Outgoing President of the United States Donald Trump was a celebrity way before being handed the keys to the most powerful office in the world. As a reality star and well-recognised name across New York, the man has always had a lot of influence.
Back in 1992, when the sequel to the original Home Alone movie was released, audiences were excited to see Trump in the film, as he made a cameo in the Plaza Hotel’s lobby; a place he owned at the time of filming.
Directing a young Macaulay Culkin – who led the film as Kevin McCallister – on his way, Trump appears for just a few seconds, but it’s apparently a moment that had those at the movie’s first screening applauding.
Still, director Chris Columbus has alleged that the appearance came because of Trump’s “bullying”, rather than him being directly asked to feature.
Speaking with Insider, he explained: “Like most locations in New York City, you just pay a fee and you are allowed to shoot in that location.
We approached The Plaza Hotel, which Trump owned at the time, because we wanted to shoot in the lobby. We couldn’t rebuild The Plaza on a soundstage.
“Trump said ‘OK.’ We paid the fee, but he also said, ‘The only way you can use the Plaza is if I’m in the movie.’ So we agreed to put him in the movie, and when we screened it for the first time the oddest thing happened: People cheered when Trump showed up on-screen. So I said to my editor, ‘Leave him in the movie. It’s a moment for the audience.’ But he did bully his way into the movie.”
Following the release of Home Alone 2, the Trump scene has often been credited as one of those blink-and-you’ll-miss-it celebrity cameo moments in feature lists and the like.
We’re sure that the lame duck POTUS would receive a much different response if the movie was released today; although that would likely depend on whether or not his hardcore MAGA fans were at a screening!
That wasn’t the only film that Trump would be a part of. He’d later pick up cameo roles in Across the Sea of Time (1995), Eddie (1996), The Associate (1996), Zoolander (2001), Two Weeks Notice (2002), Small Potatoes: Who Killed the USFL? (2009), Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps (2010) and POM Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold (2011).
Once he leaves the White House if he indeed ever accepts the results of the 2020 presidential election it’ll be interesting to see if Trump makes his return to the world of showbiz, or if a life in politics is now what he’ll be sticking to for the foreseeable future.