FILM 1443: THE ADDAMS FAMILY
TRIVIA: Producer Scott Rudin got the idea of making the movie after shuttling various studio executives around in a van one day. One of them spontaneously started humming the theme song from The Addams Family (1964) series, and the rest of the van's occupants started singing the lyrics. This led Rudin to believe that there was sufficient residual interest in the show and cartoon for him to attempt a feature film.
By the time this movie was made, all of the adult cast members from the original series had died except John Astin, who had played Gomez. Astin ironically also outlived the movie Gomez, Raul Julia, who died in 1994.
The name Wednesday is a reference to the line in the Mother Goose poem that goes, "Wednesday's child is full of woe."
Tim Burton was originally set to direct. He had worked with both writers Caroline Thompson and Larry Wilson individually. Thompson on Edward Scissorhands (1990) and The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993), and Wilson on Beetlejuice (1988).
Anjelica Huston drew inspiration for her portrayal of Morticia Adams not from Carolyn Jones from the TV series but by watching Grey Gardens (1975), David Maysles and Albert Maysles's documentary about two eccentric old women found living in a decaying mansion. The women, Edith Bouvier Beale (AKA "Big Edie") and Edith 'Little Edie' Bouvier Beale, are, respectively, the aunt and cousin of the late Jacqueline Kennedy.
Early makeup designs for Gomez included dark circles around his eyes, similar to Fester's. This was eliminated before filming, but can still be seen on the film's posters and other publicity material.
David Levy, who executive produced The Addams Family (1964), filed a lawsuit against Paramount after the film was released. He claimed that many Addams Family character "trademarks" used in the film, including Gomez' fascination with blowing up model trains, the characters of Thing and Cousin Itt, Lurch's fondness for playing the harpsichord, and the passionate tangos danced by Morticia and Gomez, were original ideas created by him exclusively for the TV series and not part of the original Charles Addams cartoons, for which Paramount had purchased the movie rights. The lawsuit was later settled out of court.
Due to rights issues, the film was never released on DVD in countries outside North America (except for Great Britain) until 2013.
In order to gain Morticia's figure, Anjelica Huston wore a metal corset. She also had to get gauze eye lifts, neck tucks and fake nails daily. She told Entertainment Weekly, "Come afternoon, I could be prone to a really good headache from my various bondages. And because I couldn't lie down (in the corset) or rest, it was fairly exhausting".
Anthony Hopkins turned down the role of Uncle Fester.
Barry Sonnenfeld's directorial debut.