When Home Alone (and Macaulay Culkin's iconic scream) graced movie theaters in1990, not even the creators knew how successful — and hilarious — it would be. And it still delights us to this day – especially since, upon its 25th anniversary, members of the cast and crew revealed even more behind the-scenes secrets.
The movie's writer, the venerable John Hughes, was on his way to Europe for the first time with his family, and just happened to think,"What if one of the kids were left behind?" He jotted it down, and wrote the first draft of the movie's script in just nine days (!) after he got back home.
The producers wanted him to play Harry, one of the bumbling burglars, but he turned it down. It was Joe Pesci, De Niro's Goodfella's co-star, who accepted the gig in the end.
Columbus would ask him to recite the "How am I funny?" speech from Goodfellas between scenes.
We still think the Saturday Night Live legend would have made a good fit, but apparently his audition wasn't up to snuff.
The role of Uncle Frank was written for him, but he turned it down. Gerry Bamman eventually got the job as the wily uncle.
They really couldn't afford it, but after snow covered the entire set the second day of shooting, the producers had no choice but to call in the snow machines for the remainder of the film's production.
"The script called for Macaulay Culkin to put shaving lotion on and suddenly it burns his skin and he screams," Columbus told ET. "We didn't know it was going to be the universal image for Home Alone."
The magic of props saved his feet from a whole lotta pain.
The McAllister's home was filmed in a real house outside of Chicago.
"...during one of the rehearsals, he bit me, and it broke the skin," Culkin recalls. And he's still got the scar as a memento.
Columbus wanted the entire house to come to life and chase Kevin in the dream sequence scene, but there wasn't enough money in the budget to do so.
Released in November of 1990, "Home Alone" had a 12-week stint at number one. And it held the title as "top-grossing live-action comedy" (it it accumulated $533,000,000 internationally!) for over 20 years — until "The Hangover II."