"Bluto's right. Psychotic, but absolutely right. We gotta take these bastards. Now we could do it with conventional weapons. But that could take years and cost millions of lives. No, I think we have to go all out. I think that this situation absolutely requires a really futile and stupid gesture be done on somebody's part.' ~Otter
Animal House Trivia
Co-writer Chris Miller based the National Lampoon short stories that gave rise
to the film on his experiences in the Alpha Delta Phi fraternity at
Dartmouth (from which he graduated in 1962).
The movie was set to be filmed at the University of Missouri until the
president of the school read the script and refused permission. It was
filmed at and around the University of Oregon in Eugene instead.
Before Donald Sutherland was brought on board, John Belushi was the
highest-paid actor in the cast at $40,000. Sutherland was so convinced
of the movie's lack of potential, that, when offered a percent of the
gross or a flat fee of $75,000 for his three days' work, he took the
upfront payment. Had he taken the gross percentage he would have been
worth an additional $3-4 million.
John Landis had a budget of only $2.5 million, so to cut costs, the movie
was shot almost entirely on the University of Oregon campus, including
the student court scene and scenes in Dean Wormer's office. The only
exceptions were the road trip scene and the parade, which was filmed in
the nearby town of Cottage Grove, Oregon.
The University of Oregon reluctantly allowed its campus to be used and
gave the crew 30 days to complete filming. This meant that the cast and
crew faced six-day work weeks and completed shooting with only two days to spare.
Film debut of Kevin Bacon and Karen Allen.
Named the #1 comedy on Bravo's "Funniest 100 Comedies."
More money was spent on advertising and promotion for the film than the film itself.
The hole John Belushi makes in the wall with the guitar is the only physical damage to the house the movie-makers made during the entire
shoot. Instead of repairing it, the fraternity placed a frame around the hole with an engraved brass tag around the hole commemorating it.
John Belushi's performance in the cafeteria scene was entirely improvised. When he began piling food on his tray, Director John Landis
urged the camera operator to "stay with him." The infamous "I'm a zit" gag was also improvised, and the reaction from the cast is
completely genuine. The scene in which Bluto smashes a bottle over his head to cheer Flounder up took 18 takes because Stephen Furst kept laughing.
The scene where John Belushi is teaching everyone the "dirty lyrics" of The Kingsmen's 1963 song "Louie Louie"
is based on an actual investigation conducted by the FBI from 1963 to 1965 in which the agency spent more than
2-1/2 years trying to "decode" the song because of the supposed profanity that was "hidden" in the muffled lyrics.
After 2 years and thousands of taxpayer dollars, the agency announced it could find no "obscene" words in the song.
DeWayne Jessie's performance as "Otis Day" was so successful that he legally changed his name to Otis Day
and subsequently toured and recorded with 'Otis Day and the Knights.'