Theme Times – Danny DeVito

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Danny DeVito By Gage Skidmore

Daniel Michael DeVito Jr. (born November 17, 1944) is an American actor, director, producer, and screenwriter. He gained prominence for his portrayal of the taxi dispatcher Louie De Palma in the television series Taxi (1978–1983), which won him a Golden Globe Award and an Emmy Award. He plays Frank Reynolds on the FX and FXX sitcom It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia (2006–present).

He is known for his film roles in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1975), Terms of Endearment (1983) Throw Momma from the Train (1987), Twins (1988), The War of the Roses (1989), Batman Returns (1992), Get Shorty (1995), Matilda (1996), Mars Attacks! (1996), L.A. Confidential (1997), Man on the Moon (1999), Wiener-Dog (2016), and most recently Dumbo (2019). He is also known for his voice roles in such films as Space Jam (1996), Hercules (1997), and The Lorax (2012).

DeVito and Michael Shamberg founded Jersey Films. Soon afterwards, Stacey Sher became an equal partner. The production company is known for films such as Pulp Fiction, Garden State, and Freedom Writers. DeVito also owned Jersey Television, which produced the Comedy Central series Reno 911!. DeVito and wife Rhea Perlman starred together in his 1996 film Matilda, based on Roald Dahl’s children’s novel. DeVito was also one of the producers nominated for an Academy Award for Best Picture for Erin Brockovich.

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Danny DeVito By Gage Skidmore

I watched the second Jumanji movie over the weekend ‘Jumanji – The Next Level’ [2019] as l am a huge fan of Jumanji – have the game, remember the first one with Robin Williams in 1995 [Still sorely missed], loved the remake with Johnson and Black – Welcome to the Jungle [2017] and l hadn’t seen much hype on the 2019 movie so was gently surprised and pleased to see DeVito and he has been on the Theme Time bio list since 2018 so it seemed only fitting to have him and his works displayed today.

As l watched the film l travelled back in my mind and tried to think of the first time l saw this wise cracking guy and l came back with that awesome series in the later 70’s ‘Taxi’. The next time l saw him was from the film One Flew Over – which in truth was his first performance.

From what l have read he is a genuinely charming and funny and compassionate man – and from what l have seen with my own two eyes l second the emotion.

So tell me, are you too a fan of Danny DeVito or do you not like him? Here are my Top 16 favourites of his in no true order.

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1 – Twins – 1988

A pair of twins emerges from an experiment wherein one twin is gnomish while the other is king-sized. Separated at birth, they only meet as adults when Julius comes looking for his much shorter twin.

2 – Get Shorty- 1995

Gangster Chili Palmer travels to Los Angeles and takes on a job offered to him by a movie producer to collect debts. Soon he finds out that his current job is not less than mobbing people.

3 – Matilda – 1996

Matilda shares a home with her parents and brother, who do not appreciate her. When her principal tortures her and a kind-hearted teacher, she uses her telekinetic powers to settle scores.

4 – Batman Returns – 1992

When Max, an entrepreneur, and criminal Penguin team up to wreak havoc in Gotham City, Batman decides to stop them. Catwoman’s alter ego, Selina Kyle, seeks revenge on Max for trying to kill her.

5 – One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest – 1975

In order to escape the prison labour, McMurphy, a prisoner, fakes insanity and is shifted to the special ward for the mentally unstable. In this ward, he must rise up against a cruel nurse, Ratched.

6 – Romancing the Stone – 1984

Joan Wilder receives a treasure map from her recently murdered brother-in-law. Her sister, Elaine, is kidnapped in Colombia and her kidnappers, Ira and Ralph, demand the treasure map as ransom.

6 – The Jewel of the Nile – 1985

An adventurous couple travel to the Middle East, and get drawn into the machinations of a power-mad sheik.

7  – The War of the Roses – 1989

A Washington lawyer and his wife, after a reasonably happy life decide to divorce. It turns into an increasingly ferocious battle of wills when it comes to dividing possessions.

8 – Ruthless People – 1986

A businessman cheats a couple. They retaliate by kidnapping his wife but, things don’t go as planned and the evil businessman is happy with the abduction of his spouse.

9 – Other People’s Money – 1991

A corporate raider threatens a hostile take-over of a publicly traded company. The patriarch of the company enlists the help of his wife’s daughter, who is a lawyer, to try and protect the company.

10 – Hoffa – 1992

Dramatized biography of the infamous American union boss Jimmy Hoffa, following four decades of his life, from his rise as head of the Teamsters Union to the scandal that led to his downfall. His subsequent disappearance was allegedly arranged by the Mafia.

11 – Man on the Moon – 1999

This film is a biographical journey of the late comedian, Andy Kaufman highlighting the struggles, success and the various roles he played in his life to his downfall, due to cancer.

12 – Death to Smoochy – 2002

Rainbow Randolph enjoys his life as a happily corrupt kids television show host, until he is caught in a FBI sting for accepting bribes from parents who want their children on the show.

13 – The Lorax – 2012

Ted, a 12-year-old boy, sets out to search the long-extinct Truffula tree to impress the girl of his dreams. However, in his journey, he has to overcome a number of obstacles.

14 – Jumanji: The Next Level – 2019

When Spencer goes back into the fantastical world of Jumanji, pals Martha, Fridge and Bethany re-enter the game to bring him home. But the game is now broken — and fighting back. Everything the friends know about Jumanji is about to change, as they soon discover there’s more obstacles and more danger to overcome.

15 – It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia – 2005 [6] – Present

A group of five selfish underachievers co-own a decrepit Irish bar and are involved in various controversies. There is no unity among them as they constantly keep plotting against each other.

16 – Dumbo – 2019

Holt, a circus performer, is tasked with caring for a baby elephant with oversized ears, Dumbo. But when it is discovered that Dumbo can fly, a few wicked men try to take advantage of the situation.

Bonus

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So? Fans or not?

Theme Times is a once a week feature – who would you like to see for the remainder of the month of May, check the options below and let me know in the comments section. Cheers Rory

Jim Croce

Alice Cooper

John Grisham Movies

Celine Dion

Bette Davis

Jane Fonda

Henry Fonda

Katherine Hepburn

Mel Gibson

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12 thoughts on “Theme Times – Danny DeVito

  1. Junior is my all time favourite of both Danny De Vito and Arnie (I can’t spell his last name). He is a fantastic actor 🙂

  2. Oh please do Katherine Hepburn but only clips from her movies from the 1930’s which are so laughable – “Morning Glory” (the calla lilies are in bloom again…) and “Holiday” – the acting is so bad!

  3. LOVE DeVito!! Ben likes Matilda, it’s a great movie! I’ve been a DeVito fan since Taxi.

    I vote for Croce, Cooper and Hepburn. You could do Spencer Tracy too😉

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