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Dec. 11, 2004

AFI to count down 100 greatest movie quotes

by Alex Mazerov, Page Editor
The American Film Institute (AFI) recently announced that it will count down the greatest movie quotes of the last century in its eighth annual celebration of 100 years of American cinema.

AFI’s 100 Years…100 Movie Quotes: America’s Greatest Quips, Comebacks and Catchphrases will highlight the 100 most memorable lines of dialogue spoken in the movies. Chosen from a list of 400 classic phrases, the winners will be chosen by 1500 industry experts and announced in June during a CBS special.

The phrases will be judged on their legacy and their impact on American popular culture. "Great movie quotes become part of our cultural vocabulary," AFI director Jean Picker Firstenberg said in a press release.

The money lines vying for the title of "movie quote of the century" include Jack Nicholson’s "You can’t handle the truth!" from A Few Good Men; Arnold Schwarzenegger’s "I’ll be back" from The Terminator; Cuba Gooding Jr.’s "Show me the money" from Jerry Maguire; Mike Myers’ "Yeah, baby!" from Austin Powers; Sean Connery's "Bond. James Bond" from Dr. No and Tom Hanks’ "Houston, we have a problem" from Apollo 13.

The nominees span from the first full-length sound film—1927’s The Jazz Singer—with Al Jolson’s "Wait a minute, wait a minute. You ain’t heard nothin’ yet" to Gollum’s eerie hiss of "My precious" in 2002’s The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers.

Casablanca leads the field with seven nominations, including Humphrey Bogart’s money line, "Here’s lookin’ at you, kid." The Wizard of Oz comes in second with six quotes on the list, including Judy Garland’s "There’s no place like home."

Bogart has the most quips on the ballot with ten, followed by Al Pacino and the Marx Brothers with six each and Robert De Niro, Hanks, Jack Nicholson and Jimmy Stewart, who all have five nominations. Woody Allen and Myers have four nominations each.

Other nominee entries include Deep Throat’s "Follow the money" from All the President’s Men; Harrison Ford’s "May the force be with you" from Star Wars; Brad Pitt’s "First rule of Fight Club is—you do not talk about Fight Club" from Fight Club; Alicia Silverstone's "As if!" from Clueless and Robert Duvall's "I love the smell of napalm in the morning" from Apocalypse Now.

This TV special is the AFI's eighth top-100 list. Previous rankings have rated the best American movies, comedies, love stories, heart-pounders, heroes, villains and movie songs.

The full list of nominees can be found on the AFI web site.

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  • ... on December 11, 2004
    editors: fix the last line, doesnt make sense
  • yah! on December 11, 2004
    awesome rock on!
  • A Guy, on December 11, 2004
    The money-lines vying for the title of "movie quote of the century" include...Tom Hanks' "Houston, we have a problem" from Apollo 13.

    Uh, wasn't Hank's line a quote from Jim Lovell, one of the astronauts on board the actual spacecraft in 1970?

    Once again, corporate American co-opts and copyrights reality for profit. And we lap it up.
  • John Willmott (View Email) on December 12, 2004
    If I remember correctly, wasn't "May the force be with you" Alec Guiness' line?
  • Max Wass on December 12, 2004
    Heros and Villains were on the same list. They compiled 50 heros and 50 villains and announced them together. So this movie quotes list is actually the seventh AFI list.
  • hmph on December 12, 2004
    Whoa, I just saw All the President's Men last night!

    Silverchips must be spying on me.

    Anyways, Princess Bride should have had some top quotes. It did on most of the other top quote surveys. It's inconceivable!
  • jay on December 12, 2004
    Acutally both Guiness and Ford said it. Ford said it later...remember, he didn't really believe in the force at first, but he was saying encourging words to Luke (Mark Hamill) at one point and that came out.
  • another guy on December 12, 2004
    i agree with A Guy. the quote from LOTR should also not really be allowed as that was from a cbook.
  • Alex Mazerov (View Email) on December 12, 2004
    To clarify, the list of movie quotes is AFI's eighth top-100 list. AFI also did a series called "AFI's 100 YEARS...100 STARS."
  • Max Lockwood on December 14, 2004
    Do you guys reallllllly have to be so anal retentive about the movie quotes? jeez... everyone makes mistakes...
  • Avi on December 16, 2004
    My additions:

    "If you build it they will come" -Field of Dreams

    "I coulda been a contender, I coulda been somebody." - On The Waterfront

    and finally

    "Adrien!!!" -Rocky
  • godfather on January 6, 2005 at 5:47 PM
    the godfather I and II should both be on there. both of those movies are full of great quotes
  • coolguy on January 6, 2005 at 5:50 PM
    what about tony montana's "say hello to my little friend!" and something vile and obscene from kevin smith movie?
  • b on May 4, 2005 at 10:29 AM
    also kamehame haaaaa form dragonball z
  • Calvin (View Email) on May 5, 2005 at 12:45 AM
    Actualy, the Apollo 13 quote "Housten, we have a problem" was misquoted in the film, probably on purpose for hollywood drama reasons. Watch the HBO doc "from the earth to the moon" it has the actual recording. dam good Documentary also.
  • Mark Lucitt (View Email) on June 8, 2005 at 8:25 AM
    “Badges!? We ain't got no badges! We don't need no badges! I don't have to show you any stinkin' badges!” Alfonso Bedoya in The Treasure Of The Sierra Madre (1948).
  • Em (View Email) on September 13, 2005 at 12:01 AM
    "forth and fear no darkness" lord of the rings, this is one of the many quotes from the lotr movies (return of the king if u didnt know)
  • LuChera Huntley (View Email) on September 30, 2006 at 9:11 PM
    I like this favorite movie "Clueless". I like Alicia Silverstone's part As If! It's funny how that school business from the beginning to the end. That's because I pick up the pace. As If! I love you!
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