Before John Hughes wrote Home Alone, he scripted of another yuletide film, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. With a cast that included Chevy Chase, Beverly D’Angelo, Juliette Lewis, and Johnny Galecki, Christmas Vacation is a must-watch for many movie buffs every holiday season.
Chevy got star billing in the 1989 film, but as you’ll see here, several of its other stars have made names for themselves in the ensuing years — including, notably, Julia Louis-Dreyfus!
Chevy Chase (Clark Griswold)
Chevy’s last high-profile screen role was playing Pierce Hawthorne in the Community, though he made an abrupt exit from the NBC comedy amid reports of conflict with creator Dan Harmon. He later shared the screen with Burt Reynolds in the 2017 film The Last Moving Star, and costarred with Richard Dreyfuss in the 2019 film The Last Laugh. More recently, he took voice roles in the animated films Panda vs. Aliens (2021) and Glisten and the Merry Mission (2023).
Beverly D’Angelo (Ellen Griswold)
TV viewers saw Beverly guest-star on the NBC procedural Law & Order: Special Victims Unit in 2022 and recur as Susan Trilby on the CBS action drama True Lies in 2023. On the big screen, she joined Sigourney Weaver and Kevin Kline in the 2021 comedy-drama The Good House and costarred with David Harbour in the 2022 Christmas thriller Violent Night. Coming up, you’ll see her in the comedy film Summer Camp alongside Kathy Bates, Diane Keaton, and Alfre Woodard.
Juliette Lewis (Audrey Griswold)
Juliette currently stars as the adult Natalie in the Showtime thriller Yellowjackets, for which she has received two consecutive Hollywood Critics Association Television Awards nominations. She also starred as Judy in the 2022 Peacock drama Queer as Folk and as Denise in that same year’s Hulu limited series Welcome to Chippendales. And in 2023, she had a voice role in the Prime Video comedy I’m a Virgo.
Johnny Galecki (Johnny Griswold)
Johnny hasn’t had a screen credit since 2019, probably because he’s busy raising the son he welcomed with then-girlfriend Alaina Meyer in 2019. Before that career hiatus, though, Johnny starred as Leonard Hofstadter in all 12 seasons of the CBS sitcom The Big Bang Theory and reprised his Roseanne role by playing David Healy on four episodes of the ABC comedy The Conners.
Dianne Ladd (Nora Griswold)
Dianne recently wrapped a long-running starring role in Chesapeake Shores, playing Nell O’Brien across nearly four dozen episodes of the Hallmark Channel drama between 2016 and 2022. She also guest-starred in one episode of the CBS comedy Young Sheldon in 2021. As for her film work, Dianne appeared in the 2021 period piece Charming the Hearts of Men, the 2021 coming-of-age drama Gigi & Nate, and the 2022 drama Isle of Hope.
Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Margo Chester)
Though she only had a small role in Christmas Vacation, Julia has become one of Hollywood’s biggest stars. Between her starring roles in the TV shows Seinfeld, The New Adventures of Old Christine, and Veep, she has 11 Emmy Awards to her name. But Julia certainly isn’t slowing down: In 2023 alone, she starred in the comedy film You People, the comedy-drama film You Hurt My Feelings, and the fantasy film Tuesday.