1). Jimmy Duggan is Jimmie Foxx
The put-upon manager in “A League of Their Own” is based on the Hall of Famer known as “Double X”. Due to some poor, post-baseball investments the all-time home-run leader of the Philadelphia A’s was forced back into baseball later in life. Unfortunately a serious drinking problem precluded him from being given the reigns of an actual major league franchise and so he found himself managing a bunch of girls during World War II. He hit .325 with 534 homers in his career but, if not for a name change, would be most remembered as the guy who said that “there’s no crying in baseball!“.
2). Johnny Drama is Johnny Alves
Many of the characters on “Entourage” are thinly-veiled parodies of actually Hollywood players. Some are obvious while others you (or I might not get). For instance, Ari is based on the Rahm Emmanuel’s brother who is as powerful in Hollywood as Rham is in D.C.. Not much is known about Mr. Alves given the fact that he is not actually famous. He is basically Mark Wahlberg’s cousin and (assumedly) fulfills many of the same functions for Mr. Wahlberg that Drama fulfills for Vince. There is no word as to whether Mr. Alves and whomever is the inspiration for Turtle ever really “crossed swords” in the bad kind of three-way.
3). Jeff Dowd is The Dude
Some times there is a man…Some times there is a man who was one of the “Seattle Seven”, did a stretch in the can, moved to LA, produced some b-movies and became the basis for one of the most iconic characters in the history of cinema. Also, that man is apparently a pretty good bowler. Dowd is now on the lecture circuit giving his version of what really happened to Bunny Lebowski.
4). John List is Keyser Soze
The original title of “The Usual Suspects” was “Who is Keyser Soze?”. Had that title stuck, the answer would have been “John List”. List was an overly-average middle American who, at one point, murdered his wife and their three children. And then, like that, he disappeared. He was at-large for almost twenty years before he was apprehended. Writer Christopher McQuarrie has said that List was the basis for Soze, though, obviously, not a direct knock-off (no pun intended). Where Soze was a spook story gangsters told their kids, one more imagines List to be a spook story that husbands would tell their families.
5). Duncan North is Dex
Back when people used to make independent movies that could be consumed by mainstream audiences (instead of wholly for miniscule niches), there was a great little romantic comedy called “The Tao of Steve”. It was basically the story of this over-weight kindergarten teacher named Dex who did a bit too well with the ladies for someone in his station in life. It was a witty script with winning characters (and a Lemonheads’-heavy soundtrack). Apparently Duncan North was the basis for Dex. Originally the director had intended on making a documentary about him but must have realized that that would either be really self-serving or really creepy and so they made a nice rom-com.
I include this here not because society has been clamoring to know on whom Dex was based but perhaps because not enough people are aware that Dex exists. If you take a single point away from having read this let it be that you should bump “The Tao of Steve” to the top of your netflix queue.
Who have I missed…