Country School
Riverdale Country School is a co-educational, independent, college-preparatory day school in New York City. One of the most competitive private schools in the nation, it is located on two campuses covering more than in the Riverdale section of The Bronx, New York.-History:Founded in 1907 by Dr...

 in The Bronx
The Bronx
The Bronx is the northernmost of the five boroughs of New York City. It is also known as Bronx County, the last of the 62 counties of New York State to be incorporated...

. He then attended Bard College
Bard College
Bard College, founded in 1860 as "St. Stephen's College", is a small four-year liberal arts college located in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York.-Location:...

 in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York
Annandale-on-Hudson, New York
Annandale-on-Hudson is a hamlet in Dutchess County, New York, USA, in the Hudson Valley in the town of Red Hook, across the Hudson River from Kingston....

, where he studied a pre-med curriculum
Pre-medical
Pre-medical is a term used to describe a track an undergraduate student in the United States pursues prior to becoming a medical student...

 and graduated in 1967 with a Bachelor of Arts
Bachelor of Arts
A Bachelor of Arts , from the Latin artium baccalaureus, is a bachelor's degree awarded for an undergraduate course or program in either the liberal arts, the sciences, or both...

 degree in English
English literature
English literature is the literature written in the English language, including literature composed in English by writers not necessarily from England; for example, Robert Burns was Scottish, James Joyce was Irish, Joseph Conrad was Polish, Dylan Thomas was Welsh, Edgar Allan Poe was American, J....

.

Chase did not enter medical school
Medical school
A medical school is a tertiary educational institution—or part of such an institution—that teaches medicine. Degree programs offered at medical schools often include Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine, Bachelor/Doctor of Medicine, Doctor of Philosophy, master's degree, or other post-secondary...

, which meant he would be subject to the military draft. Chase was not drafted; when Chase appeared in January 1989 as the first guest of the just-launched late-night Pat Sajak Show
The Pat Sajak Show
The Pat Sajak Show is an American late-night television talk show which aired on CBS from January 9, 1989 to April 13, 1990.-Cast:The show was hosted by Pat Sajak, best known as host of the game show Wheel of Fortune...

, he said he had convinced his draft board he deserved a 4-F classification by "falsely claiming, among other things, that he had homosexual tendencies."

Chase played drums
Drum kit
A drum kit is a collection of drums, cymbals and often other percussion instruments, such as cowbells, wood blocks, triangles, chimes, or tambourines, arranged for convenient playing by a single person ....

 with the college band The Leather Canary, headed by school friends Walter Becker
Walter Becker
Walter Carl Becker is an American musician, songwriter and record producer. He is best known as the co-founder, guitarist, bassist and a co-writer of Steely Dan.-Career:...

 and Donald Fagen
Donald Fagen
Donald Jay Fagen is an American musician and songwriter, best known as the co-founder, lead singer, and the principal songwriter of the rock band Steely Dan ....

. Chase has called the group "a bad jazz
Jazz
Jazz is a musical style that originated at the beginning of the 20th century in African American communities in the Southern United States. It was born out of a mix of African and European music traditions. From its early development until the present, jazz has incorporated music from 19th and 20th...

 band"; Becker and Fagen later founded the successful group Steely Dan
Steely Dan
Steely Dan is an American rock band; its core members are Donald Fagen and Walter Becker. The band's popularity peaked in the late 1970s, with the release of seven albums blending elements of jazz, rock, funk, R&B, and pop...

. Chase is gifted with absolute pitch
Absolute pitch
Absolute pitch , widely referred to as perfect pitch, is the ability of a person to identify or re-create a given musical note without the benefit of an external reference.-Definition:...

. He played drums and keyboards
Keyboard instrument
A keyboard instrument is a musical instrument which is played using a musical keyboard. The most common of these is the piano. Other widely used keyboard instruments include organs of various types as well as other mechanical, electromechanical and electronic instruments...

 for a rock
Rock music
Rock music is a genre of popular music that developed during and after the 1960s, particularly in the United Kingdom and the United States. It has its roots in 1940s and 1950s rock and roll, itself heavily influenced by rhythm and blues and country music...

 band called Chamaeleon Church, which recorded one album for MGM Records
MGM Records
MGM Records was a record label started by the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer film studio in 1946, for the purpose of releasing soundtrack albums of their musical films. Later it became a pop label, lasting into the 1970s...

 before disbanding in 1969. Before becoming famous as a writer, actor and comedian, Chase worked in many odd jobs including as a cab driver, truck driver
Truck driver
A truck driver , is a person who earns a living as the driver of a truck, usually a semi truck, box truck, or dump truck.Truck drivers provide an essential service to...

, motorcycle
Motorcycle
A motorcycle is a single-track, two-wheeled motor vehicle. Motorcycles vary considerably depending on the task for which they are designed, such as long distance travel, navigating congested urban traffic, cruising, sport and racing, or off-road conditions.Motorcycles are one of the most...

 messenger, construction worker
Construction worker
A construction worker or builder is a professional, tradesman, or labourer who directly participates in the physical construction of infrastructure.-Construction trades:...

, waiter
Waiter
Waiting staff, wait staff, or waitstaff are those who work at a restaurant or a bar attending customers — supplying them with food and drink as requested. Traditionally, a male waiting tables is called a "waiter" and a female a "waitress" with the gender-neutral version being a "server"...

, busboy
Busboy
Busser, busboy and busgirl are terms used in the United States for someone who works in the restaurant and catering industry clearing tables, taking dirty dishes to the dishwasher, setting tables and otherwise assisting the waiting staff....

, fruit picker, produce
Produce
Produce is a generalized term for a group of farm-produced goods and, not limited to fruits and vegetables . More specifically, the term "produce" often implies that the products are fresh and generally in the same state as where they were harvested. In supermarkets the term is also used to refer...

 manager of a supermarket
Supermarket
A supermarket, a form of grocery store, is a self-service store offering a wide variety of food and household merchandise, organized into departments...

, audio engineer, salesman in a wine
Wine
Wine is an alcoholic beverage, made of fermented fruit juice, usually from grapes. The natural chemical balance of grapes lets them ferment without the addition of sugars, acids, enzymes, or other nutrients. Grape wine is produced by fermenting crushed grapes using various types of yeast. Yeast...

 store, and a theater usher.

Early career


Chase was a member of an early underground comedy ensemble called Channel One which he co-founded in 1967. He also wrote a one-page spoof on Mission: Impossible
Mission: Impossible
Mission: Impossible is an American television series which was created and initially produced by Bruce Geller. It chronicled the missions of a team of secret American government agents known as the Impossible Missions Force . The leader of the team was Jim Phelps, played by Peter Graves, except in...

 for Mad Magazine in 1970 and was a writer for the short-lived Smothers Brothers
Smothers Brothers
The Smothers Brothers are Thomas and Richard , American singers, musicians, comedians and folk heroes. The brothers' trademark act was performing folk songs , which usually led to arguments between the siblings...

 TV show comeback in the early 1970s. Chase made the move to comedy as a full-time career by 1973, when he became a cast member of The National Lampoon Radio Hour, a syndicated satirical radio series. The Lampoon Radio Hour also featured John Belushi
John Belushi
John Adam Belushi was an American comedian, actor, and musician, best known as one of the original cast members of the NBC sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live, The Star of the Films National Lampoon's Animal House and the The Blues Brothers and for fronting the American blues and soul...

