The “Addams Family” has been an iconic part of American culture for over fifty years. A multiple-media franchise, those Addams have been seen in print, numerous television shows, several films and — well, you get the picture. These creepy, kooky family members have earned their way into the hearts of millions of fans.
Recent fans of the series are probably most familiar with the 1991 film “The Addams Family” which rebooted the franchise with an all-new cast. We dug a little and found some of the RAREST fun facts about the film and its franchise.
So before you catch it on Netflix, read on to see 20 updates on the cast of “The Addams Family,” plus a few fun facts!
Starting off our list is actor Christopher Lloyd who played Uncle Fester in the 1991 film and its sequel. He has won several Emmy Awards, particularly for his role in the TV series “Road to Avonlea.” He doesn’t talk much about his personal life (though he has been married four times) and keeps a relatively low public profile. Most of his interviews and public appearances these days center around his involvement in the “Back to the Future” franchise.
The next slide might have prevented Lloyd from participating in the Addams franchise altogether!
A Secret Sale
During the TV series’ film revival, the production company, Orion Pictures, actually sold the rights to the film (unusual since, why would you sell rights to a movie you made and intended to release, right?). Movie giant Paramount pictures bought the distribution rights, but the actors and producers were not informed of the sale until the film was almost done.
Click through to the next slide and you’ll finally find out who or what played Cousin Itt.
Few people realize that Cousin It was played by a real person and was not just a wig propped up in front of the camera. The actor, John Franklin, even co-wrote the 1999 film “Children of the Corn: Isaac’s Return” to honor his beloved character. He married his longtime partner and now husband, David White, in 2008. Franklin teaches English and screenwriting at a high school in California.
Take a guess — where did The Addams Family first appear? Click through to find out!
“The Addams Family” television show and movies were originally based on Charles Addams’ one-strip cartoons that premiered in The New Yorker in 1937. They featured the same characters that later graced TVs and the silver screen, but eventually the film enterprise outgrew the comic strips and the writers had to go off-book and create new stories and plot lines.
While most of the Addams actors are pretty famous, there are a few lesser-known in the films. Where are they now? Click through to read more!
Jimmy Workman, who played Pugsley Addams in two films of the rebooted Addams franchise, has long since stepped out of the spotlight. Not much is known about his current life, except that he mostly works behind the camera these days. He was also recently in the news after filing to seize custody of his younger sister (Modern Family’s Ariel Winter) from his other sister, Shantelle Workman.
You’ll never guess which Addams family member began a career as a model! Click through …
Anjelica Huston is a multi-talented actress, director and memoirist and yes, she began her career as a fashion model. Though she has a career spanning over five decades, many of her fans know her for playing Morticia in “The Addams Family” or for her many appearances in films by director Wes Anderson. She has also authored two memoirs.
While the Addams might seem a bit abnormal, what some psychologists say about them (next slide) might surprise you!
The Ideal Family
Child psychologist Stephen Cox once wrote a column praising the Addams’ as the perfect family. He said “There wasn’t any bickering. There wasn’t the making a fool of the father or the mother. There weren’t sides drawn between the children and the parents. There was all love, and they still managed to be funny.”
So despite how morbid the family appears to be, their dynamic and mutual respect for each other is about as good as it gets.
Did you know that the original director of “The Addams Family” went on to direct some pretty major Hollywood films? He is …
“The Addams Family” movie was the first feature film of director Barry Sonnenfeld, who later went on to direct such films as “Men In Black” and “Get Shorty.” That’s surprising, given the bout of bad luck the young director had to deal with on set. Production was shut down once due to Sonnenfeld fainting on set, and was canceled again for several days so Sonnenfeld could take care of his ailing wife. These weren’t the only strange things to happen on the set, though. Keep reading to learn more!
“A Black Cloud”
Director Barry Sonnenfeld eventually had to serve double duty as the film’s director AND cinematographer. During filming, he had two men walk off the job, so he chose to take on their responsibilities himself. He later told reporters that he felt like there was “a black cloud” hanging over the movie and its production team.
See where another of the film’s stars landed in recent years on the next slide.
Grandmama Addams is certainly staying busy! After playing Grandmama Addams in “Addams Family Values,” she pursued several roles on Broadway, including working in the touring company for “Wicked.” Most recently, she has kept viewers laughing with her portrayal of Lillian, a drug-pushing landlord, on the Netflix original “The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.”
The next star wasn’t so lucky.
Hip hop artist MC Hammer wrote and performed “The Addams Family Groove” which was an important element in the TV series. Unfortunately, though, the song was highly criticized. It was even named “The Worst Song in America” and it was the last song written by MC Hammer that appeared on a Billboard Top 10 list! Unfortunately for Hammer, we all know what happened to his career as the 90s went on.
When Paramount Pictures bought “The Addams Family” movie, they certainly weren’t expecting to have to deal with a major lawsuit! David Levy, who was the producer of the original TV show, alleged that the film borrowed too many of his original ideas without giving him proper credit. He and the company settled out of court.
She was Wednesday Addams during her childhood, but she has taken on plenty of other roles since then, including starring in “Sleepy Hollow” and “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.” She has overcome a personal battle with anorexia, and is an advocate for eating disorder awareness when she’s not busy acting. “The Addams Family” actress on the next slide is just a bit harder to get to know.
Few actresses are as private as Dana Ivey! Hardly anything is known about her personal life, though her impressive resume certainly speaks for itself. She has appeared in “The Help” and “Boardwalk Empire,” in addition to working on the “Great White Way.” She leveraged her role as Margaret Alford in “The Addams Family” to launch into a great career!
We bet you’ll recognize the next Addams Family actress as well.
Acting must run in families! Joan Cusack, who played Debbie Jellinsky on Addams Family Values, has starred alongside her brother, actor John Cusack, in many films. She recently performed in the TV series “Shameless” and has been nominated for several Oscar Awards. She is married to a Chicago attorney and has two sons.
Netherlands native Carel Struycken played Lurch in The Addams Family, and used his impressive seven foot stature to score many roles in science fiction films afterwards. He is married with two children, and works as an actor occasionally, but has largely faded from the public spotlight since the late 90s.
A Childhood Rebellion
The original script for “The Addams Family” included a lot more ambiguity, especially regarding Uncle Fester’s character. So, at the beginning of filming, the cast sent 10-year-old Christina Ricci to make an impassioned plea to the producers to clarify these issues. Apparently, she wasn’t sure why she was being sent to argue with her bosses, but she did it anyway!
Raul Julia, who played Gomez Addams, had a successful career as a stage actor in both the United States and in his native Puerto Rico. He secured several Tony Awards for his work.
Unfortunately, he died in 1994 after a long battle with cancer. Hundreds of thousands of people attended his funeral.
Julia isn’t the only prodigious actor to be approached for a role in the film. You’ll never believe who’s on the next slide.
Almost Uncle Fester
Actor and composer Anthony Hopkins was originally offered the role of Uncle Fester. However, he turned it down because the filming schedule interfered with his spot as Hannibal Lecter in “The Silence of the Lambs.” Though we missed him in “The Addams Family,” we’re sure he doesn’t regret the Oscar he won for playing a demented serial killer!
The next actor probably deserved an Oscar for all she put into her role.
A Plastic Morticia
Morticia Addams has a very exaggerated, almost cartoon-like shape. So, actress Anjelica Huston had to lace up in a metal corset each day to look the part! She also underwent minor plastic surgery for the role. She had gauze eye tucks and face lifts nearly daily during filming. That shows some serious commitment to her work!