Andrew McCarthy had to learn to embrace “horrible” Brat Pack label

Andrew McCarthy, a member of the famed group of actors who came to be known as the Brat Pack, hated the name for quite some time.

Last Updated on June 10, 2024

Brat Pack

The Brat Pack helped define the 1980s, that disillusioned group who navigated Saturday detentions, unrequited love and eventually adulthood. With a rotating group that featured the likes of Molly Ringwald, Andrew McCarthy, Emilio Estevez, Rob Lowe, Demi Moore, and so many more, the Brat Pack label served both as a play on the “Rat Pack” and a fitting stamp that laid out their reputation…And some of them hated it…

During the Tribeca Film Festival premiere of documentary Brats, director Andrew McCarthy – who starred in 1985’s St. Elmo’s Fire and 1987’s Pretty in Pink (the former being, along with ‘85’s The Breakfast Club, the most stacked of the Brat Pack flicks) – said that he originally thought the label was “horrible” but came around to it much later. “I turned 60 last year, and you start to look at your life a little differently. I looked back at this seminal moment in my past, that I’d been dragging around for so many years, and it seemed frozen in the past. And I wanted to bring it up into my present. And by examining it, I could sort of honor it. And if I honored it, it started to turn into a blessing. And then I was fascinated by the journey.”

McCarthy isn’t the only Brat Pack member to have hated the term, as Judd Nelson said it was inaccurate because they were committed to the movies and not some sort of hellraisers with a disregard for the craft. McCarthy was also joined by Ally Sheedy, Demi Moore and Jon Cryer (not generally considered a true member). Interestingly, McCarthy and Cryer did not get along while making Pretty in Pink, although the two have patched things up since. In 2010, many key Brat Pack members – including Ringwald, Sheedy, Nelson, and Anthony Michael Hall – reunited at the Academy Awards to pay special tribute to John Hughes, who passed away in 2009.

Brats joins together many of the actors “to answer the question: What did it mean to be part of the Brat Pack? McCarthy also sits down for a first-time conversation with writer David Blum, who fatefully coined the term Brat Pack in a 1985 New York Magazine cover story.”

What is your favorite Brat Pack movie? Which members stand out as the best representatives for the group?

Source: Deadline

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Mathew is an East Coast-based writer and film aficionado who has been working with JoBlo.com periodically since 2006. When he’s not writing, you can find him on Letterboxd or at a local brewery. If he had the time, he would host the most exhaustive The Wonder Years rewatch podcast in the universe.