A Christmas Story is a now much-loved holiday tradition for many families. The movie follows the story of a relatable kid Ralphie, as he dodges bullies and imagines what he would do with the perfect Christmas gift, a Red Ryder BB Gun.
Did you know that this film inspired the hit show The Wonder Years? We didn’t until we watched the DVD commentary with director Bob Clark. Here are ten more things you likely didn’t know about A Christmas Story.
I want an official Red Ryder, carbine action, two-hundred shot range model air rifle!
- The real Red Ryder BB Gun was originally made in 1938, and you can still buy it today. The movie version, which includes a compass and sundial, has never been available. Those accessories were added for the movie.
2. You can also buy the infamous leg lamp. Three leg lamps were made for the movie, but all were broken during filming.
3. Don’t worry; Flick didn’t really hurt his tongue. They put a tiny suction cup into a hole in the infamous metal pole, and Flick stuck his tongue onto that.
4. Mythbusters tested the concept of your tongue getting frozen to a piece of cold metal. It turns out that is exactly what would happen, so don’t do it.
5. Jack Nicholson almost played Ralphie’s dad (aka “The Old Man”). Casting him would have been a significant strain on the movie budget, so they went with Darrin McGavin instead. It was probably a good decision, it turns out.
6. Higbee’s is a real department store, and is the reason the movie was shot in Cleveland. They allowed the film crew to shoot the movie in the actual store.
7. Ralphie says he wants the Red Ryder BB Gun 28 times during the movie, or approximately every 3 minutes and 20 seconds, on average.
8. A Christmas Story comes from a series of short stories by entertainer Jean Shepherd, who also serves as the narrator for the film. “Shep” and his wife make a cameo during a scene in the Higbee’s department store.
9. Watch for the scene where Swede, the family’s slow neighbor with a heavy southern accent, stops to admire the leg lamp from across the street. That’s Bob Clark, the director of the film, making a brief cameo.
10. Someone bought Ralphie’s house on eBay and turned it into a Christmas Story museum. The exterior shots of the home in Cleveland were used for the movie, but the interior was shot in a different location. The new owner, Brian Jones, remodeled the inside so that it would match the movie set.
I TRIPLE dog dare you!
These days Ralphie (played by Peter Billingsley) works as a big-shot Hollywood producer on mainstream movies and TV shows. Here’s just a few of the things he’s been up to. It turns out he’s got a thing for Christmas movies.