ByAlex Kraft, writer at
I am a fan of all things geek and pop culture.
Alex Kraft

It has been 26 years since Christmas Vacation was unleashed on the world, becoming a household staple during the Christmas season. The movie is the third installment in the National Lampoon's Vacation series.

Christmas Vacation tells the tale of family man Clark Griswold. Ever the optimist, as he invites his entire family to spend the holidays in his home. And, well, hilarity and mishaps ensue, turning his perfect holiday into a disaster.

Many of the stars went on to have long lustrous careers, many who still work today and some we haven’t seen since.

Remember when Clark tried to buy a gift for his wife and couldn't stop being insanely creepy/hilarious?

Chevy Chase – Clark Griswold

Since Christmas Vacation, Chase has worked steadily through the years, including doing three more Vacation movies; Vegas Vacation (1997), a Vacation online short called Hotel Hell Vacation (2010), and most recently he appeared in the Vacation Reboot (2015) where he was once again reunited with his on-screen wife, Beverly D’Angelo. He also appeared on the television series Community from 2009-2014.

Beverly D’Angelo – Ellen Griswold

D’Angelo has also worked in the industry heavily since Christmas Vacation. Joining her co-star in three more Vacation movies. But most notably she was on Law and Order: SVU playing Rebecca Balthus in five episodes spanning from 2003-2008. She had a recurring role on HBO’s Entourage, playing Ari Gold’s mentor Barbara “Babs” Miller in 25 episodes from 2005-2011. She has four movies all coming out next year.

Juliette Lewis – Audrey Griswold

Lewis has a long list of work spanning over the years working in both television and film, earning herself both an Academy Award and Golden Globe nomination for her work in Martin Scorsese’s 1991 thriller Cape Fear for Best Supporting Actress. She also had roles in movies such as What’s Eating Gilbert Grape (1993), Kalifornia (1993), Natural Born Killers (1994), From Dusk Till Dawn (1996), and The Other Sister (1999). She even dated co-star Brad Pitt from 1990 to 1993. She then earned herself two Emmy nominations for My Louisiana Sky (2001) and Hysterical Blindness (2002). Her other work in television include a 22 episode run of the short-lived series The Firm (2012). She has done two television series in 2015: Wayward Pines and, playing Detective Andrea Cornell, the mini-series Secrets and Lies with Ryan Phillippe. She is expected to reprise her role as Detective Cornell in a second season.

Johnny Galecki – Rusty Griswold

Galecki is probably one of the most recognizable figures since playing Rusty. He has gone on to create two legendary television characters, playing David Healy on the long running sitcom Roseanne from 1992 to1997. But is most known for playing lovable nerd Dr. Leonard Hofstadter on the popular series The Big Bang Theory, currently in its 9th season. He also had a three episode run on Entourage in 2011 playing himself. His work in movies since Christmas Vacation include Suicide Kings (1997), I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997), Bookies (2003) and In Time (2011).

Randy Quaid – Cousin Eddie

Since Christmas Vacation, Quaid has reprised his role as Cousin Eddie in two more Vacation movies including Vegas Vacation (1997) and Christmas Vacation 2: Cousin Eddie’s Island Adventure (2003). But his biggest role of course was playing alien abductee Russell Casse in 1996’s blockbuster Independence Day. Unfortunately, Quaid has been in the news in recent years not for his work, but because of legal problems, having been arrested eight times in the last six years.

Miriam Flynn – Cousin Catherine

Miriam has had steady work in the years since Christmas Vacation, working mostly as a voice actress, probably best known for lending her voice to the Land Before Time series as Grandmother Longneck. She also lent her voice in the much loved movie Babe as Mae, the wise old Ewe. She had a stint on sitcom Grounded for Life playing Sister Helen for 22 episodes during the show’s five year run.

Cody Burger – Rocky

Cody had a short lived career, only appearing in a hand full of movies and television episodes since appearing in Vacation. His last role was in the Disney movie Heavy Weights (1995). He quit acting after that and went on to study at Florida State University.

Ellen Hamilton Latzen – Ruby Sue

Ellen was a child star from 1987 to 1997. She is most famous for playing Michael Douglas’s daughter, Ellen Gallagher, in the 1987 thriller Fatal Attraction. She quit the business when she went off to a boarding school in Vermont and decided not to start again when she graduated. She now hosts her own podcast about the child acting industry.

Julia Louis-Dreyfus – Margo Chester

Julia is one of the more well-known faces from the movie, with her work spanning decades. She has worked on several popular long running television series. The most notable role having been Elaine Benes on Seinfeld from 1990 to 1998. She won a Golden Globe in 1994 for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for TV. After Seinfeld she went on to be in another sitcom as Christine “Old Christine” Campbell in The Adventures of Old Christine, which ran for five years. She won a Primetime Emmy in 2006 for her work on the show. Her most recent work can be seen on HBO playing Vice President of the United States Selina Meyer on Veep, where she has won four Primetime Emmys for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series.

Nicholas Guest – Todd Chester

Since Christmas Vacation, Guest has been working mostly as a voice actor.

Doris Roberts – Francis

Doris is a five time Emmy and Screen Actors Guild winning actress. Who is most remembered for her role as the matriarch of the Barone family, Marie Barone, on the long running sitcom Everybody Loves Raymond.

Brian Doyle-Murray – Frank Shirley

Brian Doyle-Murray is the older brother of Bill Murray, having done movies such as Caddyshack, Ghostbusters 2, Scrooged, and Groundhog Day alongside his younger brother. He can currently be seen playing Mr. Ehlert on the sitcom The Middle. He also works as a voice actor, most notably playing The Flying Dutchman on Sponge Bob SquarePants from 1999 to 2011.


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