Behind the Scenes: A Christmas Story (1983)

A Christmas Story (Barklage)

Director Bob Clark (pointing to the desk drawer) on the set of 1983’s A Christmas Story. Based on a series of short stories by Jean Shepherd first published in the 1960s in Playboy of all places, A Christmas Story was filmed in Cleveland (the exterior of the family’s house, the department store) and Ontario (the house interiors, Ralphie’s school).

Careers don’t come any more eclectic than Clark’s. He made dramas (guiding Jack Lemmon to an Oscar nomination for 1980’s Tribute), mysteries (the Sherlock Holmes outing Murder by Decree), buddy cop movies (the Gene Hackman/Dan Aykroyd teaming Loose Cannons), fish-out-of-water romances (the Dolly Parton/Sylvester Stallone country music misfire Rhinestone), horror movies (the well-regarded Black Christmas) and teen sex comedies (Porky’s). It was the success of 1982’s Porky’s – a low-brow ode to adolescent libido most famed for a shower peephole gag – that actually gave Clark the pull to finally get A Christmas Story made after years of futilely trying to get the movie financed.

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