Watch It! (SPECIAL EDITION): Read It! The Real Ferris Bueller

13 08 2009

ferrisThe film world is still reeling from the death of John Hughes, the man who gave us such classics as Sixteen Candles, The Breakfast Club, Planes, Trains and Automobiles, and arguably his best, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. The movie has been referenced in thousands of other mediums, be it Matthew Broderick’s incredible lip-synching performance of “Twist and Shout”, or Ben Stein saying, “Bueller? Bueller?”, the movie has had a huge impact on pop culture. All that said, it now appears that the inspiration for Ferris Bueller has stepped forward: Edward McNally. According to McNally, a childhood friend of Hughes, he has long been rumored to be the person on whom Ferris Bueller was based.

As a special to the Washington Post, McNally wrote an article about his experience with Hughes and the film, and it is simply a fun read. Check out an excerpt after the jump as well as a link to the article.

Movie director John Hughes and I grew up on the same street in our home town of Northbrook, Ill. We both graduated from Glenbrook North, the high school where he filmed scenes from “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” and “The Breakfast Club,” where his mom worked and two sets of our sisters were classmates. Because for years I was relentlessly pursued by a remarkably humorless Glenbrook dean about attendance, pranks and off-campus excursions — and because my best friend was in fact named Buehler — I’ve spent an inordinate amount of my life being unfairly accused of serving among the inspirations for Ferris Bueller.


That said, I’ll admit that Ferris-ian high jinks were the everyday stuff of our boyhood lives. Ferris clocked in at nine absences his final high school semester. My own was a breathtaking 27. That might explain the dean’s pursuit. The key was, from the time I entered high school, all sick notes from our mom were actually penned by our sister Sheila. Even the real ones.

A Mirror Up To the Original Ferris Bueller

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