, Gilda Radner
Gilda Radner
Gilda Susan Radner was an American comedian and actress, best known as one of the original cast members of the NBC sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live, for which she won an Emmy Award in 1978.-Early life:...

, Bill Murray
Bill Murray
William James "Bill" Murray is an American actor and comedian. He first gained national exposure on Saturday Night Live in which he earned an Emmy Award and later went on to star in a number of critically and commercially successful comedic films, including Caddyshack , Ghostbusters , and...

, and Brian Doyle-Murray
Brian Doyle-Murray
Brian Doyle-Murray is an American comedian, screenwriter, actor and voice artist. He is the older brother of actor/comedian Bill Murray and has acted together with him in several films, including Caddyshack, Scrooged, Ghostbusters II, The Razor's Edge and Groundhog Day...

, all of whom later became "Not-Ready-For-Prime Time Players" on NBC Saturday Night (later retitled NBC's Saturday Night and finally Saturday Night Live). Chase and Belushi also appeared in National Lampoon's off-Broadway
Off-Broadway
Off-Broadway theater is a term for a professional venue in New York City with a seating capacity between 100 and 499, and for a specific production of a play, musical or revue that appears in such a venue, and which adheres to related trade union and other contracts...

 revue Lemmings
National Lampoon's Lemmings
National Lampoon's Lemmings, a spinoff of the humor magazine National Lampoon, was a 1973 stage show which helped launch the performing careers of John Belushi, Christopher Guest, and Chevy Chase. The show was co-written and co-directed by a number of people including Sean Kelly...

, a sketch and musical send-up of popular youth culture (in which Chase also played the drums during the musical numbers). He appeared in the theatrical release The Groove Tube
The Groove Tube
The Groove Tube , written and produced by Ken Shapiro, was a low-budget comedy film. It satirized television and the counterculture of the early 1970s. The film was originally produced to be shown at the Channel One Theater on East 60th St...

 which was directed by another co-founder of Channel One, Ken Shapiro, and which featured several Channel One sketches.

Saturday Night Live


Chase was one of the original cast members of Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live is a live American late-night television sketch comedy and variety show developed by Lorne Michaels and Dick Ebersol. The show premiered on NBC on October 11, 1975, under the original title of NBC's Saturday Night.The show's sketches often parody contemporary American culture...

 (SNL), NBC
NBC
The National Broadcasting Company is an American commercial broadcasting television network and former radio network headquartered in the GE Building in New York City's Rockefeller Center with additional major offices near Los Angeles and in Chicago...

's late-night comedy television show, beginning in October, 1975. During the full first season, he introduced every show except one by saying, "Live from New York, it's Saturday Night!
Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live is a live American late-night television sketch comedy and variety show developed by Lorne Michaels and Dick Ebersol. The show premiered on NBC on October 11, 1975, under the original title of NBC's Saturday Night.The show's sketches often parody contemporary American culture...

" The remark was often preceded by a pratfall, known as "The Fall of the Week." Chase has since become known as a genius of physical comedy
Physical comedy
Physical comedy, also known as slapstick, is a comedic performance relying mostly on the use of the body to convey humour.Physical comedy, whether conveyed by a pratfall , a silly face, or the action of walking into walls, is a common and rarely subtle form of comedy...

. In one comedy sketch
Sketch comedy
A sketch comedy consists of a series of short comedy scenes or vignettes, called "sketches," commonly between one and ten minutes long. Such sketches are performed by a group of comic actors or comedians, either on stage or through an audio and/or visual medium such as broadcasting...

, he mimicked a real-life incident in which President Gerald Ford
Gerald Ford
Gerald Rudolph "Jerry" Ford, Jr. was the 38th President of the United States, serving from 1974 to 1977, and the 40th Vice President of the United States serving from 1973 to 1974...

 accidentally tripped while disembarking from Air Force One
Air Force One
Air Force One is the official air traffic control call sign of any United States Air Force aircraft carrying the President of the United States. In common parlance the term refers to those Air Force aircraft whose primary mission is to transport the president; however, any U.S. Air Force aircraft...

 in Salzburg
Salzburg
-Population development:In 1935, the population significantly increased when Salzburg absorbed adjacent municipalities. After World War II, numerous refugees found a new home in the city. New residential space was created for American soldiers of the postwar Occupation, and could be used for...

, Austria
Austria
Austria , officially the Republic of Austria , is a landlocked country of roughly 8.4 million people in Central Europe. It is bordered by the Czech Republic and Germany to the north, Slovakia and Hungary to the east, Slovenia and Italy to the south, and Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the...

. This portrayal of President Ford as a bumbling klutz became a favorite device of Chase and helped form the popular concept of Ford as being a clumsy man. In later years, Chase met and became friendly with President Ford. Chase's physical stunts led to at least one self-injury. During a skit in the second season of SNL, the comedian was injured when he fell on an unpadded podium and bruised a testicle
Testicle
The testicle is the male gonad in animals. Like the ovaries to which they are homologous, testes are components of both the reproductive system and the endocrine system...

. This injury forced him to broadcast two of the show's segments live from his hospital bed.

Chase was the original anchor for the Weekend Update
Weekend Update
Weekend Update is a Saturday Night Live sketch that comments on and parodies current events. It is the show's longest running recurring sketch, having been on since the show's first broadcast, and is typically presented in the middle of the show immediately after the first musical performance...

 segment of SNL, and his catchphrase introduction—"I'm Chevy Chase... and you're not"—became well known. His trademark conclusion—"Good night, and have a pleasant tomorrow"—was later resurrected by Tina Fey
Tina Fey
Elizabeth Stamatina "Tina" Fey is an American actress, comedian, writer and producer, known for her work on the NBC sketch comedy series Saturday Night Live , the NBC comedy series 30 Rock, and films such as Mean Girls and Baby Mama .Fey first broke into comedy as a featured player in the...

. Chase also wrote comedy material for Weekend Update. For example, he wrote and performed "The News For The Hard Of Hearing." In this skit, Chase would read the top story of the day, aided by Garrett Morris
Garrett Morris
Garrett Gonzalez Morris is an American comedian and actor from New Orleans. He was part of the original cast of the sketch comedy program Saturday Night Live, appearing from 1975 to 1980.-Early life and career:...

, who would repeat the story by loudly shouting it. Chase claimed that his version of Weekend Update would later be the inspiration for other mock-news shows such as The Daily Show
The Daily Show
The Daily Show , is an American late night satirical television program airing each Monday through Thursday on Comedy Central. The half-hour long show premiered on July 21, 1996, and was hosted by Craig Kilborn until December 1998...

 and The Colbert Report.
(Weekend Update was later revived as a segment on The Chevy Chase Show
The Chevy Chase Show
The Chevy Chase Show was an American late night talk show hosted by actor, comedian and Saturday Night Live alumnus Chevy Chase that aired in 1993 on Fox...

