Taglines: Five strangers with nothing in common, except each other.
Beyond being in the same class at Shermer High School in Shermer, Illinois, Claire Standish, Andrew Clark, John Bender, Brian Johnson and Allison Reynolds have little in common, and with the exception of Claire and Andrew, do not associate with each other in school.
In the simplest and in their own terms, Claire is a princess, Andrew an athlete, John a criminal, Brian a brain, and Allison a basket case. But one other thing they do have in common is a nine hour detention in the school library together on Saturday, March 24, 1984, under the direction of Mr. Vernon, supervising from his office across the hall.
Each is required to write a minimum one thousand word essay during that time about who they think they are. At the beginning of those nine hours, each, if they were indeed planning on writing that essay, would probably write something close to what the world sees of them, and what they have been brainwashed into believing of themselves.
The Breakfast Club is a 1985 American coming-of-age comedy-drama film written, produced, and directed by John Hughes and starring Emilio Estevez, Paul Gleason, Anthony Michael Hall, Judd Nelson, Molly Ringwald and Ally Sheedy. The storyline follows five teenagers, each a member of a different high school clique, who spend a Saturday in detention together and come to realize that they are all more than their respective stereotypes, while facing a strict disciplinarian.
The film premiered in Los Angeles on February 7, 1985. Universal Pictures released the film in cinemas on February 15, 1985 in the United States. It received critical acclaim and earned $51.5 million on a $1 million budget. Critics consider it one of the greatest high school films of all time, as well as one of Hughes’ most memorable and recognizable works. The media referred to the film’s five main actors as members of a group called the “Brat Pack”.
The title comes from the nickname invented by students and staff for morning detention at New Trier High School, the school attended by the son of one of John Hughes’ friends. Thus, those who were sent to detention before school starting time were designated members of “The Breakfast Club”. In 2016, the film was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”.
Molly Ringwald and Anthony Michael Hall both starred in Hughes’ 1984 film Sixteen Candles. Towards the end of filming, Hughes asked them both to be in The Breakfast Club. Hall became the first to be cast, agreeing to the role of Brian Johnson. Ringwald was originally approached to play the character of Allison Reynolds, but she was “really upset” because she wanted to play Claire Standish. She eventually convinced the director and the studio to give her the part. The role of Allison ultimately went to Ally Sheedy.
Emilio Estevez originally auditioned for the role of John Bender. However, when Hughes was unable to find someone to play Andrew Clarke, Estevez was recast. Nicolas Cage was considered for the role of John Bender, which was the last role to be cast, though the role was narrowed down to John Cusack and Judd Nelson. Hughes eventually cast Cusack, but decided to replace him with Nelson before shooting began, because Cusack did not look threatening enough for the role. At one point, Hughes got disappointed at Nelson because he stayed in character by harassing Ringwald off-camera, and the other actors had to convince Hughes not to fire him.
The Breakfast Club (1985)
Directed by: John Hughes
Starring: Emilio Estevez, Judd Nelson, Molly Ringwald, Ally Sheedy, Perry Crawford, Paul Gleason, Anthony Michael Hall, Mary Christian
Screenplay by: John Hughes
Production Design by: John W. Corso
Cinematography by: Thomas Del Ruth
Film Editing by: Dede Allen
Costume Design by: Marilyn Vance
Set Decoration by: Jennifer Polito
Music by: Keith Forsey
Distributed by: Universal Pictures
Release Date: February 15, 1985