Born as John William Ferrell on July 16, 1967 in Irvine, California Will Ferrell would first become known for his 7 year stretch on Saturday Night Live and even that alone would have been enough to make him a household name but he has starred in countless films and was part of a group of comics that came along in the 90’s and really changed how comedy movies were approached. Will Ferrell hosted Saturday Night Live last night and it reminded me just how hilarious he really is, so I figured it’d be a great time to go over some of his films. As usual sequels will be included in wit the original movie so the list doesn’t repeat too much.
Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery
Released in 1997 and directed by Jay Roach the comedy film Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery would be the first film in the series of Austin Powers movies and featured Will Ferrell as Mustafa, one of Dr. Evil’s henchmen and although it wasn’t a large role it was a memorable one and was fun to see Ferrell cameo in anything at the time. The movie also starred leading man Mike Myers as the titular character and Elizabeth Hurley, Seth Green and Robert Wagner. The James Bond spoof movie was well received and grossed $67 million at the box office as well as spawning two sequels.
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A Night at the Roxbury
Released in 1998 and directed by John Fortenberry the comedy film A Night at the Roxbury was based on one of Will Ferrell’s recurring sketches on Saturday Night Live and featured many other SNL alumni such as Colin Quinn, Christ Kattan, Molly Shannon and Mark McKinney. The film was a commercial and critical bomb but still, it was Will Ferrell’s first leading role and there are people who love this movie so I felt it needed to be included.
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Released in 1999 and directed by Bruce McCulloch the comedy film Superstar was once again based on SNL sketches and starred Will Ferrell alongside fellow SNL cast member Molly Shannon. The film wasn’t very well received but once again I felt it needed to be part of the list as it was one of his first roles early on in his career.
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Released in 2001 and directed by Ben Stiller as well as starring him the comedy film Zoolander is a satire on the fashion industry and had Will Ferrell playing fashion mogul Jacobim Mugatu alongside Owen Wilson, Jerry Stiller and Milla Jovovich. The film wasn’t loved by critics but did decently at the box office grossing $60 million as well and did well enough to spawn a sequel in 2016.
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Released in 2003 and directed by Todd Phillips the comedy film Old School would be Will Ferrell’s first leading role not based on something from SNL and has him portraying a thirty-something that tries to relive his college years by starting a fraternity. The movie also stars Luke Wilson and Vince Vaughn and grossed $87 million worldwide as well as being nominated for two MTV Movie Awards.
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Released in 2003 and directed by Jon Favreau the holiday comedy film Elf has Will Ferrell in the role of a human that was adopted and raised by Santa’s elves. The movie is one of my favorites from Will Ferrell and for me at least was an instant holiday classic. The movie also stars Zooey Deschanel, James Caan and Bob Newhart and grossed $220 million worldwide as well as inspiring Elf: The Musical . the movie is considered one of the greatest Christmas films of all time by many.
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Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy
Released in 2004 and directed by Adam McKay the comedy film Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy features Will Ferrell as news anchorman who constantly competes with his female co-star. Also starring Christina Applegate, Paul Rudd, and steve Carell the movie was a huge hit and grossed $90 million worldwide as well as spawning a sequel in 2013.
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Released in 2005 and directed by Susan Stroman the musical comedy film is based on the Broadway musical of the same name which is in turn based on the 1967 film of the same name.Will Ferrell plays Franz Liebkind and is joined by an ensemble cast including Nathan Lane, Matthew Broderick, Uma Thurman and Jon Lovitz. The film was a commercial failure only grossing $38 million worldwide and received mixed reviews from critics.
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Released in 2005 and directed by Nora Ephron the romantic comedy fantasy film Bewitched is inspired by the old TV series of the same name and stars Will Ferrell as a down on his luck actor who discovers that his co star is an actual witch. Also starring Nicole Kidman, Shirley MacLaine and Michael Caine the film was both a critical and commercial failure but still isn’t all that bad in my opinion.
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Stranger than Fiction
Released in 2006 and directed by Marc Forster the fantasy comedy-drama film Stranger than Fiction stars Will Ferrell as a man who starts hearing a voice narrating his entire life. Also starring Maggie Gyllenhaal, Dustin Hoffman, Queen Latifah and Emma Thompson the movie received positive reviews but ended up being a box office failure not even making it’s budget back.
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Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby
Released in 2006 and directed by Adam McKay the sports comedy film Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby has Will Ferrell portraying an aging Nascar driver trying to hold onto his greatness and his failing marriage. The movie also stars John C. Reilly, Sasha Baron Cohen and Amy Adams and grossed $163 million worldwide.
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Released in 2008 and directed by Adam McKay the comedy film Step Brothers puts Will Ferrell in the role of Brennan, one of two grown men forced to live together when their single parents marry each other. The movie also stars John C. Reilly and Mary Steenburgen and grossed $128 million worldwide as well as receiving mixed reviews from critics.
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Land of the Lost
Released in 2009 and directed by Brad Silberling the adventure comedy film Land of the Lost is based on the 1974 TV series of the same name and features a great cast including Will Ferrell, Danny McBride and Anna Friel. The film was considered a total failure commercially and critically but is a fun little movie and s stupid and bad at time it makes it great.
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The Other Guys
Released in 2010 and directed by Adam McKay the action comedy The Other Guys stars Will Ferrell as one half of a team of New York City Detectives alongside Mark Wahlberg. The movie also stars Eva Mendes, Dwayne Johnson, Michael Keaton and Steve Coogan and grossed $170 million worldwide.
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Released in 2015 and directed by Sean Anders the comedy film Daddy’s Home has Will Ferrell in the role of a step-dad who finds it difficult to bond with his step-children once their real father returns. The film also stars Mark Wahlberg and Linda Cardellini and did great at the box office grossing $242 million worldwide as well as spawning a sequel in 2017.
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Although Will Ferrell has had a few films come out since Daddy’s Home none of them have been the huge hits some of his past films were. He has two films coming up that are both in post production with release dates to be announced the first being the comedy film Downhill and the second being the comedy film Eurovision.
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