, a short-lived late-night talk-show produced by Chase and broadcast by Fox Broadcasting Company
Fox Broadcasting Company
Fox Broadcasting Company, commonly referred to as Fox Network or simply Fox , is an American commercial broadcasting television network owned by Fox Entertainment Group, part of Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation. Launched on October 9, 1986, Fox was the highest-rated broadcast network in the...

.)

Chase also performed in other skits on SNL, including a recurring gag as a Landshark. His racially-charged "word association" skit opposite Richard Pryor
Richard Pryor
Richard Franklin Lennox Thomas Pryor was an American stand-up comedian, actor, social critic, writer and MC. Pryor was known for uncompromising examinations of racism and topical contemporary issues, which employed colorful vulgarities, and profanity, as well as racial epithets...

 from SNL's first season is frequently cited by television critics as one of the funniest (and most daring) skits in the show's history.
Chase became the first breakout star of SNL. He was committed contractually to Saturday Night Live for only one year as a writer, not an SNL cast member. He had signed a one year writing contract
Contract
A contract is an agreement entered into by two parties or more with the intention of creating a legal obligation, which may have elements in writing. Contracts can be made orally. The remedy for breach of contract can be "damages" or compensation of money. In equity, the remedy can be specific...

 and became a cast member during rehearsals just before the show's premiere
Premiere
A premiere is generally "a first performance". This can refer to plays, films, television programs, operas, symphonies, ballets and so on. Premieres for theatrical, musical and other cultural presentations can become extravagant affairs, attracting large numbers of socialites and much media...

. Nonetheless, he received two Emmy Awards and a Golden Globe Award
Golden Globe Award
The Golden Globe Award is an accolade bestowed by the 93 members of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association recognizing excellence in film and television, both domestic and foreign...

 for his comedy writing and live comic acting.

In a 1975 New York
New York (magazine)
New York is a weekly magazine principally concerned with the life, culture, politics, and style of New York City. Founded by Milton Glaser and Clay Felker in 1968 as a competitor to The New Yorker, it was brasher and less polite than that magazine, and established itself as a cradle of New...

 magazine cover story which called him "The funniest man in America", NBC executives referred to Chase as "The first real potential successor to Johnny Carson
Johnny Carson
John William "Johnny" Carson was an American television host and comedian, known as host of The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson for 30 years . Carson received six Emmy Awards including the Governor Award and a 1985 Peabody Award; he was inducted into the Television Academy Hall of Fame in 1987...

" and claimed he would begin guest-hosting The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson
The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson
The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson is a talk show hosted by Johnny Carson under the Tonight Show franchise from 1962 to 1992. It originally aired during late-night....

 within six months of the article. Chase actually never did guest host the Tonight Show during his early peak years of success, and in fact did not even appear on the program until 1978, when he was promoting a prime time special for NBC. Carson later said of Chase after guest-hosting the Tonight Show; "He couldn't ad lib a fart after a baked bean dinner".

Chase acknowledged Ernie Kovacs
Ernie Kovacs
Ernie Kovacs was a Hungarian American comedian and actor.Kovacs' uninhibited, often ad-libbed, and visually experimental comedic style came to influence numerous television comedy programs for years after his death in an automobile accident...

' influence on his work in Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live is a live American late-night television sketch comedy and variety show developed by Lorne Michaels and Dick Ebersol. The show premiered on NBC on October 11, 1975, under the original title of NBC's Saturday Night.The show's sketches often parody contemporary American culture...

, and he thanked Kovacs during his acceptance speech for his Emmy award
Award
An award is something given to a person or a group of people to recognize excellence in a certain field; a certificate of excellence. Awards are often signifiedby trophies, titles, certificates, commemorative plaques, medals, badges, pins, or ribbons...

 for SNL. In addition, Chase spoke of Kovacs' influence on his work in an appearance in the 1982 documentary
Documentary
A documentary is a creative work of non-fiction, including:* Documentary film, including television* Radio documentary* Documentary photographyRelated terms include:...

 called Ernie Kovacs: Television's Original Genius.

Leaving SNL


Chase was the first member of the original SNL cast to leave the show in 1976. After leaving SNL, Chase moved to Los Angeles
Los Angeles, California
Los Angeles , with a population at the 2010 United States Census of 3,792,621, is the most populous city in California, USA and the second most populous in the United States, after New York City. It has an area of , and is located in Southern California...

 and married his girlfriend, Jacqueline Carlin. Chase made a few cameo appearances as the second season wound down; he was eventually replaced by Bill Murray
Bill Murray
William James "Bill" Murray is an American actor and comedian. He first gained national exposure on Saturday Night Live in which he earned an Emmy Award and later went on to star in a number of critically and commercially successful comedic films, including Caddyshack , Ghostbusters , and...

.

Chase hosted SNL eight times after he left, most recently in 1997. He appeared on the show's twenty-fifth anniversary special in 1999 and was interviewed for a 2005 NBC special on SNLs first five years. He also made four later cameo appearances: a Caddyshack skit featuring Bill Murray, a 1997 episode with guest host Chris Farley
Chris Farley
Christopher Crosby "Chris" Farley was an American comedian and actor. Farley was a member of Chicago's Second City Theatre and cast member of the NBC sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live from 1990 to 1995....

, as the Landshark in Weekend Update in 2001 episode, and again on Weekend Update in 2007.

Film


Chase's early film roles included Tunnel Vision
Tunnel Vision (film)
Tunnel Vision is 1976 comedy anthology film featuring Roger Bowen, Chevy Chase, John Candy, Howard Hesseman, Joe Flaherty, Laraine Newman, Betty Thomas, Phil Proctor, Al Franken, Ron Silver, Tom Davis, Michael Overly. It was directed by Neal Israel and Bradley R...

, Foul Play
Foul Play
Foul Play is a 1978 American comic mystery/thriller film written and directed by Colin Higgins. In it, a recently divorced librarian is drawn into a mystery when a stranger hides a roll of film in a pack of cigarettes and gives it to her for safekeeping....

, and Oh Heavenly Dog
Oh Heavenly Dog
Oh! Heavenly Dog is a 1980 comedy film written by Rod Browning. The film stars Benjean, billed here as Benji , Chevy Chase, Jane Seymour, and Omar Sharif...

. The role of Eric 'Otter' Stratton in National Lampoon's Animal House
National Lampoon's Animal House
National Lampoon's Animal House is a 1978 American comedy film directed by John Landis. The film was a direct spin-off of National Lampoon magazine...

 was originally written with Chase in mind, but he turned the role down to work on Foul Play. The role went to Tim Matheson
Tim Matheson
Tim Matheson is an American actor, director and producer. He is perhaps best known for his portrayal of the smooth-talking Eric 'Otter' Stratton in the 1978 comedy National Lampoon's Animal House and has had a variety of other well-known roles, including providing the voice of the lead character...

 instead. Chase said in an interview that he chose to do Foul Play so he could do "real acting" for the first time in his career instead of just doing "schtick". Chase followed Foul Play with the successful Harold Ramis
Harold Ramis
Harold Allen Ramis is an American actor, director, and writer, specializing in comedy. His best-known film acting roles are as Egon Spengler in Ghostbusters and Russell Ziskey in Stripes , both of which he also co-wrote...

 comedy Caddyshack
Caddyshack
Caddyshack is a 1980 American comedy film directed by Harold Ramis and written by Brian Doyle-Murray, Ramis, and Douglas Kenney. It stars Chevy Chase, Rodney Dangerfield, Ted Knight, Michael O'Keefe, Cindy Morgan, and Bill Murray...

