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How Long Did the Film “Planes, Trains and Automobiles” Originally Run?

John Hughes was widely known for his coming-of-age teen comedies with honest depictions of suburban teenage life. He was quite fond of Molly Ringwald that most of his movies featured characters she played really well. But have you heard about his film Planes, Trains, and Automobiles? 

The original version of the movie Planes, Trains, and Automobiles was 3.5 hours. It was cut to 1.5 hours, removing characters and subplots. This was because of improvs between Steve Martin and John Candy.

Planes, Trains, and Automobiles

Planes, Trains, and Automobiles is a comedy film starring Steve Martin and John Candy, directed by John Hughes. It was released on November 25 and earned $49 million worldwide. The story centers around an unlikely friendship and misadventures of marketing executive Neal Page, played by Martin, and shower curtain ring salesman Del Griffith, played by Candy. (Source: IMDb)

The duo faced many challenges on their quest to get home in time for Thanksgiving. The movie is classified as a buddy comedy, where two mismatched people suffer all sorts of bizarre misfortunes.

The movie starts in New York, where Martin is excitedly hurrying to the airport to get home to his family in Chicago. The flight was rerouted due to bad weather. Then he meets Candy, and they decide to try their luck with different modes of transportation, hence the title Planes, Trains, and Automobiles.

Their flight was rerouted to Wichita, Kansas, and the duo was forced to share a motel room with one queen-sized bed. They then set off to take a train and rent a car, which Candy accidentally sets on fire.

Martin’s character grew a strong resentment of Candy’s, as Candy was a loud and obnoxious person but continued to tag along so that he could get home before the turkey was served. Ultimately, the unlikely buddies reach Chicago and part ways, and Martin realizes Candy’s loneliness. (Source: Reel Views)

The film is one hour and 33 minutes long, but its uncut version ran for three and a half hours. The original script was 145 pages and contained many other characters and subplots that were lost in the cut.

The film did not show subplots, such as Martin’s wife suspects that he was having an affair with the Del character he’s traveling with. Another subplot that did not survive the cut was the story of the thief that stole Martin’s money. And perhaps the most critical subplot that didn’t make the cut was the explanation of why Candy’s character’s attachment to Martin’s character was so special. (Source: AV Club)

John Hughes’ Movies

John Hughes was an American film director, producer, and screenwriter. Hughes was known for his earlier films focusing on teen, coming-of-age plots, where he had a talent of depicting fairly realistic adolescent characters during his time. (Source: IMDb)

Here are some of the best movies credited to Hughes:

  • Miracle on 34th Street (1994)
  • The Home Alone Series
  • Some Kind of Wonderful (1987)
  • Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986)
  • Pretty in Pink (1986)
  • The Breakfast Club (1985)
  • Sixteen Candles (1984)
  • National Lampoon’s Vacation (1983)

(Source: Cinelinx)

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