The Day My Son Told The Terminator What To Say To Wayne Campbell

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The following is an excerpt from my memoir MAGIC TIME: MY LIFE IN HOLLYWOOD

There were lots of things I could never do for my kids, but I could bring them to my sets so they could share those once-in-a-lifetime experiences that only show business has to offer.

While in the midst of shooting, Gary Lucchesi called and asked me to fly to LA to meet Lorne Michaels. Lorne wanted to make a movie called Wayne’s World, based on the popular Saturday Night Live sketch. I had seen a few of the episodes, but what did I know? The first thing I did was call my kids to ask them what they thought of the idea. All three of them said, “Dad, you gotta do it!”

Based on the sage advice of my children, I met with Lorne, and to my good fortune, I got the job.

By now Billy had graduated from Northwestern University and had worked on enough movie sets with me that I felt confident he could be the key set production assistant. He did a great job, even though his heart was never in the entertainment business. Like his great-grandfather before him, Billy’s heart belonged to the racing ponies, and it still does.

A few weeks in, we were shooting the scene with Robert Patrick, who played the cop in Terminator 2. It’s the moment where he gets off his motorcycle and stops Wayne in the blue Pacer and comes to his window and says something like, “You were speeding.”

It was a Friday night shoot, so I brought Robby out to the set with me. I was standing with Penelope Spheeris, the director, and Robby, watching them rehearse the scene.

When Robert Patrick says to Wayne, “You were speeding,” Robby, in true kids-say-the-darndest-things fashion, blurted out, “That’s not funny.”

I wanted to crawl into a hole until Mike Myers looked over at us and saved the day. “Hey, the kid’s right,” he said. “It’s not funny.”

Upon consultation, my twelve-year-old son informed us that in Terminator 2, Robert didn’t say anything about speeding but held up a Polaroid and asked, “Have you seen this boy?”

When Robby concluded for all the adults that that’s what Robert should say to Wayne, Mike agreed. They took a Polaroid of Robby, and when the scene was actually shot, Robert comes up to the blue Pacer with a picture of my son, shows it to Wayne, and says, “Have you seen this boy?”

When the movie opened, Robby’s Andy Warhol fifteen minutes of fame got a big laugh and of course he loved the fact that he was in Wayne’s World—if only by Polaroid. Clever kid.

For more, check out MAGIC TIME: MY LIFE IN HOLLYWOOD.