Jim Belushi: A History of Being Terrible
Casey Affleck, Eli Manning and Prince Harry can tell you -- it sucks to have a more talented, more successful, more popular brother. But does it have to turn you into such a mean-spirited jerkweed? In the case of Jim Belushi, the answer appears to be: Yes, it sure does.
Maybe his new job as celebrity cannabis cropper has mellowed him out. But that wouldn’t excuse these five examples of Belushi’s terrible history.
No SNL wall was safe with Belushi around.“Somebody threw a chair through a wall,” says Julia Louis-Dreyfus, fondly remembering her days at Saturday Night Live. “I think that was Jim Belushi.”
Of course it was Jim Belushi. Rappin' Jimmy B was a throwing machine! You’re a young comic who has been handed the job of a lifetime (which absolutely had nothing to do with your last name) -- why wouldn’t you throw things?
“I supposedly threw a fire extinguisher at (NBC executive Dick) Ebersol,” Jim admits -- or did he? “I don’t remember throwing it at him. I remember going down the hall and getting really pissed and grabbing the fire extinguisher off the wall and heaving it toward his office.”
If you're still mad, Dick Ebersol, note that a heavy metal object was simply hurled in the direction of your office, not at you per se.
He slapped Stephen Colbert in his deaf ear.Former Second City artistic director and performer Dave Razowsky remembered this little ditty
One night when Razowsky was performing at Second City, alum Jim Belushi decided to join the fun for an improv game called Freeze Tag.
Belushi tagged out a performer who was in a scene with Stephen Colbert, remembers Razowsky. “He took that actor’s place, assumed their exact position…then slapped Colbert across his face, hitting his deaf ear. Stephen, shocked and in pain, covered his ear, backed away, then exited the stage.”
Unfortunately, the audience thought that was pretty freaking hilarious, emboldening Belushi to hand out some more slaps. Pow! Pow! Pow!
Before Razowsky could take cover, an actress called, “Jim, you got everyone but Razowsky!” “Just as she was saying ‘Razowsky’ I felt his slap across my face.”
It was probably good for the Second City comics that there weren’t any fire extinguishers nearby.
He doesn’t let his wife talk in the car.In an op-ed for the Chicago Sun-Times, Belushi shared a story about how he romanced the young lady who was soon to become his third wife. His courtship strategy was based on lessons learned from his previous failed marriages.
So one day, Belushi and Jenny (lucky #3!) were driving in Santa Monica, with Jim behind the wheel. Jenny suggested a turn up ahead might provide a shorter route. Uh-oh!
“Here comes the test, guys, for a successful marriage,” wrote Belushi in an actual newspaper. “I stopped the car, pulled over to the side, took off my seat belt, did a full, dramatic turn, and looked at her in the eye. I said, “I think you’re cool, but never, ever ever tell me where to go in a car. Never point to a street, never tell me which way is shorter, never talk to me about directions while I am driving my car. Never make a sound like an ‘oof’ when there is a car coming near us. I am the master of my car. I am in charge of machinery. This is my Batmobile. Robin doesn’t tell Batman where to go. I will decide, right or wrong, which way we are going ... But I still think you are cute. I like you.”
Awww! And they lived happily ever after.
He ruined Santa Claus.If you’re a kid of a certain generation in Wheaton, Illinois, you might think Santa Claus is still serving time in the pokey.
That’s because Belushi, then a student in junior college, had a side hustle dressing up as St. Nick and charging families $15 a pop to stop by their houses.
All fine and good until Belushi, in full Santa garb, got pulled over one day. Apparently, there was no place in the red suit for a wallet because Belushi didn’t have his license. The cops put the cuffs on Santa -- right in front of a playground.
And thus, Belushi created a jolly holiday memory: “All these kids in the backseats of their parents’ cars are rolling down the window going ‘Santa’s going to jail!’”
But Jim learned his lesson! No, not to drive more carefully or to carry proper ID. Instead, he hired an “elf” to drive ol’ Santa around so he could drink on the job.
He hates sick kids, apparently.Why does comedian David Cross have beef with Jim Belushi, especially when “there are soooo many undeserving douchenozzles with inflated egos in Hollywood?” In his book, I Drink For A Reason, Cross tells the Belushi story that really burned his britches.
It was Cross’s first movie job on a long-forgotten flick called Destiny Turns on the Radio. His part was small and he had no scenes with Belushi, but Cross was there when Jim filmed his final scene set in the Stardust Casino.
Cross was waiting his turn to film, standing off to the side watching the action just like a number of bored gamblers curious about what was happening. This was long before Cross was a famous face, so no one recognized him when he overheard a woman say to her friends:
“I’m gonna try and get an autograph from Jim Belushi. I have an eight-year-old son who’s very sick and he’s a huge Jim Belushi fan.”
Cross’s first reaction: What eight-year-old is a huge Jim Belushi fan? His second reaction was to volunteer to get the autograph for the lady and her kid. He waited until Belushi was done filming and leaving the set, then approached him with a piece of paper.
Cross pointed out the woman to Belushi. "Well, she’s got an eight-year-old son who’s sick, and he’s a huge fan of yours, and she was . . .”
Belushi cut off Cross in midsentence. “Jesus, I thought you were gonna get me a blowjob.”
Cross was silent for a moment, then wondered if he’d been misunderstood. He tried again: “No, she has a sick son who …”
Now Belushi was getting angry, telling Cross, “Jesus Christ, you’re worse than my second wife” before stomping away.
Yikes! Just think how bad it would have been if Cross had tried to tell Belushi how to drive his car.
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Top image: Broadway Video