Rick Moranis is a Canadian-American entertain who rose to prominence through a Canadian sketch comedy show called Second City Television in the 1980s before he started appearing in Hollywood movies. In 1997, Moranis went on a long hiatus so as to focus his attention on his children as a widowed father, though he has appeared in a small number of films since that time.
Here are the top five movie roles of Rick Moranis’s career:
Strange Brew was a Canadian comedy movie that starred two characters from Second City Television, who were played by Moranis and Dave Thomas. It saw the pair attempting to prevent a villainous brewmeister from mind-controlling the world by selling a beer that would render its drinkers docile but also cause them to attack those around them when they heard certain musical tones, which was every bit as ridiculous as it sounds but nonetheless entertaining.
Moranis played Louis Tully as well as the Keymaster possessing Louis Tully in Ghostbusters. Later, he reprised the role in Ghostbusters II, where he had a much more prominent position in the plot. It is interesting to note that Moranis playing Louis was a chance occurrence, seeing as how the initial plan was to have John Candy play him as a conservative businessman rather than a geek.
Spaceballs was an affectionate parody of Star Wars, Star Trek, and a number of other famous sci-fi franchises. However, Star Wars is probably the first of those franchises that will come to mind for most people, particularly when they see Moranis’s character, Lord Dark Helmet, who is an obvious reference to Darth Vader. A sequel to Spaceballs has been discussed on more than one occasion, but so far, no one has managed to come up with a plan that can be implemented to a successful conclusion.
Honey, I Shrunk the Kids
When it was released, Honey, I Shrunk the Kids managed to become the most successful live-action Disney movie ever at $222 million, which was a position that it managed to hold onto for five years. In it, Moranis played Wayne Szalinski, the inventor who shrank both his kids and his neighbor’s kids by accident before throwing them out into his backyard with the garbage, thus kicking off the series of events in the movie. Later, Moranis reprised the role for the movie’s two movie sequels but not the TV show.
My Blue Heaven
Funny that he played FBI Agent Barney Coopersmith in this film and he also played Barney Rubble in The Flinstones. For those of you who haven’t seen My Blue Heaven, it’s one of the best comedies of all time and I’m not even remotely joking. Just take my word on this one.
Honorable Mention: The Flintstones and Parenthood
Moranis played Barney Rubble in The Flintstones, where his relationship with his best friend is tested when Fred Flintstone becomes the vice-president of their company through an act of kindness on his part. Although the movie met with mixed reviews from the critics because of its unusually dark and complicated plot for a family movie, The Flintstones nonetheless managed to earn close to $342 million on a $46 million budget, thus making it an enormous success by any standard of measurement. Interestingly, Danny DeVito was the initial choice for Barney, but he suggested Moranis because he felt that he was too gruff to do the character justice.
*We’d put Parenthood higher on this list but it’s tough because he wasn’t in a starring role.
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