The Classic Rock Cameos in Steven Spielberg's 'Hook'

David Crosby in 'Hook'
Photo Credit
video screenshot/Sony Pictures Entertainment

For kids (and grownups) of a certain age, there's a kind of charm to Hook, Steven Spielberg's film about a corporate lawyer (Robin Williams) who learns he's the grown-up Peter Pan and has to save his children from a vengeful Captain Hook (Dustin Hoffman). Though critics were mixed at the time, the film's colorful style and performances remain beloved by the people who saw it at an early age - and it arguably influenced a few decades of kid's films, particularly the Harry Potter film series.

For classic rock fans, though, there's a handful of really fun (if brief) cameos from some pretty notable names - not all of whom are primarily known for acting.

Early on in the film, when Peter Banning's children Jack and Maggie are "Hook-napped" while on a family holiday in London, the British police come to investigate, led by an Inspector Good. Look past the glasses and the mustache and you might recognize it's Phil Collins, fresh off Genesis' We Can't Dance (and clearly bouncing back from his modestly-received star turn in the 1988 film Buster).

READ MORE: Genesis Cut Up on 'We Can't Dance'

In his memoir Not Dead Yet, Collins recalled the nerve-wracking day he showed up to set to find that his lines had been rewritten entirely. "I don't want to mess this up, not for [Robin Williams] and certainly not for Spielberg," he wrote. Things got a little more precarious when Hoffman (who wasn't even in the scene) suggested Collins say less in his scene. They ended up shooting the scene as intended ("very funny, and people are laughing") as well as a shorter one - which they ended up using in the final film. (Hoffman, according to Collins, did at least start out with a bit of flattery, complimenting the singer on his Versace pants and turning to an assistant to make a note, presumably for his own pair.)

Once Banning makes it to Neverland and encounters Hook and his pirate crew, one of the swashbucklers is none other than David Crosby, his long hair and iconic mustache fitting in well with the style of the swordsmen. Of course, he actually never has a sword of his own: the character, known as "Tickles" in the script, is only seen holding a concertina, an accordion-like instrument.

READ MORE: Music is Love: The Rhino Podcast Revisits David Crosby's Solo Debut

"I've been a pirate all my life," Crosby cracked to Entertainment Weekly shortly before the film was released, "but this was the first time I was allowed to wear the clothes." The article notes that Crosby's intended two-day cameo became "a monthlong sojourn" on the set - but crucially, it does not mention that in the film's final battle, one of the Lost Boys hits him in the crotch with a loose wooden plank. Ouch!

Collins and Crosby might be the biggest rock stars in the film, but Hook is also packed with even more cameos. Jimmy Buffett also plays a pirate who attempts to steal Peter's Armani shoes, while Glenn Close(!) is the bearded pirate sent to the "Boo Box" for wrongdoing. Elsewhere, eagle-eyed viewers can catch Star Wars creator George Lucas and Carrie Fisher (Princess Leia herself) as a couple whose kiss on a bridge is elevated by some of Tinkerbell's fairy dust - and the younger version of Wendy who meets Peter Pan for the first time is played by Gwyneth Paltrow, in only her second role onscreen.

Read More

(Michael Putland/Getty Images)
Player would rule the Hot 100 for most of January 1978. Fun fact: bass player Ronn Moss spent more than 20 years as "Ridge Forrester" on TV soap opera, "The Bold and the Beautiful." Who remembers making out to the song? Watching Ronn on TBATB?
PETA
The Prince of Darkness is also a Prince of PETA, using his platform to discourage the practice of cat declawing.
On this day in '77, the legendary 'Rumours' took ahold of the No. 1 throne, becoming one of the best-selling albums of all time. From the drama, drugs and divorce that fueled the album to why "Silver Springs" didn't make the cut, here are seven facts you should know about the album. What's your favorite song off the landmark album?

Facebook Comments