It amazes me that Chris Farley has been gone for nearly 18 years now. He was one of the greats who would have had many more years of success in the movie business if not for overdosing December 18, 1997. Even now, his movies are still regularly aired on TV and people know and love Chris Farley for the overly enthusiastic and energetic funny man that he was. Even those who were born after his death are familiar with his work and mourn his loss. Below we have 27 Chris Farley facts that you might not have known about the Saturday Night Live superstar that will make you see him in a different light.
1. Chris Crosby Farley graduated from Marquette University with a degree in communication and theater in 1986.
2. Chris Farley’s father owned an oil company in Madison, WI called Scotch Oil Co and Chris’ first job was working with his father when he graduated from college.
3. He was discovered in Chicago while performing at a comedy club by Lorne Michaels, the producer of Saturday Night Live. Shortly afterward, Farley was cast for the 1990-91 season of SNL.
4. One of his many girlfriends was Lorne Michaels’ assistant, Erin Maroney, who became a writer for SNL.
5. Chris Farley was fired from SNL along with co-host Adam Sandler in 1995, one year before his contract ended.
6. He was neighbors with Jerry Springer at the John Hancock Center in Chicago.
7. While working for SNL Farley had smaller acting rolls in 4 movies: Wayne’s World (security guard), Coneheads (Connie’s boyfriend), Wayne’s World 2 (Milton) and Airheads (Officer Wilson).
8. Farley also had a cameo appearance in the sitcom Roseanne where he played a customer at a clothing store.
9. The first film where he was starred in a major role was Tommy Boy.
10. Chris Farley had a bit of a temper. When on the set of Tommy Boy he found out that his best friend David Spade went out with Rob Lowe without inviting him so Farley taunted Spade about their outing and stomped on his hand!
11. Chris Farley had 3 additional starring roles after Tommy Boy which were: Black Sheep, Beverly Hill’s Ninja and Almost Heroes. (Almost Heroes was released after his death.)
12. Chris Farley had three brothers and one sister. His brother Kevin Farley made an appearance in each of his films. Two of his brothers are actors and were in Tommy Boy during the wedding reception.
13. When he was a child, Farley made up the term “Holy Schnikes!” which he uses in Tommy Boy. This phrase was made up because of his mother’s strict no swearing policy.
14. Chris Farley led a very wild lifestyle which resulted in morbid obesity, heavy drinking which he went to rehab for several times, he frequently hired prostitutes and had a history of drug abuse which lead to his death caused by an overdose.
15. At the time of his death, Farley was planning a 3rd movie with David Spade who starred with him in Tommy Boy and Black Sheep.
16. Chris Farley was the original choice for the voice of Shrek and had recorded most of the dialogue. The role went to Mike Myers when Farley died.
17. Shrek uses air quotes in homage to Chris Farley’s character Bennet Brauer on SNL.
18. During his time on SNL he was a part of the pack known as the “Bad Boys of SNL.” Other members were Adam Sandler, Rob Schneider and David Spade.
19. The Bad Boys of SNL were planning to do a movie together called Grown Ups but the movie was put on hold for 10 years. After Farley’s death, his intended part was played by Kevin James.
20. Chris Farley idolized John Belushi who had an eerily similar bio. They both worked on SNL, stared in movies, battled obesity, they had out-of-control lifestyles and died at the age of 33 due to drug overdoses.
21. At the time of his death Farley was 5 feet 8 inches tall and weighed 298 lbs.
22. Chris Farley’s net worth at the time of death was 5 million dollars.
23. He was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame after his death. It is located outside of the Improv Olympic Theater West where he had performed.
24. Chris Farley was the original choice for Jim Carrey’s role in the 1996 film The Cable Guy. Unknown scheduling conflicts caused him to miss out on that opportunity.
25. From 1990-1995 Chris Farley appeared in 100 episodes of Saturday Night Live.
26. The movie Tommy Boy opened at #1 and was commercially his greatest success.
27. Tommy Boy allowed Chris Farley and David Spade to receive the MTV Movie Award for Best On-Screen Duo in 1996.
Rest in peace.