9 Hollywood Insiders Share The Most Iconic Movie Quotes, And Explain What Makes It So Memorable

“You talkin to me”, “ Say hello to my little friend”, “Life is like a box of chocolates”.

All of us have our favorite movie quotes. I turned to 9 Hollywood insiders and asked then about their most memorable movie quotes, and what made them so memorable. Here are the ideas they were kind enough to share.

Scott Williams, Executive Producer “NCIS” / Co-Founder “Shane’s Inspiration”

My Hollywood Background

Scott Williams has written for many shows (“Third Watch,” “Bones,” “Castle”) and is currently an executive producer on the long-running CBS’ hit series, “”NCIS””.

In addition, Scott is co-founder of Shane’s Inspiration, an international non-profit that builds playgrounds for kids of ALL abilities.

This is an iconic and memorable Hollywood quote

“The Place near The Thing that We Went That Time!”

“So many unforgettable movie lines, but I’ll go with a scene from Broadcast News, one of James Brooks’ most touching, hilarious and beautifully written and performed films. Not to mention, it’s unbelievably prescient, considering it came out before the 24-hour news cycle turned the world upside down. There are countless quotable lines (like the entire “”I say it here and comes out there”” sequence), but the one that inspires me most as a writer is one of its simplest.

Flanked by superb performances by Holly Hunter and William Hurt, it’s Albert Brooks who nearly steals the film with some of its best lines, courtesy of the genius Brooks. One of these comes on a phone call with Hunter’s character, whom he agrees to meet with by way of a shorthand reserved only for the very best of friends.

Brooks on the phone to Hunter: “”All right, I’ll meet you at the place near the thing that we went that time.”” “”Okay, I’ll meet you there.””

So absurdly vague yet completely specific between two soul mates. As a writer, you dream about short, sweet, simple lines that express volumes about a character or the relationship between characters. Brooks does it with ten simple words: The Place near The Thing that We Went That Time! Bravo, Broadcast News.

Jim Amos, Contributor Celluloid Junkie Founder Scout 53

My Hollywood Background

Jim Amos was formerly President of Distribution at Sony Pictures and Head of Sales at STX. He now writes a weekly boxoffice recap and preview column at Celluloid Junkie that is widely read throughout the film industry.

This is an iconic and memorable Hollywood quote

“I wouldn’t let down your good name, Gordon. I’d make a good Gordon, Gordon”

An iconic Hollywood quote is one that not only entertains but is also a reflection of the times from which it comes. Much of the allure of film is that it takes us to another place and another time. Quotes that incorporate that sense of stepping back in time are the most memorableThis is iconic because The film from which the quote comes, “”Local Hero”” was made in 1983 at the height of the excess of the Reagan era and this film is about the dichotomy between business and personal excess and a sense of a simpler, less materialistic life. Peter Riegart plays a Houston oil man who comes to a small town on the coast of Scotland to buy land for a refinery but discovers what is truly valuable to him is not his Porsche or his investments but rather an overall sense of happiness and a gentler, quieter life. We would discover later in the decade and into the 90’s that having more didn’t mean being satisfied and that’s what makes this quote so relevant to the time. The quote pertains to him wanting to switch jobs with the local innkeeper Gordon, a sublime and spot-on performance by the great British actor, Denis Lawson.

Anand Bhatt

My Hollywood Background

You’ve seen him on TV with Queen Latifah, Zoe Saldana and more. Actor, Producer, and Musician Anand Bhatt is the first Indian-American to be a voting member of the Latin Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences ( the Latin Grammys ). Anand Bhatt can be seen on various red carpets every year as an award consideree and/or guest or presenter.

This is an iconic and memorable Hollywood quote

“A gold medal is a wonderful thing, but if you’re not enough without the medal, you’ll never be enough with it.” — John Candy in Cool Runnings.

This is iconic because it applies to everyone in Hollywood. So many of us experience that feeling of hitting every red carpet, going to every awards show, but going home empty handed. This quote is so iconic because it reminds us that life is not about the awards nor accolades. And that if/when you finally do win — it won’t matter as much as you think it does. The entertainment industry chews up and spits out Anyone that hasn’t taken the time to develop an internal sense of well being.

Luke Sabis

My Hollywood Background

Luke Sabis is a filmmaker, actor, composer, and former musician known for acting in Cleaver’s Destiny, and directing Missing Child and Ghost Tenant. He performed with the rock band, The Take, in the 1990s.

This is an iconic and memorable Hollywood quote

“Listen to me…” Only one juror ( E.G. Marshall) does not turn away and he responds, “I have. Now sit down and don’t open your mouth again.”

My favorite quote is from the iconic movie, Twelve Angry Men. After a racist rant from a bigoted juror, (Ed Begley) deliberating the fate of a young man on a murder trial, all the other jurors turn away is disgust. The juror continues his rant ending with the line, “Listen to me…” Only one juror ( E.G. Marshall) does not turn away and he responds, “I have. Now sit down and don’t open your mouth again.”

Paul Cram

My Hollywood Background

Paul is the charming underdog you see on screen possessing just enough grit to not be syrupy sweet. He’s been in indie films across the country since the early 2000’s, and a few larger major motion films recently, like 20th Century Fox’s “Wilson.”

