Gone Fishin' is a 1997 American comedy film starring Joe Pesci and Danny Glover as two bumbling fishing enthusiasts. Nick Brimble, Rosanna Arquette, Lynn Whitfield, and Willie Nelson costar. This film is the third collaboration between Glover and Pesci. The first two films with the two are Lethal Weapon 2 and Lethal Weapon 3. They would team up together again the following year for Lethal Weapon 4.
Joe Waters (Pesci) and Gus Green (Glover) are bumbling yet happy best friends who live modestly in New Jersey and have known each other since childhood. They share the hobby of fishing and win a stay in the Florida Everglades to do angling. When they take a road trip there, they are tricked en route by con man Dekker Massey (Brimble) and lose Joe's car to him. They then hitch a ride with two women, Rita (Arquette) and Angie (Whitfield). Rita knows of Dekker because he stole her mother's valuables, and they are looking for him. They bring Joe and Gus along and embark on an adventure that involves fishing, guns, treasure maps, boat chases, and storms.
- Joe Pesci: Joe Waters
- Danny Glover: Gus Green
- Rosanna Arquette: Rita
- Lynn Whitfield: Angie
- Willie Nelson: Billy 'Catch' Pooler
- Nick Brimble: Dekker Massey
- Gary Grubbs: Phil Beasly
- Carol Kane: Donna Waters
- Edythe Davis: Cookie Green
- Jenna Bari: Gena Waters
- Raynor Scheine: Glenn
- Maury Chaykin: Kirk, Waiter
- Louise Fletcher: Restaurant Owner
During production of the film, stuntwoman Janet Wilder was killed when a boat that was made to jump a ramp in one of the scenes landed on top of her. Wilder's husband and father-in-law were also injured.
In its opening weekend, the film opened at #3 at the U.S. Box office making $5.8 million USD approximately. The film was a critical and financial disappointment. In his book famed film critic Leonard Maltin gave the film a "BOMB" rating which is the worst rating a film can get from Maltin. He called it "an annoyingly unfunny gambit" and declared that it was a waste of Pesci and Glover's talent, and "this film really smells". Film critic Chris Hicks of Salt Lake City said after Gone Fishin' and 8 Heads in a Duffel Bag the Academy should have asked Pesci to return his Oscar (which he had won for Goodfellas). The film earned a pretty low box office income of about $19 million domestically.
"Gone Fishin'" was released by Hollywood Pictures which is one of the brands of the Walt Disney Company that releases more mature-themed films. Although the film could probably pass as family entertainment Disney chose to use their Hollywood brand for distribution considering the fact that the film has all adult main characters and many Disney films revolve typically around adults and children. "Gone Fishin'" started filming in November 1995 and completed filming in early February 1996. Disney had scheduled to release the film some time in late summer or Holiday Season 1996, but the film kept going in a back and forth manner in terms of getting a release date. Disney delayed the film's release to the end of May 1997 which more or less was the start of Summer movie season that year, and finally released the film nearly two years after it began filming. Despite the fact it was released later, in the Spring-early Summer time-slot of 1997, it did not much help the films chances of getting a very big audience because some other blockbusters had been released previously and more blockbusters would follow throughout the rest of the summer.
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