, in 1980. That same year, he also starred with Goldie Hawn
Goldie Hawn
Goldie Jeanne Hawn is an American actress, film director, producer, and occasional singer. Hawn is known for her roles in Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In, Private Benjamin, Foul Play, Overboard, Bird on a Wire, Death Becomes Her, The First Wives Club, and Cactus Flower, for which she won the 1969...

 in Neil Simon
Neil Simon
Neil Simon is an American playwright and screenwriter. He has written numerous Broadway plays, including Brighton Beach Memoirs, Biloxi Blues, and The Odd Couple. He won the 1991 Pulitzer Prize for Drama for his play Lost In Yonkers. He has written the screenplays for several of his plays that...

's Seems Like Old Times
Seems Like Old Times (film)
Seems Like Old Times is a 1980 comedy film starring Chevy Chase, Goldie Hawn, and Charles Grodin, directed by Jay Sandrich, with Neil Simon as screenwriter....

 and released a self-titled record album, co-produced by Chase and Tom Scott, with novelty and cover versions of songs by Randy Newman
Randy Newman
Randall Stuart "Randy" Newman is an American singer-songwriter, arranger, composer, and pianist who is known for his mordant pop songs and for film scores....

, Barry White
Barry White
Barry White, born Barry Eugene Carter , was an American composer and singer-songwriter.A five-time Grammy Award-winner known for his distinctive bass voice and romantic image, White's greatest success came in the 1970s as a solo singer and with the Love Unlimited Orchestra, crafting many enduring...

, Bob Marley
Bob Marley
Robert Nesta "Bob" Marley, OM was a Jamaican singer-songwriter and musician. He was the rhythm guitarist and lead singer for the ska, rocksteady and reggae band Bob Marley & The Wailers...

, the Beatles
The Beatles
The Beatles were an English rock band, active throughout the 1960s and one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed acts in the history of popular music. Formed in Liverpool, by 1962 the group consisted of John Lennon , Paul McCartney , George Harrison and Ringo Starr...

, Donna Summer
Donna Summer
LaDonna Adrian Gaines , known by her stage name, Donna Summer, is an American singer/songwriter who gained prominence during the disco era of the 1970s. She has a mezzo-soprano vocal range. Summer is a five-time Grammy winner and was the first artist to have three consecutive double albums reach...

, Tennessee Ernie Ford
Tennessee Ernie Ford
Ernest Jennings Ford , better known as Tennessee Ernie Ford, was an American recording artist and television host who enjoyed success in the country and Western, pop, and gospel musical genres...

, The Troggs
The Troggs
The Troggs are an English rock band from the 1960s that had a number of hits in UK and the US. Their most famous songs include, "Wild Thing", "With a Girl Like You", and "Love Is All Around"...

, and the Sugarhill Gang.


Chase narrowly escaped death by electrocution during the filming of Modern Problems
Modern Problems
Modern Problems is a 1981 comedy film written and directed by Ken Shapiro and starring Chevy Chase, Patti D'Arbanville and Dabney Coleman. The film grossed $26,154,211 in the United States. A DVD release of the film was issued in 2005.-Plot:...

 in 1980. During a sequence in which Chase's character wears 'landing lights' as he dreams that he is an airplane, the current in the lights short-circuited and arced through Chase's arm, back, and neck muscles. The near-death episode caused Chase to experience a period of deep depression, as his marriage to Jacqueline had ended just prior to the start of filming. Chase continued his film career in 1983's National Lampoon's Vacation
National Lampoon's Vacation
Vacation, sometimes referred as National Lampoon's Vacation, is a 1983 comedy film directed by Harold Ramis and starring Chevy Chase, Beverly D'Angelo, Randy Quaid, Dana Barron and Anthony Michael Hall...

, directed by Ramis and written by John Hughes
John Hughes (film director)
John Wilden Hughes, Jr. was an American film director, producer, and screenwriter. He directed and scripted some of the most successful films of the 1980s and 1990s, including National Lampoon's Vacation, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Weird Science, The Breakfast Club, Some Kind of Wonderful, Sixteen...

. He married Jayni Luke in 1983, and in 1985, he starred in Fletch
Fletch (film)
Fletch is a 1985 comedy film about a wisecracking investigative newspaper reporter, Irwin M. Fletcher , who writes under the name of Jane Doe...

, the first of two films based on Gregory Mcdonald
Gregory Mcdonald
Gregory Mcdonald was an American mystery writer best known for his character Irwin Maurice Fletcher, an investigative reporter otherwise known as "Fletch." Fletch was later played by Chevy Chase in the movie of the same name...

's Fletch
Fletch (novel)
Fletch is a 1974 mystery novel by Gregory Mcdonald, the first in a series featuring the character Irwin Maurice Fletcher.-Plot introduction:...

 books. Chase joined SNL veterans Steve Martin
Steve Martin
Stephen Glenn "Steve" Martin is an American actor, comedian, writer, playwright, producer, musician and composer....

 and Martin Short
Martin Short
Martin Hayter Short, CM is a Canadian actor, comedian, writer, singer and producer. He is best-known for his comedy work, particularly on the TV programs SCTV and Saturday Night Live...

 in the Lorne Michaels-produced comedy ¡Three Amigos!
¡Three Amigos!
Three Amigos is a 1986 American adventure musical comedy film directed by John Landis and written by Lorne Michaels, Steve Martin, and Randy Newman...

 in 1986, declaring in an interview that making ¡Three Amigos! was the most fun he had had on a film. The trio hosted SNL that year, the only time the show has had three hosts on one show.

At the height of his career in the late 1980s, Chase earned around $
United States dollar
The United States dollar , also referred to as the American dollar, is the official currency of the United States of America. It is divided into 100 smaller units called cents or pennies....

7 million per film and was a highly visible celebrity. He appeared alongside Paul Simon, one of his best friends, in Simon's 1986 second video for "You Can Call Me Al
You Can Call Me Al
"You Can Call Me Al" is a song by Paul Simon, the first single released from his album Graceland. The song originally charted in the U.S. at No. 44 in October 1986 but it was reissued with greater promotion in March 1987 and hit No. 23. In the UK it peaked at No. 4, while in Sweden and the...

", in which he lip-syncs all of Simon's lyrics. Chase hosted the Academy Awards
Academy Awards
An Academy Award, also known as an Oscar, is an accolade bestowed by the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to recognize excellence of professionals in the film industry, including directors, actors, and writers...

 in 1987 and 1988, signing on to the proceedings in 1987 with the opener, "Good evening, Hollywood phonies!" Chase filmed a sequel to Vacation, 1985's National Lampoon's European Vacation
National Lampoon's European Vacation
European Vacation is a 1985 comedy film. The second film in National Lampoon's Vacation film series, it was directed by Amy Heckerling and stars Chevy Chase and Beverly D'Angelo. Dana Hill and Jason Lively replace Dana Barron and Anthony Michael Hall as Griswold children Audrey and Rusty...

 and then a third, National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation
National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation
Christmas Vacation is a 1989 Christmas comedy film directed by Jeremiah S. Chechik. It is the third installment in National Lampoon's Vacation film series, and was written by John Hughes, based on his short story in National Lampoon Magazine, Christmas ‘59...

