Allyson Byrne Fields of We’ll Know When We Get There has posted a beautiful piece about her correspondence with the late John Hughes. As a teen she was so touched by The Breakfast Club that she wrote a letter to Hughes thanking him and asking if he would be her pen-pal. They wrote back and forth for years and through excerpts from his letters, she shows how incredibly caring and genuine Hughes was:
“I can’t tell you how much I like your comments about my movies. Nor can I tell you how helpful they are to me for future projects. I listen. Not to Hollywood. I listen to you. I make these movies for you. Really. No lie. There’s a difference I think you understand.”
He goes on to talk about why he left Hollywood, and nobody can fault him for the reason he gives:
John told me about why he left Hollywood just a few years earlier. He was terrified of the impact it was having on his sons; he was scared it was going to cause them to lose perspective on what was important and what happiness meant. And he told me a sad story about how, a big reason behind his decision to give it all up was that “they” (Hollywood) had “killed” his friend, John Candy, by greedily working him too hard.
Hollywood needs more people like John Hughes. People who will not sell out their beliefs no matter what. People who are genuine about their work and why they do it. People who put integrity and family before money and power.
You will be missed, John Hughes.