DAVIE, Fla. (AP) — It happens all the time. Someone will pull up to the big metal gate in front of the clubhouse, press the intercom button and ask to see Bushwood Country Club. Or they’ll start dancing on the 12th fairway. Or they’ll inquire if the striped fedora for sale in the pro shop comes with a complimentary bowl of soup.
“Caddyshack” fans understand.
The film that sparked countless oft-repeated quotes, most of them made up on the fly by comic geniuses Bill Murray, Chevy Chase, Rodney Dangerfield and Ted Knight, has been out for 40 years and hasn’t lost one bit of its popularity. “Caddyshack” was selected as the No. 4 — fore? — film in The Associated Press’ list of all-time top sports movies.
“As a kid, I lived and died by that movie,” said Ryan Sundberg, now the director of golf at Grande Oaks Golf Club. “To be the pro at Bushwood, I think it’s pretty awesome. All my friends think it’s really cool. Once people learn about it, they think it’s the greatest thing ever.”
Grande Oaks, a private club in Davie, Florida, is the course where “Caddyshack” was filmed in 1979; hence, Sundberg gets to say that he’s the pro at Bushwood.
The club embraces its place in film history and there are more than a few reminders of “Caddyshack” there — the hat that Knight’s character, Judge Elihu Smails, was wearing when it was mocked by Dangerfield’s loud-mouthed character Al Czervik, who once cranked up a stereo in his golf bag for a little dancing during play on the 12th fairway — is for sale.
“You buy a hat like this, I bet you get a free bowl of soup, huh?” Czervik says as he sees the hat, then turns to see it atop Smails’ head.
Smails sneers a bit, then Czervik says, “Oh, looks good on you though.”
“The star power … it was magical, it was funny and the movie lives on,” said Bill Archambault, an extra who appeared in 17 scenes.
Grande Oaks markets itself as the “home of Caddyshack,” and the infamous gopher that tormented the course is now depicted in a head cover that remains wildly popular. And plenty of golfers know probably every line of the movie — ones that even PGA Tour players hear from galleries from time to time.
At the Phoenix Open in 2002, Chris DiMarco was standing over a 3-footer when someone yelled “Noonan!” from the gallery. It was a reference to what onlookers were shouting to disrupt caddie Danny Noonan, played by Michael O’Keefe, in the movie as he tried to make a putt to win the caddie tournament. Noonan made the putt and won. DiMarco did the same thing.