, in 1989, which, thanks to its holiday theme, has become one of his more durable films, airing on NBC
NBC
The National Broadcasting Company is an American commercial broadcasting television network and former radio network headquartered in the GE Building in New York City's Rockefeller Center with additional major offices near Los Angeles and in Chicago...

 every December. He played saxophone onstage at Simon's free concert at the Great Lawn in Central Park
Central Park
Central Park is a public park in the center of Manhattan in New York City, United States. The park initially opened in 1857, on of city-owned land. In 1858, Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux won a design competition to improve and expand the park with a plan they entitled the Greensward Plan...

 in the summer of 1991. Later in 1991, he helped record and appeared in the music video "Voices That Care
Voices That Care
"Voices That Care" is a 1991 song written by David Foster, Linda Thompson and Peter Cetera and recorded by a supergroup of popular musicians, entertainers and athletes. The single and supporting documentary music video were intended to help boost the morale of U.S...

" to entertain and support U.S. troops involved in Operation Desert Storm, and supported the International Red Cross.

Later work


Chase's career took a downturn in the early 90s. Chase had three consecutive film flops from his later period: 1991's Razzie award-nominated Nothing But Trouble, 1992's Memoirs of an Invisible Man
Memoirs of an Invisible Man
Memoirs of an Invisible Man is a 1992 film directed by John Carpenter and released by Warner Bros., with many scenes taking place in and around San Francisco. The film is loosely based on a 1987 novel of the same name by H.F. Saint...

, and 1994's Cops and Robbersons
Cops and Robbersons
Cops & Robbersons is a 1994 American crime comedy film directed by Michael Ritchie, and starring Chevy Chase, Jack Palance, Dianne Wiest, and Robert Davi.-Plot:...

. The three releases had a combined gross of $34 million in the U.S. Even the durable Vacation series ground to a halt, following 1997's Vegas Vacation
Vegas Vacation
Vegas Vacation is a 1997 comedy film. It is the fourth film in the original Vacation film series centering around the fictitious Griswold family, following Vacation, European Vacation, and Christmas Vacation. Chevy Chase reprises his starring role as Clark W. Griswold, the patriarch of the family...

 installment. Some of the more recent movies starring Chase (e.g., Vacuums, Rent-a-Husband, Goose!) have not been released in the United States. He returned to mainstream movie-making in 2006, co-starring with Tim Allen
Tim Allen
Tim Allen is an American comedian, actor, voice-over artist, and entertainer, known for his role in the sitcom Home Improvement...

 and Courteney Cox
Courteney Cox
Courteney Bass Cox is an American actress, she is best known for her roles as Monica Geller on the NBC sitcom Friends, Gale Weathers in the horror series Scream and as Jules Cobb in the ABC sitcom Cougar Town, for which she earned her first Golden Globe nomination....

 in the comedy Zoom
Zoom (film)
Zoom is a comedy-superhero film released on August 11, 2006. It is based upon the children's book Amazing Adventures from Zoom's Academy by Jason Lethcoe...

, though it was both a critical and commercial failure.

In September 1993, Chase hosted The Chevy Chase Show
The Chevy Chase Show
The Chevy Chase Show was an American late night talk show hosted by actor, comedian and Saturday Night Live alumnus Chevy Chase that aired in 1993 on Fox...

, a weeknight talk show
Talk show
A talk show or chat show is a television program or radio program where one person discuss various topics put forth by a talk show host....

, for the Fox Broadcasting Company
Fox Broadcasting Company
Fox Broadcasting Company, commonly referred to as Fox Network or simply Fox , is an American commercial broadcasting television network owned by Fox Entertainment Group, part of Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation. Launched on October 9, 1986, Fox was the highest-rated broadcast network in the...

. Though it had high commercial expectations, the show was cancelled by Fox after only six weeks. Chase later appeared in a commercial for Doritos
Doritos
Doritos is a brand of seasoned tortilla chips created by Arch West and produced since 1964 by the American food company Frito-Lay ....

, airing during the Super Bowl
Super Bowl
The Super Bowl is the championship game of the National Football League , the highest level of professional American football in the United States, culminating a season that begins in the late summer of the previous calendar year. The Super Bowl uses Roman numerals to identify each game, rather...

, in which he made humorous reference to the show's failure.

He was roasted by the Friars Club
New York Friars' Club
The Friars Club is a private club in New York City, founded in 1904 and famous for its risqué celebrity roasts. The club's membership is composed mostly of comedians and other celebrities. It is located at 57 East 55th Street between Park and Madison Avenues in a building it calls the Monastery...

 for a Comedy Central
Comedy Central
Comedy Central is an American cable television and satellite television channel that carries comedy programming, both original and syndicated....

 television special in 2002. This roast was noted for being unusually mean, even by the standards of other roasts, and has never re-aired.

Chase was Hasty Pudding's
Hasty Pudding Theatricals
The Hasty Pudding Theatricals, known informally simply as The Pudding, is a theatrical student society at Harvard University, known for its burlesque musicals and for its status as the oldest collegiate theatrical organization in the United States...

 1993 Man Of The Year, and received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame
Hollywood Walk of Fame
The Hollywood Walk of Fame consists of more than 2,400 five-pointed terrazzo and brass stars embedded in the sidewalks along fifteen blocks of Hollywood Boulevard and three blocks of Vine Street in Hollywood, California...

 in 1994. After having starred with Farrah Fawcett
Farrah Fawcett
Farrah Fawcett was an American actress and artist. A multiple Golden Globe and Emmy Award nominee, Fawcett rose to international fame when she first appeared as private investigator Jill Munroe in the first season of the television series Charlie's Angels, in 1976...

 in the relatively successful Man of the House
Man of the House (1995 film)
Man of the House is a 1995 comedy film starring Chevy Chase, Farrah Fawcett and Jonathan Taylor Thomas. Marking Thomas' motion picture debut, this Disney comedy is about a boy who must come to terms with his potential stepfather , a well-meaning lawyer who is unknowingly the subject of a manhunt...

 in 1995, he received Harvard Lampoon
Harvard Lampoon
The Harvard Lampoon is an undergraduate humor publication founded in 1876 at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts.-Overview:Published since 1876, The Harvard Lampoon is the world's longest continually published humor magazine. It is also the second longest-running English-language humor...

's Lifetime Achievement Award in 1996. In 2005, Chase was the keynote speaker at Princeton University
Princeton University
Princeton University is a private research university located in Princeton, New Jersey, United States. The school is one of the eight universities of the Ivy League, and is one of the nine Colonial Colleges founded before the American Revolution....

's Class Day, part of commencement activities.

Return to television


Chase guest-starred as an anti-Semitic
Anti-Semitism
Antisemitism is suspicion of, hatred toward, or discrimination against Jews for reasons connected to their Jewish heritage. According to a 2005 U.S...

 murder suspect in "In Vino Veritas
In Vino Veritas (Law & Order episode)
-Plot summary:A drunken has-been actor, Mitch Caroll, is pulled over and discovered to be covered in blood. During interrogation he rants against Jews and soon becomes a suspect in a Jewish producer's murder...

