Adam Sandler’s starring role in the 1996 golfing comedy Happy Gilmore helped to launch the actor into international stardom, in addition to giving the world countless quotable moments to use in every situation for years to come. ("It’s all in the hips. It’s always all in the hips.")
However, Sandler wasn’t the only star the film produced, with all of the featured actors going on to star in high grossing films worldwide, and many even working with Sandler again both behind and in front of the camera. Because we still haven’t had enough of the great film, here’s where the cast of Happy Gilmore is now.
As far as Ben Stiller is concerned, we’re all in his world now. Although the mega-star only had a small part as an orderly in Grandma Gilmore’s nursing home, he made quite the impression and used the role to launch a superstar comedy career.
Just a few years after Gilmore premiered, Stiller appeared opposite Cameron Diaz in There’s Something About Mary, immediately pulling him to the forefront as a Hollywood leading man. He then went on to perform in signature roles in Meet the Parents, Tropic Thunder and DodgeBall: A True Underdog Story. Most recently, he starred in Zoolander 2, the sequel to the wildly popular 2001 film Zoolander, and has worked with his production company, Red Hour Productions, to executive produce Comedy Central series Another Period and The Meltdown with Jonah and Kumail.
Bowen, who played Sandler’s love interest in the film, is best known now for her starring role as Claire Dunphy on ABC’s Modern Family, a role which has earned her four Emmy nominations and two wins in the Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy category.
Bowen has also played Jack’s ex-wife Sarah for two years on Lost and appeared as a love interest for Silas on Weeds. Other TV shows that she has had starring or recurring roles in include ER, Ed and Boston Legal. Bowen can also be seen in various Neutrogena commercials as a spokeswoman for the brand. Obviously, she's kept very busy in the years since the release of Happy Gilmore.
McDonald played Happy Gilmore’s main villain, Shooter McGavin, and, since then, has continued to play villains in a number of different films. He starred opposite Robin Williams in Flubber and appeared as Thelma’s husband Darryl in Thelma and Louise.
In non-villainous roles, he appeared as Ward Cleaver in the movie remake of Leave It to Beaver, infomercial host Tappy Tibbons in Requiem for a Dream and as the president of the United States in Spy Kids 2: Island of Lost Dreams. Most recently, he had a recurring guest star role as a judge on The Good Wife. Though he may no longer be a go-to supporting actor for comedies, his career is still going strong.
At 7’2” tall, Kiel made an impression in every film he appeared in, including as Mr. Larson in Happy Gilmore. He appeared in a number of TV shows and movies before landing the part of Sandler’s boss and was even cast in the pilot of the TV series of The Incredible Hulk, although the part was later recast and given to Lou Ferrigno. He was also well known for his portrayal of the villain Jaws in numerous James Bond films.
After Happy Gilmore, Kiel did not do much acting, besides appearing briefly in Inspector Gadget and providing the voice for Vlad, one of the thugs in Disney’s Tangled. Kiel passed away from a heart attack on September 10, 2014.
Like many of Sandler’s co-stars, Dugan, who also directed Happy Gilmore in addition to his role as Doug Thompson, has appeared in a large number of films with the actor, from 1999’s Big Daddy to 2007’s I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry to 2013’s Grown Ups 2.
Dugan has also had frequent roles behind the camera, with directorial credits on The Benchwarmers, I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry, You Don’t Mess With the Zohan, Just Go With It, Jack and Jill and more. He has at numerous points been nominated for a Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Director, and even won it in 2011 for directing Just Go With It and Jack and Jill. According to IMDb, he also wrote and is set to direct an upcoming film called Dognapped.
Bay made a career playing eccentric older women, and her role as Happy’s grandmother was no exception. She had a guest starring role on Seinfeld as Mabel Choate, a woman obsessed with the marble rye that Jerry once stole from her. She also had roles in films like Stranger Than Fiction and The Wedding Planner.
Although Bay was confined to a wheelchair after having her leg amputated as a result of a car crash in 2002, she continued acting, with a recurring guest role on The Middle. Bay died of pneumonia in 2011, with her last role in the martial arts film Bare Knuckles.
Weathers reprised his role as Gilmore’s sidekick Chubbs in Sandler’s Little Nicky, playing the character as a dance instructor in heaven following his death in Happy Gilmore. Although Weathers’ acting credits since Happy Gilmore have been limited, he had a recurring guest role on the critically acclaimed comedy Arrested Development, playing an exaggerated version of himself who steps in as a coach for aspiring actor Tobias, and has appeared in films like Eight Crazy Nights and American Warships.
Weathers, a former professional football player, can also be seen in a number of recent commercials, including Old Spice, Credit Union of Washington and Bud Light.
Nealon was already a big name in the comedy world before appearing as Gary Potter in Happy Gilmore, with a multi-year run on famed comedy sketch series Saturday Night Live under his belt. Nealon has continued to work in comedy, appearing in numerous other films with Sandler over the course of his career, including Little Nicky, Anger Management and You Don’t Mess With the Zohan.
He also played the role of Nancy’s childish friend Doug Wilson for eight seasons on Showtime’s Weeds, appearing for a few episodes with Happy Gilmore co-star Julie Bowen, and currently voices the title character on Nick at Nite’s stop-motion comedy Glenn Martin, DDS. Most recently, he can be seen in Andy Samberg’s Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping.
Covert, who played Otto in the film, is a frequent Adam Sandler collaborator, taking on various roles in Sandler’s production company, Happy Madison Productions. On the acting side, Covert has appeared with Sandler in The Wedding Singer, The Waterboy, Big Daddy, 50 First Dates, Jack and Jill and more, usually in minor roles.
He also wrote and starred in 2006’s Grandma’s Boy. He has served as a producer for Sandler films like Anger Management, The Longest Yard, Grown Ups and more, as well as recent Netflix films The Ridiculous 6 and The Do-Over. Additionally, he helped to pen the scripts for Eight Crazy Nights, The Benchwarmers and Nick Swardson’s Bucky Larson: Born to Be a Star.
The former Price is Right host had quite the memorable cameo in Happy Gilmore, beating up Happy during the Pro-Am Golf Tournament and winning an MTV Movie Award for his performance. Barker stopped his job hosting The Price is Right in 2007 after 35 years in the role. He was replaced by Drew Carey.
He has since made a few cameo appearances on the show, including for April Fool’s Day in 2015. He has also guest starred as himself on Futurama and How I Met Your Mother and hosted an episode of WWE Raw. Most recently, he provided the voice for small-business owner Bob Barnacle on an episode of the long-running Nickelodeon cartoon SpongeBob SquarePants.
Even though he may not be as big of a star as he was back in the 90s, it’s still hard to miss Adam Sandler nowadays. The comedy powerhouse’s films still dominate the box office, with recent releases like Grown Ups, Just Go With It and Jack and Jill earning hundreds of millions of dollars each. Sandler also manages his production company, Happy Madison Productions, which he founded in 1999. The company has been responsible for putting out hits like The Hot Chick, The House Bunny, Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star and many of Sandler’s films.
Most recently, Sandler signed a deal with Netflix to produce and star in multiple movies; the first two, The Ridiculous 6 and The Do-Over have already been released, and are available to stream right now.
Did we miss anyone? What else are these goofy stars up to? Let us know in the comments!