The year is 1954. Six strangers are invited to a dinner party at a secluded New England mansion, known as Hill House. None of the guests are sure of why they are there, but as dead bodies begin to pile up everyone suddenly becomes a suspect.
When it was released back in 1985, Clue was met with mixed reviews and a lackluster turnout in theaters. The movie is based on the popular board game, and in keeping with the structure of the game, the film had three possible endings depending on which theater you went to. This clever concept has turned Clue into somewhat of a cult hit today.
Now we’re not saying Clue is the greatest murder mystery of all time, but it is one of those movies that gets better the more you watch it. Repeated viewings give you a chance to study the logistics of each murder, as well as the relationships of the characters who are secretly in cahoots with one another. It’s a good bit of fun, and the idea of being trapped in a secluded mansion during a thunderstorm makes it prime viewing on a stormy night. Since production of the reboot seems at a near stand still we thought we’d take a look back at Where Are The Now: Clue The Movie.
15. Tim Curry (Wadsworth)
Tim Curry plays the all-knowing butler Wadsworth in the film, who oversees the kitchen and dining room areas of the mansion. On the night of this particular evening Wadsworth has invited a number of guests to Hill House that have been blackmailed by his previous boss, Mr. Boddy. Curry was asked personally by director Jonathan Lynn to play Wadsworth in the film, as the two had known each other since high school.
Curry has quite an impressive list of roles, and he is best known for his tendency to inhabit eccentric and over-the-top characters. These include Pennywise the Clown in the horror miniseries It, and Darkness in another 1985 film, Legend. Tim Curry also provides his Cheshire accent in a number of animated affairs, including Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Young Justice, and the beloved kids cartoon The Wild Thornberrys. Of course, Curry is most famous for playing Dr. Frank-N-Furter in The Rocky Horror Picture Show, and he is set to play the Narrator/Criminologist in the television reboot, The Rocky Horror Picture Show: Let’s Do the Time Warp Again, which will premiere on Fox on October 20, 2016. So mark your calendars, folks.
14. John Landis (Writer)
John Landis earned a story credit for his work on Clue, and he also served as an executive producer on the film. Landis collaborated with director Jonathan Lynn on the script and it was Landis’ idea to incorporate the multi-ending structure. A fourth ending was even shot for the movie, where Wadsworth is revealed to be the sole murderer who poisoned the champagne that every party guest was greeted with. However, this ending was never included as one of the possible outcomes.
Landis worked on a number of hit films throughout the ’70s and ’80s. Within just a four year span Landis directed Animal House, The Blues Brothers, and An American Werewolf in London. All three movies were massive hits, and though Landis has continued to write and direct he has yet to recreate the popularity of his earlier films. More recently, Landis directed a few episodes of Psych and appeared in the 2015 film Tales of Halloween.
13. Colleen Camp (Yvette)
If you think the only reason that Yvette, the French maid, is only in the mansion to be eye candy then you’ve got her all wrong. Yvette is mixed up in the blackmail just as much as the other guests. She was one of Miss Scarlet’s call girls and was caught in a scandalous photograph with Colonel Mustard. In one outcome she is even the one who gets the murderous ball rolling by killing Mr. Boddy and the cook.
Similar to her role in Clue, Colleen Camp was often cast as the sex appeal in a number of movies earlier in her career, including Police Academy and Apocalypse Now, where she was cast as a Playboy Bunny. Despite being nominated for two Golden Raspberry Awards, Camp continues to act today and enjoys more diverse roles than her earlier carrier. She starred in the 1999 satirical comedy Election, where she played Tracy Flick’s overbearing mother. Camp also appeared in the critically acclaimed 2013 film American Hustle alongside Christian Bale and Jennifer Lawrence.
12. Lee Ving (Mr. Boddy)
The blackmailer Mr. Boddy is the reason all of the characters have been invited up to the mansion in the first place. Before the group can turn against Mr. Boddy, he gives them each a gift, which contain the well-known weapons from the board game: a knife, revolver, lead pipe, wrench, candlestick, and hangman’s rope. However, before we learn anything more about Mr. Boddy, Wadsworth kills the lights and after they’re turned back on Mr. Boddy is already dead. Or is he?
After his appearance in Clue, Ving appeared in only a handful of movies and TV shows, including an episode of the Tony Danza vehicle Who’s the Boss. Ving is better known for being a musician. He is the lead singer and rhythm guitarist in the Los Angeles-based punk rock band Fear, which was formed back in 1977. Since its formation, Ving has been the band’s only constant member. Fear’s last original album, titled American Beer, was released back in 2000.
11. Martin Mull (Colonel Mustard)
The cantankerous Colonel Mustard believes that he is being blackmailed for the titillating photo of him and Yvette, but it is later revealed that he was a war profiteer who made a fortune by reselling stolen items he purchased from the black market. In one of the three endings Colonel Mustard kills a stranded motorist in the lounge with the wrench, as the motorist had previously worked for the Colonel and was privy to his unlawful dealings.