", the November 3, 2006 episode of Law & Order
Law & Order
Law & Order is an American police procedural and legal drama television series, created by Dick Wolf and part of the Law & Order franchise. It aired on NBC, and in syndication on various cable networks. Law & Order premiered on September 13, 1990, and completed its 20th and final season on May 24,...

. He also guest-starred in the ABC
American Broadcasting Company
The American Broadcasting Company is an American commercial broadcasting television network. Created in 1943 from the former NBC Blue radio network, ABC is owned by The Walt Disney Company and is part of Disney-ABC Television Group. Its first broadcast on television was in 1948...

 drama series Brothers & Sisters in two episodes as a former love interest of Sally Field
Sally Field
Sally Margaret Field is an American actress, singer, producer, director, and screenwriter. In each decade of her career, she has been known for major roles in American TV/film culture, including: in the 1960s, for Gidget or Sister Bertrille on The Flying Nun ; in the 1970s, for Sybil , Smokey and...

's character. Chase appeared in a prominent recurring role as villainous software magnate Ted Roark on the NBC spy-comedy Chuck
Chuck (TV series)
Chuck is an action-comedy/spy-drama television program from the United States created by Josh Schwartz and Chris Fedak. The series is about an "average computer-whiz-next-door" named Chuck, played by Zachary Levi, who receives an encoded e-mail from an old college friend now working for the Central...

. In 2009, Chase and Dan Aykroyd
Dan Aykroyd
Daniel Edward "Dan" Aykroyd, CM is a Canadian comedian, actor, screenwriter, musician, winemaker and ufologist. He was an original cast member of Saturday Night Live, an originator of The Blues Brothers and Ghostbusters and has had a long career as a film actor and screenwriter.-Early...

 provided voices for the Family Guy
Family Guy
Family Guy is an American animated television series created by Seth MacFarlane for the Fox Broadcasting Company. The series centers on the Griffins, a dysfunctional family consisting of parents Peter and Lois; their children Meg, Chris, and Stewie; and their anthropomorphic pet dog Brian...

 episode "Spies Reminiscent of Us
Spies Reminiscent of Us
"Spies Reminiscent of Us" is the third episode of the eighth season of the animated comedy series Family Guy. It originally aired on Fox in the United States on October 11, 2009...

".

Chase is currently starring in the NBC
NBC
The National Broadcasting Company is an American commercial broadcasting television network and former radio network headquartered in the GE Building in New York City's Rockefeller Center with additional major offices near Los Angeles and in Chicago...

 sitcom Community
Community (TV series)
Community is an American television comedy series created by Dan Harmon that airs on NBC. The series is about a group of students at a community college in the fictional locale of Greendale, Colorado. The series heavily uses meta-humor and pop culture references, often parodying film and television...

, as aging moist-towelette tycoon Pierce Hawthorne. In 2010, he appeared in the film Hot Tub Time Machine
Hot Tub Time Machine
Hot Tub Time Machine is a 2010 American science fiction adult comedy film directed by Steve Pink. Four men, all of them bored with their adult lives, travel back to their 1980s teen-hood, courtesy of a time-shifting hot tub. It stars John Cusack, Craig Robinson, Clark Duke, Kellee Stewart, Rob...

, as well as a short online film featuring the Griswold Family, and in the Funny or Die
Funny or Die
Funny or Die is a comedy video website founded by Will Ferrell and Adam McKay's production company, Gary Sanchez Productions with original and user-generated content. Funny or Die contains exclusive material from a number of famous contributors and also has its own Funny or Die Team, which creates...

 original comedy sketch "Presidential Reunion", where he played President Ford alongside other current and former SNL president impersonators.

TV commercials


Chase has appeared in a number of television commercials, including Dollar Rent-a-Car
Dollar-Thrifty Automotive Group
Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group is a holding company for Thrifty Car Rental and Dollar Rent A Car, formed in 1990 by Chrysler and spun off in 1997....

 (1996), Doritos
Doritos
Doritos is a brand of seasoned tortilla chips created by Arch West and produced since 1964 by the American food company Frito-Lay ....

 (1996), History Channel (1999), Aflac
Aflac
Aflac Incorporated is the largest provider of supplemental insurance in the United States, founded in 1955 and based in Columbus, Georgia. In the United States, Aflac underwrites a wide range of insurance policies, but is perhaps more known for its payroll deduction insurance coverage, which pays...

 (2003), Cola Turka
Cola Turka
Cola Turka is a cola brand from Turkish company Ülker that is also sold in Germany, Austria, the Netherlands, Belgium, France, and Denmark.The two television commercials feature American actor Chevy Chase playing a confused American who notices his friend, wearing a stereotypically American cowboy...

 (2003), T-Mobile
T-Mobile
T-Mobile International AG is a German-based holding company for Deutsche Telekom AG's various mobile communications subsidiaries outside Germany. Based in Bonn, Germany, its subsidiaries operate GSM and UMTS-based cellular networks in Europe, the United States, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands...

 (2009) and Chase Manhattan Bank
Chase Manhattan Bank
JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A., doing business as Chase, is a national bank that constitutes the consumer and commercial banking subsidiary of financial services firm JPMorgan Chase. The bank was known as Chase Manhattan Bank until it merged with J.P. Morgan & Co. in 2000...

 (2010).

Personal life


Chase is the father of three girls, Cydney Cathalene (born January 4, 1983), Caley Leigh (born January 19, 1985), and Emily Evelyn (born September 29, 1988). He lives with his wife, Jayni (née Luke), in Bedford, New York
Bedford (town), New York
Bedford is a town in Westchester County, New York, USA. The population was 17,335 at the 2010 census.The Town of Bedford is located in the northeastern part of Westchester County, and contains the three hamlets of Bedford Hills, Bedford Village, and Katonah...

.

Chase is an active environmentalist
Environmentalism
Environmentalism is a broad philosophy, ideology and social movement regarding concerns for environmental conservation and improvement of the health of the environment, particularly as the measure for this health seeks to incorporate the concerns of non-human elements...

 and charity fundraiser. He raised money and campaigned for Bill Clinton
Bill Clinton
William Jefferson "Bill" Clinton is an American politician who served as the 42nd President of the United States from 1993 to 2001. Inaugurated at age 46, he was the third-youngest president. He took office at the end of the Cold War, and was the first president of the baby boomer generation...

 in the 1990s and John Kerry
John Kerry
John Forbes Kerry is the senior United States Senator from Massachusetts, the 10th most senior U.S. Senator and chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. He was the presidential nominee of the Democratic Party in the 2004 presidential election, but lost to former President George W...

 in the 2004 Presidential Election. Following the 2004 elections, Chase criticized President
President of the United States
The President of the United States of America is the head of state and head of government of the United States. The president leads the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces....

