Chevy Chase Then and Now

By / June 23, 2024

Chevy Chase Then

Chevy Chase, was born on October 8, 1943, in New York City to a family with a rich artistic and musical heritage.

His mother, Cathalene Parker, was a concert pianist and librettist who was adopted by her stepfather, Cornelius Vanderbilt Crane, a prominent figure in Chase’s early life. 

His paternal grandfather, Edward Leigh Chase, was an artist and illustrator, while his great-uncle Frank Swift Chase was a respected painter and teacher. 

The influence of these creative relatives helped shape Chase’s appreciation for the arts from a young age.

However, Chase’s childhood was marked by his parents’ divorce when he was just four years old. 

Following the divorce, his mother remarried twice, while his father entered into a marriage with a member of the Folgers coffee family. 

chevy chase young
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This family restructuring introduced Chase to various familial dynamics and backgrounds, influencing his early experiences and perspectives on family life.

Chase’s education took him through a series of institutions as he sought to find his path. 

He graduated from the Stockbridge School in 1962 and began his college career at Haverford College.

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After only one semester, he transferred to Bard College, where he eventually earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English in 1967. 

His academic journey was characterized by a diverse range of interests and experiences, reflecting his curiosity and exploration of different disciplines.

Before achieving fame in the entertainment industry, Chevy Chase navigated a variety of jobs, showcasing his versatility and determination.

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He worked as a cab driver, truck driver, construction worker, waiter, fruit picker, audio engineer, wine salesman, and theater usher. 

These roles not only provided Chase with practical experience but also shaped his work ethic and resilience, laying the groundwork for his future endeavors in comedy and entertainment.

Chevy Chase’s early life was a blend of artistic heritage, familial changes, educational exploration, and diverse work experiences. 

These formative years provided him with a broad foundation upon which he would build his successful career in comedy, film, and television, ultimately becoming a prominent figure in American entertainment.

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Chevy Chase Acting Career

Chevy Chase’s career spans decades and is marked by significant contributions to comedy in television, film, and beyond. 

His journey began in the late 1960s when he co-founded the underground comedy ensemble Channel One, showcasing his early comedic talent and setting the stage for what would become a prolific career.

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His knack for satire and humor was evident in his work, including a notable spoof of “Mission: Impossible” for Mad Magazine in 1970, highlighting his emerging comedic prowess.

By 1973, Chase had fully committed to comedy as his career path, becoming a writer and cast member of “The National Lampoon Radio Hour.” 

This syndicated radio series further solidified his reputation for sharp wit and comedic writing skills.

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chevy chase career
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However, it was his landmark role as one of the original cast members of “Saturday Night Live” (SNL) in 1975 that propelled Chase to national fame.

On SNL, he distinguished himself as the original anchor of the “Weekend Update” segment, where his deadpan delivery and irreverent humor became iconic.

His catchphrase, “I’m Chevy Chase, and you’re not,” became synonymous with his persona on the show.

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Despite leaving SNL after just two seasons in 1976, Chase maintained a significant presence on the show, hosting eight times over the years and returning for various anniversary specials. 

His departure marked a transition into film, where he secured a string of successful roles in the late 1970s and 1980s. 

Notable among these were films like “Foul Play” (1978), “Caddyshack” (1980), and “National Lampoon’s Vacation” (1983), where Chase’s comedic timing and distinctive style endeared him to audiences worldwide.

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During the peak of his career in the late 1980s, Chase commanded substantial salaries, earning around $7 million per film. 

His roles in popular comedies like “Fletch” (1985), “Three Amigos” (1986), and “Christmas Vacation” (1989) solidified his status as a leading comedic actor.

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However, the 1990s brought challenges with several film flops, impacting his box office success and the trajectory of his career.

Despite setbacks in film, Chase remained active in television, making guest appearances and hosting his own talk show, “The Chevy Chase Show,” albeit briefly, in 1993.

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His return to prominence came with his role in the critically acclaimed sitcom “Community” (2009-2012), where he showcased his comedic chops alongside a talented ensemble cast. 

This period also saw Chase appearing in films like “Hot Tub Time Machine” (2010) and “The Last Laugh” (2019), demonstrating his enduring appeal and versatility.

