The 1980 musical comedy The Blues Brothers celebrates its 40th anniversary this year, and has become a deserved cult movie classic. Go on a mission from God with these 10 fun Blues Brothers facts…

The Blues Brothers

It’s that sh-tbox Dodge again…
The Bluesmobile is a 1974 model Dodge Monaco. In all, 12 Bluesmobiles were constructed for and used in The Blues Brothers. One of them was made simply to fall apart.

 

The Blues Brothers

Uh… we’re in a truck!
A total of 103 cars were wrecked during filming, which was a record at the time. It was broken two years later by Gone in 60 Seconds II, which wrecked 150 cars. That record managed to hold for some 20 years, until The Matrix Reloaded destroyed over 300 cars in 2003.

 

The Blues Brothers

No problem, we’ll have it for you in the morning
Forget $5,000 to save an orphanage, Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi promised Chicago authorities a donation of $50,000 in order to get permission to film downtown. This included driving under the overhead railway line at 118mph – twice, as the first pass with no pedestrians looked off, so stuntpeople were brought in to inject some realism into the scene.

 

The Blues Brothers

You miserable slug!
The only time in the entire film that John Belushi’s character Jake’s face is seen without sunglasses is when he’s begging for his life in the sewer.

 

The Blues Brothers

I stood at the back of a cathedral, waiting, in celibacy, for you…
After he saved her from choking by applying the Heimlich manoeuvre, Dan Aykroyd and Carrie Fisher became engaged during production on The Blues Brothers. She married singer Paul Simon soon after instead… it didn’t last long.

 

Xanadu

A place, where nobody dared to go…
Our very own Olivia Newton-John was under consideration for the role that eventually went to Carrie Fisher. Livvie couldn’t do it though as she was busy on another musical, Xanadu.

 

The Blues Brothers

I hate Illinois Nazis
The fictitious Nazi assemblage led by Henry Gibson is called the “American Socialist White People’s Party” or ASWPP – “asswipe”.

 

The Blues Brothers

We’ve got both kinds… country AND western!
Sadly there’s no real Bob’s Country Bunker, as it was a set built on a Universal Studios backlot that’s now long gone.

 

The Blues Brothers

Can I help you?
Beyond the incredible array of blues and soul legends that appear in The Blues Brothers there are several other well-known people who crop up in various bit parts.
– Muppeteer Frank Oz is the prison officer who gives Jake his belongings
– Singer Chaka Khan is a choir soloist in the Triple Rock Baptist Church James Brown scene
– The movie’s director John Landis pops up briefly as a state trooper in the shopping mall chase
– Paul Reubens – aka PeeWee Herman – is a waiter at Chez Paul
– Director Steven Spielberg is the Cook County assessor (pictured above)
– Former Eagles member Joe Walsh is the first guy to leap up on a table in the closing scene
– Mr T, who was John Belushi’s bodyguard at the time, is apparently in a street scene somewhere

The Blues Brothers

Don’t you blaspheme in here!
While it didn’t come straight from the Pope, The Blues Brothers did get a form of blessing from Vatican newspaper L’Osservatore Romano, which stated “This is a memorable film and, judging by the facts, a Catholic one.”

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