Martin Mull continues his career as a comedy actor today. He went on to star in a number of hit sitcoms, including Roseanne, where he played the boss, Leon Carp, as well as Sabrina, the Teenage Witch and Two and a Half Men. More recently, Mull reprized his role as private investigator Gene Parmesan on Arrested Development‘s fourth season which aired on Netflix. He also starred in a few episodes of the critically acclaimed HBO series Veep alongside Julia Louis-Dreyfus.
10. Kellye Nakahara (Mrs. Ho)
Just when the dinner guests are beginning to believe that the gong-banging cook Mrs. Ho may be the murderer, she is found dead in the freezer with a knife in her back. The guests can’t believe anyone would want to kill the cook; after all, her dinner consisting of soup and monkey’s brains wasn’t that bad. In two of the three endings Mrs. Peacock is revealed to be the murderer of the cook, as Mrs. Ho used to work for Mrs. Peacock and may have had information on Peacock’s illegal dealings.
After starring in a number of TV shows, Clue was the first film that Kellye Nakahara was cast in. After 1985 Nakahara appeared in smaller parts, and it’s worth noting that she was featured in an episode of Sabrina, the Teenage Witch with Martin Mull, as well as The Wild Thornberrys, for which Tim Curry provided his vocal talents. Nakahara has not appeared in anything since 2000.
9. Eileen Brenna (Mrs. Peacock)
The chatty Mrs. Peacock’s crime is accepting bribes from others so her senator husband can remain in office. In one of the possible endings, Mrs. Peacock is revealed to be the murderer of all the victims. (Which is a heck of a lot of murdering for one old lady!) After Wadsworth reveals that he is an FBI agent sent to spy on her, Mrs. Peacock escapes the mansion at gun point only to be ambushed by the police.
Following her portrayal as Mrs. Peacock, Brenna went on to guest star in a number of hit TV shows, including 7th Heaven and Will and Grace. She played The Cat Lady in the 2001 horror film Jeepers Creepers, and she also appeared alongside Steve Martin in the 2003 family-comedy Cheaper by the Dozen. But Brenna is probably best known for her role as Captain Doreen Lewis in the 1980 film Private Benjamin, for which she received an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress. She did not appear in anything after 2009, and in 2013 Eileen Brenna passed away at her home in Burbank, California. She was 80 years old.
8. Michael McKean (Mr. Green)
One of the least deplorable guests invited to Hill House, Mr. Green’s only crime, aside from being extremely accident prone, is that he is a homosexual in the 1950s – a time when being gay would surely cost him his job at the State Department. In one of the possible endings, Mr. Green is an undercover FBI agent and the whole evening was a set up for him to bring down the criminals at the party.
The year before playing Mr. Green, Michael McKean starred in This is Spinal Tap, another film that went on to receive high cult status. Since Clue, McKean has made guest appearances on a number of popular shows, including Star Trek: Voyager, Boy Meets World, The Simpsons, and Family Guy. McKean even had such impressive comedy chops that he became a cast member of Saturday Night Live in the mid-90s. Today you can find Michael McKean playing Chuck McGill, the brother of Saul Goodman on AMC’s hit series Better Call Saul, which was renewed for a third season earlier this year.
7. Madeline Kahn (Mrs. White)
Mrs. White – the black widow of the bunch – had two previous husbands who both disappeared under mysterious circumstances. She is brought to Hill House after being blackmailed about a possible scandal that would frame her as the murderer. It is later revealed that the maid Yvette had had an affair with Mrs. White’s husband, and in one of the possible endings it is Mrs. White who ended up strangling Yvette with the rope in the billiard room.
Before appearing in Clue, Madeline Kahn starred in a number of Mel Brooks’ films, including Young Frankenstein and Blazing Saddles which were both released in 1974. In the 1990s, Kahn had a recurring role playing the eccentric neighbor on the CBS sitcom Cosby. She also voiced Gypsy the moth in the 1998 animated film A Bug’s Life. Sadly, Kahn passed away the following year after battling ovarian cancer. She was 57 years old.
6. Lesley Ann Warren (Miss Scarlet)
The most flirtatious of the bunch, Miss Scarlet makes it no secret that she runs an illegal escort service out of Washington, D.C.. She is picked up by Professor Plum on the way to the mansion after her car breaks down and it beings to rain. It is later revealed that she already has dirt on a number of the other attendees. She even has the police officer – who later shows up to use the phone – under her thumb as well.
