Molly Ringwald Remembers John Hughes as Grudge-Holding Peter Pan


We couldn't all have the bliss of a purely epistolary relationship with John Hughes. According to another strikingly candid reminiscence by Molly Ringwald in today's New York Times, working with him in the '80s was a joy to behold that ended bittersweetly nevertheless, with the actress and her young comrades banished from a movie factory on par with Neverland.

Ringwald seemed to start out her op-ed with every intention of lionizing Hughes, some of which she still manages to accomplish with tales of uncontrollable on-the-job crack-ups and other perks of a Hughes set. "I just remember how fun it all was," says her Sixteen Candles and Breakfast Club co-star Anthony Michael Hall -- this despite his reported contention that Hughes literally never forgave him for turning down roles in Pretty in Pink and Ferris Bueller's Day Off. Ringwald was slightly better off, having last corresponded with Hughes 15 years ago (huge bouquet included!) and talked to him two decades ago.

Still, Ringwald writes, his principals' urge to branch out in the late '80s spurred a change from which nether Hughes nor his legacy ever recovered:

Most people who knew John knew that he was able to hold a grudge longer than anyone -- his grudges were almost supernatural things, enduring for years, even decades. [...] I wanted to grow up, something I felt (rightly or wrongly) I couldn't do while working with John. Sometimes I wonder if that was what he found so unforgivable. We were like the Darling children when they made the decision to leave Neverland. And John was Peter Pan, warning us that if we left we could never come back. And, true to his word, not only were we unable to return, but he went one step further. He did away with Neverland itself.

Interesting, sad, but perhaps for the best: Think of the extraordinary one-man shows we would have missed out on otherwise.

· The Neverland Club [NYT]


  • Lowbrow says:

    If only Michael Jackson had become John Hughes' muse, an indelible rapport between kindred spirits would have been forged.
    Imagine Michael, nymphish grin painted on his face, giggling uncontrollaby at Molly Ringwald while hanging upside down from the top bunk. "What's happenin', hot stuff? Hee-hee!"