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Throughout his career, Chevy Chase has garnered numerous accolades, including Primetime Emmy Awards for writing and nominations for Golden Globe Awards. 

His contributions to comedy have been recognized with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and other prestigious honors, solidifying his place as a comedic legend. 

As he continues to pursue diverse projects, including upcoming roles like “Zombie Town,” Chevy Chase remains an enduring figure in entertainment, celebrated for his comedic genius and lasting impact on popular culture.

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Chevy Chase Movies

chevy chase movie list
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  • Tunnel Vision (1976)
  • Foul Play (1978)
  • Oh! Heavenly Dog (1980)
  • Caddyshack (1980)
  • Seems Like Old Times (1980)
  • Modern Problems (1981)
  • National Lampoon’s Vacation (1983)
  • Deal of the Century (1983)
  • National Lampoon’s European Vacation (1985)
  • Fletch (1985)
  • Spies Like Us (1985)
  • Three Amigos! (1986)
  • ¡Three Amigos! (1986)
  • National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)
  • Memoirs of an Invisible Man (1992)
  • Cops and Robbersons (1994)
  • Man of the House (1995)
  • Vegas Vacation (1997)
  • Snow Day (2000)
  • Orange County (2002)
  • Funny Money (2006)
  • Hot Tub Time Machine (2010)
  • Not Another Not Another Movie (2011)
  • The Last Movie Star (2017)
  • The Very Excellent Mr. Dundee (2020)
  • Panda vs. Aliens (2021)
  • Zombie Town (2023)
  • Glisten and the Merry Mission (2023)

Chevy Chase Wife and Children

Chevy Chase’s personal life has been marked by multiple marriages and family dynamics. 

His first marriage was to Susan Hewitt, which lasted from February 1973 to February 1976. 

The union was relatively short-lived, but it marked the beginning of Chase’s journey into family life.

Following his divorce from Hewitt, Chevy Chase married Jacqueline Carlin in December 1976.

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This marriage lasted until November 1980. Despite its end, this period was significant for Chase as he navigated his burgeoning career in comedy and film.

In June 1982, Chevy Chase married Jayni Luke, marking his third marriage. 

This relationship has endured over the years, and the couple has three daughters together. 

Their commitment to family life has been a central part of Chase’s later years, providing stability and a sense of fulfillment outside of his career in entertainment.

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In addition to his children with Jayni Luke, Chevy Chase is also a father to a son named Bryan Perkins, who had a previous relationship with an unidentified woman. 

This extended family dynamic reflects Chase’s personal journey through various stages of life, from early marriages and divorce to finding lasting love and fatherhood later on.

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Throughout his career in comedy and film, Chevy Chase’s personal life has seen its share of ups and downs, yet his commitment to family and his enduring relationships underscore a deeper aspect of his character beyond the screen. 

His experiences in marriage and fatherhood have added layers to his life, contributing to a richer understanding of the man behind the comedic persona known and loved by audiences worldwide.

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Chevy Chase Now

chevy chase age
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Chevy Chase, at 80 years old, remains a prominent figure in American entertainment, celebrated for his contributions as a comedian, actor, and writer.

Recently, in 2023, Chevy Chase was cast in the movie “Glisten and the Merry Mission,” marking another chapter in his enduring career. 

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Known for his versatile comedic roles in films such as “Caddyshack,” “Fletch,” and the “National Lampoon’s Vacation” series, Chase has entertained audiences with his unique blend of physical comedy, wit, and improvisational skills. 

His ability to embody both comedic and dramatic roles has made him a beloved figure across generations.

Beyond his acting career, Chevy Chase has also ventured into writing, contributing to the humor magazine Mad and developing scripts for television and film.

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His net worth, estimated at $50 million, reflects his enduring success and influence in the entertainment industry. 

Despite occasional setbacks and challenges, Chase’s dedication to his craft and his ability to connect with audiences continue to define his legacy.

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As Chevy Chase enters his eighth decade, his contributions to comedy and entertainment remain a testament to his enduring talent and charisma. 

Whether on screen, on stage, or behind the scenes, Chase’s presence continues to resonate, leaving an indelible mark on the world of comedy and film.

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