15 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Uncle Buck
1. John Candy wasn’t the first choice to star.
Danny DeVito was originally considered for the role of Uncle Buck.
2. Candy appeared in more movies written or directed by John Hughes than any other actor.
Including Uncle Buck, Candy appeared in National Lampoon’s Vacation; Planes, Trains & Automobiles; The Great Outdoors; She’s Having a Baby; Home Alone; and Career Opportunities.
3. A scene in Uncle Buck inspired Home Alone.
Uncle Buck is only the third theatrically released film starring Macaulay Culkin, who shot to stardom a year later thanks to his role in Home Alone—which, like Uncle Buck, was also written and produced John Hughes. The idea for Home Alone first came to Hughes while Culkin was shooting the scene in Uncle Buck where he interrogates Chanice through the mail slot. (Candy also appears in Home Alone, but he and Culkin don’t have any scenes together.)
4. Amy Madigan and Gaby Hoffmann were family in a previous movie.
Madigan, who plays Chanice, and Hoffmann, who plays Maizy, appeared as mother and daughter in the film Field of Dreams, which was released the same year as Uncle Buck.
5. It was shot and released in the same year.
Uncle Buck began filming, was released in theaters, and was released on home video all within 1989.
6. The film was originally supposed to take place in St. Louis.
It was changed to the Chicago area because unusually warm weather in Missouri that year forced the production to move to a more wintry climate.
7. You can visit the Russells’ house—and Buck’s apartment.
The exteriors of the Russells’ house were shot on location at 2602 Lincoln Street in Evanston, Illinois. Buck’s apartment, across the street from Wrigley Field, is located at 3708 N. Sheffield Avenue in Chicago.
8. You might recognize the high school from other John Hughes films.
The high school scenes were shot at New Trier West High School in Winnetka, Illinois, which wasn’t a functioning school at the time of filming. The location was also used in other Hughes films like Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and Sixteen Candles. The elementary school scenes were shot at Romona Elementary School in Wilmette, Illinois.
9. If you look closely, you’ll spot a familiar face.
The classmate sitting next to Maizy in her school scene is actress Anna Chlumsky, who would later star in My Girl with Macaulay Culkin, and who can be currently seen on HBO’s Veep.
10. Buck’s car is a 1977 Mercury Marquis Brougham.
He calls it “The Beast.” Filmmakers used a combination of a gunshot and a firecracker to create its backfiring noise.
11. Pooter-the-Clown is played by character actor Mike Starr.
Among his more recognizable roles are Frankie from Miller’s Crossing, Frenchy from Goodfellas, and Mental from Dumb & Dumber.
12. Uncle Buck’s theme might sound familiar.
It’s a beat from rapper Tone Lōc’s “Wild Thing.”
13. The film spawned two short-lived TV shows of the same name.
The first ran from 1990-1991 and was created without the input of John Hughes or any of the film’s cast. In fact, Hughes didn’t even know the show existed until its producers asked to use exterior footage the director shot for the movie. James Lesure starred in a 2016 version, which was canceled after one season.
14. There was an Indian Uncle Buck remake.
Uncle Bun was released in 1991.
15. You can make Buck’s huge pancakes.
But you’ll need a pretty big mixing bowl. A chef estimated that you’d need 300g of plain flour, 200g of caster sugar, 450ml of milk, 9 medium free range eggs, 100g of melted unsalted butter, and 15g of vegetable oil to make the stack of gigantic pancakes that Buck makes Miles for his birthday.