 George W. Bush
George W. Bush
George Walker Bush is an American politician who served as the 43rd President of the United States, from 2001 to 2009. Before that, he was the 46th Governor of Texas, having served from 1995 to 2000....

 during a speech at a People For the American Way
People For the American Way
People For the American Way is a progressive advocacy group in the United States. Under U.S. tax code, People For the American Way is organized as a tax-exempt 501 non-profit organization.-Purpose:...

 benefit at the Kennedy Center, referring to the President as an "uneducated, real lying schmuck" and a "dumb fuck". Event organizers and several Bush detractors present at the event distanced themselves from Chase's comments, with Norman Lear
Norman Lear
Norman Milton Lear is an American television writer and producer who produced such 1970s sitcoms as All in the Family, Sanford and Son, One Day at a Time, The Jeffersons, Good Times and Maude...

 remarking, "he'll live with it, I won't."

Film

Year Film Role Notes
1968 Walk... Don't Walk
Walk... Don't Walk
Walk... Don't Walk was a 1968 short film by Rich Allen. It starred Chevy Chase as a pedestrian about to cross the street, when the walk/don't walk light starts changing just before he begins to cross, as if it were playing a practical joke on him. The film lasted for 5 minutes....

Pedestrian Short subject
1974 The Groove Tube
The Groove Tube
The Groove Tube , written and produced by Ken Shapiro, was a low-budget comedy film. It satirized television and the counterculture of the early 1970s. The film was originally produced to be shown at the Channel One Theater on East 60th St...

The Fingers/Geritan/Four Leaf Clover
1976 Tunnel Vision
Tunnel Vision (film)
Tunnel Vision is 1976 comedy anthology film featuring Roger Bowen, Chevy Chase, John Candy, Howard Hesseman, Joe Flaherty, Laraine Newman, Betty Thomas, Phil Proctor, Al Franken, Ron Silver, Tom Davis, Michael Overly. It was directed by Neal Israel and Bradley R...

Himself
1978 Foul Play
Foul Play
Foul Play is a 1978 American comic mystery/thriller film written and directed by Colin Higgins. In it, a recently divorced librarian is drawn into a mystery when a stranger hides a roll of film in a pack of cigarettes and gives it to her for safekeeping....

Tony Carlson
1980 Oh Heavenly Dog
Oh Heavenly Dog
Oh! Heavenly Dog is a 1980 comedy film written by Rod Browning. The film stars Benjean, billed here as Benji , Chevy Chase, Jane Seymour, and Omar Sharif...

Browning
Caddyshack
Caddyshack
Caddyshack is a 1980 American comedy film directed by Harold Ramis and written by Brian Doyle-Murray, Ramis, and Douglas Kenney. It stars Chevy Chase, Rodney Dangerfield, Ted Knight, Michael O'Keefe, Cindy Morgan, and Bill Murray...

Ty Webb
Seems Like Old Times
Seems Like Old Times (film)
Seems Like Old Times is a 1980 comedy film starring Chevy Chase, Goldie Hawn, and Charles Grodin, directed by Jay Sandrich, with Neil Simon as screenwriter....

Nicholas Gardenia
1981 Under the Rainbow
Under the Rainbow
Under the Rainbow is a 1981 comedy film starring Chevy Chase, Carrie Fisher, Eve Arden, and Billy Barty.The plot is loosely based on the gathering of little people in a Hollywood hotel, to audition for roles as Munchkins in the movie The Wizard of Oz...

Bruce Thorpe
Modern Problems
Modern Problems
Modern Problems is a 1981 comedy film written and directed by Ken Shapiro and starring Chevy Chase, Patti D'Arbanville and Dabney Coleman. The film grossed $26,154,211 in the United States. A DVD release of the film was issued in 2005.-Plot:...

Max Fielder
1983 National Lampoon's Vacation
National Lampoon's Vacation
Vacation, sometimes referred as National Lampoon's Vacation, is a 1983 comedy film directed by Harold Ramis and starring Chevy Chase, Beverly D'Angelo, Randy Quaid, Dana Barron and Anthony Michael Hall...

Clark Griswold
Deal of the Century
Deal of the Century
Deal of the Century is a 1983 American comedy film directed by William Friedkin and starring Chevy Chase, Gregory Hines, and Sigourney Weaver.The film follows the adventures of several arms dealers that compete to sell weapons to a South American dictator....

Eddie Muntz
1985 Fletch
Fletch (film)
Fletch is a 1985 comedy film about a wisecracking investigative newspaper reporter, Irwin M. Fletcher , who writes under the name of Jane Doe...

Irwin 'Fletch' Fletcher
National Lampoon's European Vacation
National Lampoon's European Vacation
European Vacation is a 1985 comedy film. The second film in National Lampoon's Vacation film series, it was directed by Amy Heckerling and stars Chevy Chase and Beverly D'Angelo. Dana Hill and Jason Lively replace Dana Barron and Anthony Michael Hall as Griswold children Audrey and Rusty...

Clark Griswold
Spies Like Us
Spies Like Us
Spies Like Us is a 1985 American comedy film directed by John Landis and starring Chevy Chase, Dan Aykroyd, Steve Forrest, and Donna Dixon...

Emmett Fitz-Hume
1986 ¡Three Amigos!
¡Three Amigos!
Three Amigos is a 1986 American adventure musical comedy film directed by John Landis and written by Lorne Michaels, Steve Martin, and Randy Newman...

Dusty Bottoms
1988 The Couch Trip
The Couch Trip
The Couch Trip is a 1988 comedy film directed by Michael Ritchie. It stars Dan Aykroyd, Walter Matthau, Charles Grodin and Donna Dixon.-Plot:...

Condom Father
Funny Farm
Funny Farm (film)
Funny Farm is a 1988 film starring Chevy Chase and Madolyn Smith. The film was adapted from a 1985 comedic novel of the same name by Jay Cronley...

Andy Farmer
Caddyshack II
Caddyshack II
Caddyshack II is the 1988 sequel to the 1980 golf comedy film Caddyshack. The film stars Jackie Mason, Dan Aykroyd, Robert Stack, Dyan Cannon, Chevy Chase, Jonathan Silverman, and Jessica Lundy.-Plot:...

Ty Webb
1989 Fletch Lives
Fletch Lives
Fletch Lives is a 1989 comedy film starring Chevy Chase. It was directed by Michael Ritchie with a screenplay by Leon Capetanos based on the character created by Gregory Mcdonald. Fletch Lives was released by Universal Pictures. It is a sequel to the 1985 film Fletch.- Plot :Chevy Chase once again...

Irwin 'Fletch' Fletcher
National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation
National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation
Christmas Vacation is a 1989 Christmas comedy film directed by Jeremiah S. Chechik. It is the third installment in National Lampoon's Vacation film series, and was written by John Hughes, based on his short story in National Lampoon Magazine, Christmas ‘59...

Clark Griswold
1991 Nothing But Trouble Chris Thorne
1992 Memoirs of an Invisible Man Nick Halloway
Hero
Hero (1992 film)
Hero is a comedy-drama film directed by Stephen Frears and starring Dustin Hoffman, Geena Davis, Andy García, Chevy Chase, and Joan Cusack. It was released in the United States on October 20, 1992.-Plot:...

Deke - Channel 4 News Director
1993 Last Action Hero
Last Action Hero
Last Action Hero is a 1993 American action-comedy-fantasy film directed and produced by John McTiernan. It is a satire of the action genre and its clichés, containing several parodies of action films in the form of films within the film....

