Chevy Chase and Bill Murray: Story Behind How Their Years-Long Feud Came to an End

by Chris Haney
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Comedians Chevy Chase and Bill Murray infamously came to blows on the set of Saturday Night Live in the ’70s, but this is how their feud eventually came to an end.

For years, the two celebrities shared an open disdain for each other. When Chase returned to SNL to host the show in 1978, things came to a head. The cast didn’t appreciate the way Chase ordered everyone around, and Murray felt the need to say something. A heated verbal exchange took place in John Belushi‘s dressing room. Additionally, the altercation boiled over and became physical until Belushi separated the two stars.

The following year, director Harold Ramis cast both Chevy Chase and Bill Murray in his golf-based comedy Caddyshack. Although the two comedians only had one scene together, it helped them bury the hatchet. In 2018’s Caddyshack: The Making of a Hollywood Cinderella Story, both Chase and Murray touched on their old feud for the book.

“I’d never really done anything with Chevy. We’d always had sort of a …funny relationship,” Murray explained in the book. “But it was like, ‘O.K., I liked that when you did that. Let’s just keep going.’ We kept going and it was funny because Ty Webb’s not far from who Chevy is. So he was pretty comfortable in his space. And I was comfortable as Carl. So he could be free to laugh at me. And if Ty laughed, Carl thought it meant, ‘Hey, he’s my friend!’ It’s a really fun, self-aware example of whatever the heck Harold maintains the movie is about – status.”

Chevy Chase Shares His Side of the Story

As Bill Murray explained, the two actors fed off of each other while filming the famous scene in Carl’s humble living quarters. In fact, the two professionals barely relied on the script, instead opting to improvise most of the scene.

Coming together in that scene and knocking it out of the park helped each appreciate the other’s talent. In addition, their mutual appreciation is what helped them end their feud. Chevy Chase spoke about the situation from his perspective in the book.

“The scene really defined our characters. Carl clearly wanted more than he had in life and was happy to see me because I had a pool and a big house. And I clearly wanted less of him. Harold had to stop me and Billy at some point, because we could have gone on all night,” Chevy Chase said of their scene together.

Chase also heaped praise on Murray for his Caddyshack performance. Even though Chase may be the main character of the comedy, he admits that Murray stole the show.

“We got over everything. The tension was short-lived,” Chase added about their feud. “I have nothing but admiration and affection for Bill. He still can be a surly character, to say the least. But ultimately he’s a good guy. Even though I’m the number one star in the movie under the title, I’ll always think of Caddyshack as Billy’s movie.”

The two stars weren’t originally scheduled to film a scene together. But after seeing how much comedy gold each was producing in their other scenes, Ramis knew they had to film at least one scene together. It’s a good thing they agreed to it. Not only is it a hilarious scene in the movie with some great quotes. But the comedians might still be feuding to this day if they weren’t forced to come together and work through their issues. All’s well that ends well.

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