When Carrie Fisher, the first choice to play Miss Scarlet, entered into rehab, the role of Miss Scarlet was offered to Lesley Ann Warren. This Susan Sarandon look-alike starred in a number of 90s films, including Pure Country, Color of Night and the highly-underrated 1991 thriller The Limey. More recently, she had recurring roles on the popular sitcoms Will and Grace and Desperate Housewives. Earlier this year, Lesley Ann Warren played Elsa in the film Between Us which made its debut at the Tribeca Film Festival in April.
5. Jeffery Kramer (The Motorist)
The motorist is the first outsider to arrive at the mansion after his car breaks down nearby. He asks to use the phone and Wadsworth locks him in the lounge where he is to wait after he’s finished making his call. While on the phone the motorist is struck from behind with the wrench right before he is about to reveal which one of the party guests used to be his former boss. We discover later that it is Colonel Mustard who used to employ the motorist as his personal driver.
Ten years before starring in Clue, Jeffery Kramer played Deputy Hendricks in Jaws, which marked the beginning of his film career. Not too shabby for a debut role. Kramer worked as a voice actor in the 1989 Tom Hanks’ film The ‘Burbs, and his last acting job was in the pilot episode of Ally McBeal. Throughout the 1990s and early 2000s Kramer made his transition from actor to producer.
4. Bill Henderson (The Cop)
The cop arrives at Hill House after discovering the motorist’s broken down car. He’s immediately suspicious of the dinner guests, who seem extremely on edge, and he asks to be shown around the mansion. This leads to one of Clue‘s funniest scenes where the party guests have to pretend they’re being intimate with the freshly dead bodies. The cop reassures the jittery dinner guests that there’s nothing wrong with having a good time.
Bill Henderson was a native of Chicago, and he was more well known for being a jazz musician than an actor. Many of his acting roles were small cameos and minor characters, but he still managed to star in a number of notable works, including City Slickers, White Men Can’t Jump, and Lethal Weapon 4. His last acting role was in 2006, when he briefly appeared in Lies and Alibis, which featured comedic actor Steve Coogan as the lead. Bill Henderson battled Alzheimer’s Disease before passing away earlier this year at the age of 90.
3. Jane Wiedlin (The Singing Telegram Girl)
The Singing Telegram Girl spends more time on camera dead than she does alive. As soon as she starts her song and dance, she’s shot dead on the doorstep. It is later revealed that she was one of Professor Plum’s patients, with whom he was having an affair. Depending on the ending, the Singing Telegram Girl was killed by Miss Scarlet, Mrs. Peacock, or Wadsworth. Unfortunately, audiences will never know the nature of the telegram she was sent to deliver…
The character was played by Jane Wiedlin, who is best known as the lead singer and guitarist from the 80s pop band The Go-Go’s. Clue was Wiedlin first role in a feature film, but she has gone on to make small appearances in a number of films since, including Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure in 1989. While Wiedlin continues her musical career she has also branched out into voice acting, and can be heard as Dusk in the Scooby-Doo series.
2. Howard Hesseman (The Evangelist/ The Chief)
“Have you ever given any thought to the Kingdom of Heaven?” This is the question that the dinner guests are asked after opening the door to an apparent Evangelist. After he tells them that their souls are in danger, Mrs. Peacock slams the door in his face. She doesn’t want to let anybody else into the house as the bodies are already beginning to pile high. But unbeknownst to the guests, the Evangelist is actually the chief of police incognito. In each ending the chief storms in with a squad of waiting police officers and secures the mansion.
Howard Hesseman has an impressive number of acting credits. According to his IMDb page he’s had over 150 roles, ranging from 1968 all the way up until this year. After the release of Clue, Hesseman played history teacher Charlie Moore in the popular ABC sitcom Head of Class. He’s had cameos in a number of shows since, including ER, House, and Mike and Molly. He’s already set to appear in two movies later this year, Vermont Christmas Vacation and The Homeless Detective.
1. Christopher Lloyd (Professor Plum)
Prior to his arrival at Hill House, Professor Plum had his medical license revoked after having an affair with his patients. So it’s no wonder that Plum spends the majority of the movie trying to make a move on Miss Scarlet and Yvette. In one possible ending it’s the professor who murders Mr. Boddy with the candlestick in the hall.
1985 was a good year for Christopher Lloyd. Before playing Professor Plum in Clue, he appeared in Back to the Future as the eccentric scientist Dr. Emmet Brown. Of course, Christopher Lloyd went on to reprise that role in two of the sequels, but the actor has appeared in a plethora of other films and TV shows ever since. Lloyd played Uncle Fester in both Addams Family movies, and has had television cameos on Malcolm in the Middle, Fringe, and Robot Chicken. Lloyd even appeared in the episode of Psych titled “100 Clues” which was a send up to Clue. Lesley Ann Warren and Martin Mull also made appearances in the episode, which is a must-watch for any Clue fanatics.
So do you think they should expedite the Clue reboot? Leave a comment and let’s make it happen!