So the Toronto Film Festival has announced that henceforth September 5th shall be known as “Bill Murray Day.” And all of Bill Murray‘s fans are like “Wrong, Toronto Film Fest, EVERY day is Bill Murray Day.”
No, but in all seriousness, it is really rad that this actor is getting a day to call his very own. He’s certainly earned it. Think about how much awesomeness Murray has contributed to the film world. He got his start on Saturday Night Live, where he kicked ass and took names from 1977-1980.
In the 1980s, he transitioned into film, where he became a comedy all-star, contributing his hilarity to comedy classics Caddyshack, Stripes and Tootsie. He mixed it up a little bit in the mid-’80s early ’90s with a musical turn in Little Shop of Horrors and the kind-of-a-comedy-but-also-pretty-freaking-serious-and-philosophical Groundhog’s Day. He acted opposite Looney Tunes in everyone’s-favorite-kid’s-movie-from-the-’90s Space Jam. Did I mention Ghostbusters? Yeah. He did that.
In 1998, Murray appeared in Wes Anderson’s Rushmore, and joined Anderson’s fabled stable of actors, playing major roles in all of Anderson’s subsequent films (The Royal Tenenbaums, Life Aquatic, Darjeeling Limited, Fantastic Mr. Fox, Moonrise Kingdom, and Grand Budapest Hotel). In the last decade, he seems pretty set on balancing the dramatic (Lost in Translation) with the comedic (Zombieland).
He’s dabbled as a screenwriter (notable credits include work on Saturday Night Live and the screenplay adaptation of the W. Somerset Maugham novel The Razor’s Edge, which he also starred in), as well as experimented with directing and producing, but with 75 acting credits to his IMDb page (and counting!) it is clear that Murray most belongs in front of the camera. Upcoming films include the title role in St. Vincent (which is premiering at Toronto Film Festival, hence the whole Bill-Murray-getting-his-own-day-thing), Rock the Kasbah, (costarring our own Zooey D!), Cameron Crowe’s yet-to-be-titled next film, and next year’s star-studded remake of The Jungle Book (Murray is going to be Baloo, ScarJo is going to be Kaa, Christopher Walken is signed up for King Louie, and Idris Elba is set to play Shere Khan, I am in this remake to WIN this remake).
If you were going to give any actor his own day, Murray is an A+ pick. He refuses to be pigeon-holed into one genre, and instead, like an acting bloodhound, he’s constantly sniffing out and seizing up the best material he can find. He’s a great example of a role model who refused to limit himself or let himself be limited by others. And he’s been amazing in a gazillion and one films (75, whatever, it FEELS like a gazillion and one). Congratulations, Bill Murray. You earned your day, you enjoy it.