This is an iconic and memorable Hollywood quote

“Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.” -Rhett Butler

This is iconic because Rhett Butler’s brash toss-away-style line possesses something we all wish we had more of- panache. Sure it’s delivered from a suave, handsome man, but there’s more to it than just looks. Epic movie masterpiece “Gone with the Wind” is 3 hours 58 minutes in length; considering there are no hobbits or battling orcs in the film, that is a big time commitment to watch the entire story unfold! If you do make it all the way through those hours & hours of on-screen film drama centered around Scarlett O’Hara (played by Vivien Leigh), the main character who spends all of her time trying to control everyone around her, this response by Rhett Butler (played by Clark Gable) is indeed pure genius.

Halfdan Hussey, Co-founder of Cinequest

My Hollywood Background

Halfdan Hussey is a screenwriter, producer and the co-Founder and Director of Cinequest Inc. and CEO of Cinequest Mavericks Studio LLC. Hussey leads the direction of the Cinequest Film & VR Festival, which is an Academy Awards qualifying festival, and attracts more than 100,000 attendees each year. The festival is entering its 28th season in 2018, and was voted ‘Best Film Festival’ by USA Today readers.

This is an iconic and memorable Hollywood quote

“Such a lot of guns around town and so few brains!” — Phillip Marlowe, The Big Sleep — 1946

This is iconic because The Big Sleep delivered as great of a collaborative team as you can imagine: Nobel Laureate William Faulkner, the noir genius Raymond Chandler, seminal Golden Era director Howard Hawks, Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall — but some missed it’s greatness and found its storyline confusing. The movie, and this quote, speak to a truth that I very much believe in: that life isn’t lived in a straight line.

Aman Gupta, founder & president of Fan Expo HQ

My Hollywood Background

Gupta started his more than 20-year career in creating the biggest and best pop culture and fandom events with the Canadian National Comic Book Expo in 1995 and has since grown FAN EXPO HQ into one of the largest entertainment convention groups in the world. Collectively, it hosts more than 500,000 fans annually at FAN EXPO Canada, MegaCon Orlando, FAN EXPO Dallas, FAN EXPO Boston, Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo, and many more. Its next event is FAN EXPO Dallas, the largest comics, sci-fi, horror, anime, and gaming event in Texas, and quickly growing into one of the largest events in North America and runs April 6–8, 2018 and features family friendly activities and celebrity guests, including favorite time traveler Back to the Future’s Michael J Fox!

This is an iconic and memorable Hollywood quote

At the close of Back to the Future III, Christopher Lloyd as Doc Brown: “It means your future hasn’t been written yet. No one’s has. Your future is whatever you make it. So, make it a good one!”

This is iconic because:

In one word: HOPE.

FATE VS. FREE WILL. You can’t change many things into which you are born: your family, your genetics. your economic class. But you do have the opportunity to make decisions which may change the trajectory of a life. There is something very exciting and hopeful about being able to influence your future path by the choices and actions you take today and something we can all relate to, even now more than 30 years after the first film opened.

NEVER GIVE UP! The film’s writers Zemeckis and Gale are a great example of this perspective. The original Back to the Future script was rejected quite a few times. Zemeckis and Gale could have given up. They were faced with the possibility that this film would never be produced but they did not accept that as their destiny — they persevered — and pushed to get the script in front of one of the biggest directors in all film history, Steven Spielberg. In the end, the original film spent 11 weeks as number one at the box office. It was the highest grossing film in 1985 and won many awards, but most importantly, it won the hearts of movie goers around the world.

I believe, and thousands of fans would agree, that the Back to the Future trilogy is arguably the best movie trilogy ever. It avoids the “third movie” problems that other movie trilogies tend to have. Going forward 30 years instead of backward 30 years, and revisiting the events of the first movie was a stroke of genius that freshened the way we think of sequels and how they are made.

Alexander Cooper, parallelthefilm.com

My Hollywood Background

Alexander is an English actor and producer with numerous projects in various stages of development. He has taken various supporting artist roles in TV and film projects such as The Greatest Living Englishman, Downton Abbey, The Imitation Game, Woman In Gold, The Man Who Knew Infinity and Bastille Day. “Parallel” is his first Producer credit. His directorial debut “Sandow”, an ambitious feature film project inspired by first British Olympic gold medallist Launceston Elliot and his trainer, legendary circus strongman and founder of bodybuilding Eugen Sandow is in post production currently; it is reminiscent of classic films such as “Chariots of Fire”, “Rocky” and “Gatsby”.

This is an iconic and memorable Hollywood quote

“Fear can hold you prisoner. Hope can set you free” — The Shawshank Redemption

I feel this quote by the character Red, played by Morgan Freeman in The Shawshank Redemption, is so iconic because for me this characterizes what the film is all about and the key theme of holding onto hope through adversity and uncertain times in one’s life. So, I often think of that quote, and how crucial it is to be always optimistic and holding on to hope for a better world.

Lucas Keller, president, Milk & Honey Music

My Hollywood Background

Lucas Keller is the founder and president of Milk & Honey Music, one of the leading songwriter, producer and artist management companies with offices in Los Angeles, New York and Nashville. Keller’s clients, largely hit-making pop and country songwriters, and producers have collectively sold over 400 million records.

This is an iconic and memorable Hollywood quote

There are three sides to every story: your side, my side, and the truth. And no one is lying. Memories shared serve each differently. — Robert Evans

Robert Evans was a famous film producer, everything from the Godfather to Chinatown. His famous documentary The Kid Stays in the Picture references this quote. So many problems in this town come from miscommunication, or different perceptions. I thought I meant this, you thought I meant that. People remember stories differently, even though it only happened one way! If there was one line that explained the problems in business in show business, or the record business — it’d be this line, the truth!