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FilmWeek and Chill: How ‘Airplane!’ Made Its Mark On Parody In The 1980s




Screenshot of the event
Screenshot of the event "FilmWeek & Chill: ‘Airplane!’" broadcasted on June 3, 2021.

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The iconic 1980 film “Airplane!” from the ZAZ directing team, Jim Abrahams, David Zucker and Jerry Zucker parodies the plot and characters from the 1957 disaster flick “Zero Hour!” It broke out as a leading example of comedy done right and one of the funniest films of the 80s. It was the ZAZ team’s feature directorial debut. I talked with the directors during our virtual film series, FilmWeek and Chill, along with the film’s stars Robert Hays and Lorna Patterson Lembeck, casting director Joel Thurm and KPCC’s own Tim Cogshell and Christy Lemire. Today on FilmWeek, we bring you a portion of the conversation.

You can watch the entire FilmWeek and Chill event here.

Guests:

Jim Abrahams, co-director of “Airplane!” and member of the directing team Zucker, Abrahams and Zucker (ZAZ)

Tim Cogshell, film critic for KPCC, Alt-Film Guide and CineGods.com; he tweets @CinemaInMind

Robert Hays, actor who played Ted Striker in "Airplane!"

Lorna Lembeck, actress who played Randy the singing stewardess in “Airplane!”

Christy Lemire, film critic for KPCC, RogerEbert.com, and co-host of the “Breakfast All Day” podcast; she tweets @christylemire

Joel Thurm, casting director for "Airplane!"

David Zucker, co-director of “Airplane!” and member of the directing team Zucker, Abrahams and Zucker (ZAZ)

Jerry Zucker, co-director of “Airplane!” and member of the directing team Zucker, Abrahams and Zucker (ZAZ)