The Cast of 'Planes, Trains & Automobiles,' Then and Now

9:00 AM 11/25/2017

by Courtney Idasetima

It’s been 30 years since Steve Martin and John Candy unexpectedly joined forces and tackled various modes of transportation to get to Chicago in time for Thanksgiving.

Steve Martin and John Candy
Steve Martin and John Candy

The holidays are always a hard time to travel, with general transportation woes, weather delays and every possible problem that can occur in between. In Planes, Trains & Automobiles, starring Steve Martin as a high-strung executive and John Candy as a graceless, clumsy curtain salesman, we get to see all that can go wrong. The two unexpectedly joined forces and tackle many obstacles to get to Chicago for Thanksgiving while giving audiences a comedic look at why might not be ideal to pair up with the opposite personality type while traveling for the holiday season.

The comedy, written, produced, and directed by John Hughes, was released 30 years ago, on Nov. 25, 1987, and in honor of the anniversary, take a trip down memory lane to see what the cast of the film has been up to since the movie's release.

  • Neal Page, portrayed by Steve Martin

    Courtesy of Photofest; Getty Images

    The comedic actor channeled a serious, put -ogether personality to make Neal Page come alive as a marketing executive in Planes, Trains & Automobiles. Although Neal is stuck with Del Griffith (John Candy) as his only companion on his quest, he has the heart to invite him over for thanksgiving dinner once they reach their destination and the news of Del’s family life is revealed.

    After the film, Martin went on to star in Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Father of the Bride  and its sequel, and The Pink Panther. He has also added writer, producer, and director to his resume and has hosted late-night sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live 15 times.

  • Del Griffith, portrayed by John Candy

    Courtesy of Photofest; Getty Images

    The late actor played the loud, out-there, optimistic, traveler Del Griffith. Despite his positive attitude during the film, Del later reveals his secret (spoiler alert) of not having a home or family to go to for Thanksgiving in Chicago.

    Seven years after the movie was released, on March 4, 1994, Candy suffered a heart attack in his sleep and died at age 43. Before his death, he starred in films like Uncle Buck and Home Alone. His last role was comedy film Canadian Bacon, which premiered in 1995.

  • Susan Page, portrayed by Laila Robins

    Screengrab; Getty Images

    In her first film role, Robins played Neal's wife, Susan, whom he is trying to get home to see for Thanksgiving.

    Since Planes,Trains & Automobiles, the actress has had roles in television movies along with the 1999 crime film True Crime. She’s set to star as Dean Patterson in the upcoming film The Rest of Us, which will hit theaters in 2018.

  • State Trooper, portrayed by Michael McKean

    Screengrab; Getty Images

    McKean played the State Trooper who stops Neal and Del for driving in an unsafe vehicle with no roof, no functioning gauges,a melted speedometer and no outside mirror on the on the highway.

    Since his roles as the state trooper, the Saturday Night Live and Spinal Tap alum has voiced acted on SpongeBob SquarePants. He also played Chuck McGill on Better Call Saul from 2015-17. He's currently filming the 2018 television miniseries Good Omens.

  • Owen, portrayed by Dylan Baker

    Screengrab; Getty Images

    Owen is another person the duo encounters on their journey to Chicago. He is the son of Gus, a man Del knows who picks Neal and Del up at the Braidwood Inn and offers them a ride to their next destination.

    Baker, who is still an actor, added director to his resume with his directorial debut in 2014 for the film 23 Blast. He has appeared on television shows Law & Order, White Collar, Chicago P.D. and The Good Wife. Baker is set to appear in the 2018 television miniseries Little Women and 2018 film Elizabeth Harvest.

  • Taxi Racer, portrayed by Kevin Bacon

    Screengrab; Getty Images

    The Footloose star was a pedestrian who raced against Neal in the film to grab a taxi.

    Since his running days, Bacon has appeared in films Apollo 13 and X: Men: First Class and, of course, inspired the game Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon due to his numerous film credits. He also starred in the TV series The Following, I Love Dick and appears in Syfy's upcoming Tremors reboot.

  • Car Rental Agent, portrayed by Edie McClurg

    Paramount Pictures/Photofest; Vincent Sandoval/Getty Images

    McClurg appears as the car rental agent that gives Neal a taste of his own medicine when he's frustrated after she gets off the phone with her sister.

    Since her role on the film, McClurg has gone on to do voice acting on television and films like Cars 2, The Life & Times of Tim and Frozen and has appeared on 7th Heaven, Melrose Place, Desperate Housewives and NCIS.

  • Neal Page Jr., portrayed by Matthew Lawrence

    Courtesy of Paramount Pictures; Gabriel Olsen/FilmMagic

    Lawrence made his film debut on Planes, Trains & Automobiles, playing Neal's son, Neal Jr.

    Lawrence went on to appear on films and television shows including Boy Meets World, The Hot Chick and Melissa & Joey, starring his brother Joey Lawrence.

  • Marti Page, portrayed by Olivia Burnette

    Olivia Burnette played Marti, Neal’s daughter in the film. Because of the difficulty of arriving back to Chicago, Neal misses Mart’s pageant.

    Burnette most recently held a recurring role on Sons of Anarchy from 2008-14.