Himself Cameo
1994 A Century of Cinema
A Century of Cinema
A Century of Cinema is a 1994 documentary directed by Caroline Thomas about the art of filmmaking , containing numerous interviews with some of the most influential film personalities of the 20th century....

Himself Documentary
Cops and Robbersons
Cops and Robbersons
Cops & Robbersons is a 1994 American crime comedy film directed by Michael Ritchie, and starring Chevy Chase, Jack Palance, Dianne Wiest, and Robert Davi.-Plot:...

Norman Robberson
1995 Man of the House
Man of the House (1995 film)
Man of the House is a 1995 comedy film starring Chevy Chase, Farrah Fawcett and Jonathan Taylor Thomas. Marking Thomas' motion picture debut, this Disney comedy is about a boy who must come to terms with his potential stepfather , a well-meaning lawyer who is unknowingly the subject of a manhunt...

Jack Sturgess
1997 Vegas Vacation
Vegas Vacation
Vegas Vacation is a 1997 comedy film. It is the fourth film in the original Vacation film series centering around the fictitious Griswold family, following Vacation, European Vacation, and Christmas Vacation. Chevy Chase reprises his starring role as Clark W. Griswold, the patriarch of the family...

Clark Griswold
1998 Dirty Work Dr. Farthing
2000 Snow Day Tom Brandston
2002 Vacuums Mr. Punch
Orange County
Orange County (film)
Orange County is a 2002 American comedy film starring Colin Hanks and Jack Black. It was released on January 11, 2002. The movie was distributed by Paramount Pictures and produced by MTV Films and Scott Rudin. The movie was directed by Jake Kasdan and written by Mike White.-Plot:Shaun Brumder is a...

Principal Harbert
2003 Bad Meat Congressman Bernard P. Greely
Bitter Jester
Bitter Jester
Bitter Jester is a documentary starring Maija DiGiorgio, Kenny Simmons, Jody Del Giorno and Heather McConnell. It's a portrait of the comedy world that includes interviews with a multitude of stars including Richard Pryor, Richard Belzer and many others....

Himself Documentary
2004 Rent-a-Husband Paul Parmesan
2005 Ellie Parker
Ellie Parker
Ellie Parker is a 2005 American drama film, written and directed by Scott Coffey. The title character, played by Naomi Watts, is a young woman struggling as an actress in Los Angeles....

Dennis Swartzbaum
2006 Funny Money
Funny Money (2006 film)
Funny Money is a 2006 comedy film directed by Leslie Greif and starring Chevy Chase, Penelope Ann Miller and Armand Assante. It is based on the British play Funny Money by Ray Cooney. It was a co-production between Germany, the United States and Romania...

Henry Perkins
Doogal Train Voice only
Goose on the Loose Congreve Maddox
Zoom
Zoom (film)
Zoom is a comedy-superhero film released on August 11, 2006. It is based upon the children's book Amazing Adventures from Zoom's Academy by Jason Lethcoe...

Dr. Grant
2009 Stay Cool
Stay Cool
Stay Cool is a 2009 American comedy film directed by Ted Smith, and written by Mark and Michael Polish. The film stars Winona Ryder, Mark Polish, Hilary Duff, Sean Astin, Josh Holloway, Jon Cryer, and Chevy Chase.- Plot :...

Principal Marshall
2010 Hot Tub Time Machine
Hot Tub Time Machine
Hot Tub Time Machine is a 2010 American science fiction adult comedy film directed by Steve Pink. Four men, all of them bored with their adult lives, travel back to their 1980s teen-hood, courtesy of a time-shifting hot tub. It stars John Cusack, Craig Robinson, Clark Duke, Kellee Stewart, Rob...

Repairman
Jack and the Beanstalk Antipode
Not Another Not Another Movie Max Storm

Television

Year Show Role Notes
1975–2007 Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live is a live American late-night television sketch comedy and variety show developed by Lorne Michaels and Dick Ebersol. The show premiered on NBC on October 11, 1975, under the original title of NBC's Saturday Night.The show's sketches often parody contemporary American culture...

Various characters 35 episodes
1993 The Chevy Chase Show
The Chevy Chase Show
The Chevy Chase Show was an American late night talk show hosted by actor, comedian and Saturday Night Live alumnus Chevy Chase that aired in 1993 on Fox...

Himself Also writer and producer
2003 Freedom: A History of Us Various characters Five episodes
2004 The Karate Dog
The Karate Dog
The Karate Dog is a 2004 made for TV movie starring Chevy Chase, Simon Rex, Jon Voight, and Jaime Pressly...

Cho-Cho (voice) TV movie
2006 Law & Order
Law & Order
Law & Order is an American police procedural and legal drama television series, created by Dick Wolf and part of the Law & Order franchise. It aired on NBC, and in syndication on various cable networks. Law & Order premiered on September 13, 1990, and completed its 20th and final season on May 24,...

Mitch Carroll Episode "In Vino Veritas"
2007 Family Guy
Family Guy
Family Guy is an American animated television series created by Seth MacFarlane for the Fox Broadcasting Company. The series centers on the Griffins, a dysfunctional family consisting of parents Peter and Lois; their children Meg, Chris, and Stewie; and their anthropomorphic pet dog Brian...

Clark Griswold Episode "Blue Harvest
Blue Harvest
Blue Harvest was a fake working title used to hide the 1982 production of Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi, the third installment of the Star Wars film series...

"
2009 Hjälp!
Hjälp!
Hjälp! is a Swedish situation comedy television series. It revolves around a professional therapist, Jeanette Placzycks, played by Stina Ekblad. She treats several patients in need of urgent help, hence the name of the series...

 (Help!)
Dan Carter Eight episodes
2009 Chuck
Chuck (TV series)
Chuck is an action-comedy/spy-drama television program from the United States created by Josh Schwartz and Chris Fedak. The series is about an "average computer-whiz-next-door" named Chuck, played by Zachary Levi, who receives an encoded e-mail from an old college friend now working for the Central...

Ted Roark Three episodes
2009 Family Guy
Family Guy
Family Guy is an American animated television series created by Seth MacFarlane for the Fox Broadcasting Company. The series centers on the Griffins, a dysfunctional family consisting of parents Peter and Lois; their children Meg, Chris, and Stewie; and their anthropomorphic pet dog Brian...

Himself Episode "Spies Reminiscent of Us
Spies Reminiscent of Us
"Spies Reminiscent of Us" is the third episode of the eighth season of the animated comedy series Family Guy. It originally aired on Fox in the United States on October 11, 2009...

"
2009–present Community
Community (TV series)
Community is an American television comedy series created by Dan Harmon that airs on NBC. The series is about a group of students at a community college in the fictional locale of Greendale, Colorado. The series heavily uses meta-humor and pop culture references, often parodying film and television...

Pierce Hawthorne 55 episodes

Further reading

  • I'm Chevy Chase...and You're Not (The Authorized Biography) by Rena Fruchter. Virgin Books, 2007. ISBN 1-85227-346-1.
  • Who's Who in Comedy by Ronald L. Smith. Pg. 102-103. New York: Facts on File, 1992. ISBN 0-8160-2338-7.
  • Live From New York: An Uncensored History of Saturday Night Live by Tom Shales and James Andrew Miller. Back Bay Books.

External links