Director: John Hughes
Stars: Matthew Broderick, Alan Ruck, Mia Sara
Plot: High school student Ferris Bueller wants a day off from school with his best friend Cameron and girlfriend. He's developed an incredibly sophisticated plan to pull it off. While they are taking in what the city has to offer school principal Ed Rooney is convinced that Ferris is, not for the first time, playing hooky for the day and is hell bent to catch him out.
Mia Sara says that Matthew Broderick actually tickled her feet and knees to get her to laugh naturally in the taxicab scene.
Cindy Pickett and Lyman Ward, who played Ferris' parents, married in real life after filming this movie. They later divorced in 1992.
During the parade several of the people seen dancing (including the construction worker and the window washer) originally had nothing to do with the film. They were simply dancing to the music being played and John Hughes found it so humorous that he told the camera operators to record it.
To produce the desired drugged-out effect for his role as the drug addict in the police station, Charlie Sheen stayed awake for more than 48 hours before the scene was shot.
John Hughes told Ben Stein, who had a degree in Economics, to present an actual Economics lecture in his scenes. Hence nothing Stein says (aside from the roll call) is scripted.
The idea of a sequel had gone around for years with Ferris in college or on the job somewhere, but the idea was dropped. Another potential idea suggested by Alan Ruck was that Cameron would be admitted to a hospital with a terminal illness. Ferris would break him out and the movie will end with him passing away peacefully. Matthew Broderick felt that the film didn't need a sequel, that this film was about a specific time and place that we'd all like to revisit and didn't need updating.
Even though they played siblings, stars Matthew Broderick and Jennifer Grey would later become engaged after this movie. Tragically, approximately a year later, after Broderick finished filming Biloxi Blues, and before Grey's premier for Dirty Dancing, the couple was involved in a fatal crash in Ireland, where the passengers of the other vehicle, a mother and daughter, died in the accident.
Cameron's father's Ferrari wasn't a real Ferrari. Because it was too expensive to rent one, three replicas were made--using an MG chassis--each with a fiberglass body.
Grace the secretary pretending to be Ed Rooney during the phone call from Cameron was improvised.
According to the Inside Story (1986) documentary, Charlie Sheen's character's name is actually Garth Volbeck. There was going to be a whole back story to his character and family. It was also revealed that the Volbeck's was the family to whom Ferris' mom was showing the house for sale in her job as a realtor. If you look closely, the tow truck that towed Rooney's car was from Volbeck's Wrecking Service. Also, a deleted backstory shows that Ferris and Garth were friends in the eighth grade. Garth's family's pretty messed up, and Ferris tried to help him and be his friend, but Garth eventually dropped out of high school and wound up in the police station next to Jeannie. That's why Ferris is so intent on giving Cameron a good time - he blames himself for not helping Garth enough when he could.
In the film, Ferris and Cameron are supposed to be 18 years old and Sloane, 17. In reality, Matthew Broderick was 23, Alan Ruck was 29, and Mia Sara was 18.
The Ferris Bueller character was named after John Hughes' lifelong friend Bert Bueller.
There is a theory circulating the internet that Ferris is just a figment of Cameron's mind. The theory states that although Cameron wants to be more adventurous and rebellious, he is afraid to, and so he creates Ferris. Ferris is all the things that Cameron is not. The theory also states that Ferris becomes a creation Cameron uses to finally assert himself against his father's cruelty and, more importantly, his own hypercritical conscience.
In order to keep the savage rottweiler focused on Ed Rooney, John Hughes had Jeffrey Jones carry a raw steak around in his jacket pocket.
John Hughes can be seen in a tiny cameo in one of the early Chicago downtown montage sequences, climbing literally across traffic, from right to left of screen, wearing a light blue jacket and big "'80s hairdo"
According to Alan Ruck, the role of Cameron had originally been offered to Emilio Estevez who turned it down. "Every time I see Emilio, I want to kiss him", said Ruck. "Thank you!"
After working together on Weird Science (1985), John Hughes offered Bill Paxton the role of the garage attendant. However, Paxton turned it down because he felt the role was too small. He admits that he regrets turning it down because Hughes never offered him a role again.
Mia Sara beat Molly Ringwald to the role of Sloane Peterson because--according to director John Hughes--she had elegance. According to Ringwald, "John wouldn't let me do it: he said that the part wasn't big enough for me".
John Hughes personally designed Ferris' bedroom, mirrored mostly on his own bedroom when he was in high school. Hughes said that the room was a disorganized series of pop references and other things because it would represent Ferris' mind.
Matthew Broderick's dance moves were choreographed by Kenny Ortega (later, of Dirty Dancing (1987) fame). Much of it had to be scrapped though as Broderick had injured his knee badly during the scenes of running through neighbours' backyards.