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Bruce Mcculloch

Bruce Mcculloch

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Also Known As: Bruce Mccolloch, The Kids In The Hall (The Kids In The Hall), Bruce Mccullough Died:
Born: May 12, 1961 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Edmonton, Alberta, CA Profession: songwriter, comedy writer, actor, playwright, screenwriter, director, forklift operator

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Described by his Kids in the Hall cohorts as "the socially retarded but lovable member" of the comedy troupe, sweet-faced, big-eyed Bruce McCulloch met Mark McKinney while working with the Loose Moose Theatre Company in his native Calgary. After forming 'The Audience' together, the duo moved to Toronto, eventually teaming with Kevin McDonald, Dave Foley and Scott Thompson as 'The Kids in the Hall' (the group's name coming from the description Jack Benny used for young writers who were trying to sell him gags). Through years of live performing, the quintet honed its shtick, a distinctive mix of zany antics, ribald humor, somewhat surreal moments and musings on life, before Lorne Michaels, a Toronto native best known for creating NBC's "Saturday Night Live", launched them in 1989, producing their Canadian TV show (aired in the USA on HBO, CBS and Comedy Central). Boyishly cute, but shorter and more muscular than his compatriots, McCulloch frequently appeared in women's clothing (as did the others), not just for drag novelty, but to create full-bodied female characters.When the series went off the air in 1995, the group members (with the exception of Foley who had already committed to NBC's "NewsRadio")...

Described by his Kids in the Hall cohorts as "the socially retarded but lovable member" of the comedy troupe, sweet-faced, big-eyed Bruce McCulloch met Mark McKinney while working with the Loose Moose Theatre Company in his native Calgary. After forming 'The Audience' together, the duo moved to Toronto, eventually teaming with Kevin McDonald, Dave Foley and Scott Thompson as 'The Kids in the Hall' (the group's name coming from the description Jack Benny used for young writers who were trying to sell him gags). Through years of live performing, the quintet honed its shtick, a distinctive mix of zany antics, ribald humor, somewhat surreal moments and musings on life, before Lorne Michaels, a Toronto native best known for creating NBC's "Saturday Night Live", launched them in 1989, producing their Canadian TV show (aired in the USA on HBO, CBS and Comedy Central). Boyishly cute, but shorter and more muscular than his compatriots, McCulloch frequently appeared in women's clothing (as did the others), not just for drag novelty, but to create full-bodied female characters.

When the series went off the air in 1995, the group members (with the exception of Foley who had already committed to NBC's "NewsRadio") banged out the feature-length "The Kids in the Hall BRAIN CANDY" (1996), and the most telling symbol of Foley's detachment from his friends was his refusal to appear in drag when the screenplay went before the cameras. A writer close to the troupe told the NEW YORK POST (April 8, 1996): "He wants to be a big star, and you don't do that wearing dresses and playing gay men." The Kids energetically portrayed over thirty characters, and though some critics found the confection palatable, particularly the splashy "coming out" musical number, most did not feel the sum of its sweet parts made for a satisfying whole. McCulloch, whose debut album "Shame-Based Man" had come out the previous year, contributed two songs to its soundtrack. He has also authored and performed four one-man stage shows, "Slightly Bigger Cities (One Yellow Rabbit)", "Two Headed Roommate", "Jazz Stenographers" and "Trapped on a Lawnchair", as well as contributing material to "Saturday Night Live".

In 1998, McCulloch made his big-screen writing and directing debut with the fairly pleasant (if slight) Toronto-based comedy "Dog Park", a picture with the clever take that dog parks are the singles bars of the 90s. He also acted in it but gave the best comic material to his old pal McKinney as the canine psychiatrist. He turned up as Carl Bernstein opposite Will Farrell's Bob Woodward for the Watergate-era satire "Dick" (1999), which also featured Foley as Bob Haldeman, and returned behind the camera to helm that year's Michaels-produced "Superstar", starring Molly Shannon and Farrell. Unfortunately, it suffered the growing pains that most "SNL" skits experience when expanded to feature length. McCulloch continued his association with Canada's CBC when he played the role of Rex Reilly, host of series star (and creator) Don McKellar's favorite talk show, in "Twitch City", described as "'The Odd Couple' on acid and 'Friends' from Hell". The network rebroadcast the six original episodes in the fall of 1999, and seven new ones followed in 2000.

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

DIRECTOR:

1.
2.
  Stealing Harvard (2002) Director
3.
  Superstar (1999) Director
4.
  Dog Park (1998) Director

CAST: (feature film)

1.
2.
 Stealing Harvard (2002)
3.
 Dick (1999) Carl Bernstein
4.
 Dog Park (1998) Jeff
5.
 Kids in the Hall BRAIN CANDY (1996) Alice; Cisco; Cop; Grivo; White Trash Man
6.
7.
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

:
Met Mark McKinney while performing with Calgary's Loose Moose Theatre Company
1981:
Formed 'The Audience' in Calgary with McKinney
1983:
Moved to Toronto with McKinney
1984:
Formed 'The Kids in the Hall' (name derived from the young comedy writers who used to write jokes for Jack Benny during the 50s) with McKinney, Scott Thompson, Dave Foley and Kevin McDonald
1985:
Wrote for and made occasional appearances on "Saturday Night Live" (NBC)
1987:
Acted in "Anne of Avonlea: The Continuing Story of Anne of Green Gables", a CBC project airing in the USA on the Disney Channel
1988:
Co-scripted "Superman's 50th Anniversary: A Celebration of the Man of Steel" (CBS), executive produced by SNL's Lorne Michaels
:
TV show "The Kids in the Hall" aired in Canada (CBC) and on HBO, CBS and Comedy Central in the USA (produced by Lorne Michaels); shared a 1995 Emmy nomination for Outstanding Writing in a Variety or Music Program
:
Served as writer-actor-director for several short films aired on "Saturday Night Live"
1995:
Released album, "Shame-Based Man"
1996:
Co-scripted and appeared in the feature "The Kids in the Hall BRAIN CANDY"; Foley (only "Kid" not receiving screenplay credit) broke with the rest of the troupe, refusing to appear in drag
1998:
Portrayed talk show host Rex Reilly in "Twitch City" (CBC), described as "'The Odd Couple' on acid and 'Friends' from Hell"; series starred its creator Don McKellar; six original episodes (directed by Bruce McDonald) aired in 1998 and 1999, with seven additional episodes scheduled to air in 2000
1998:
Feature directorial debut, "Dog Park"; also scripted
1999:
Played Watergate reporter Carl Bernstein to Will Farrell's Bob Woodward in the Andrew Fleming comedy "Dick"; "Kids" mate Foley portrayed Bob Haldeman
1999:
Directed Farrell in "Superstar", starring Molly Shannon
2002:
Helmed the comedy "Stealing Harvard"
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Education

Mount Royal College: Calgary , Alberta -

Notes

"I suppose we're the worst careerists and businessmen in the world. The easy thing would have been to do a big sketch film. There was some gentle pressure for us to do that, and we responded by taking the least successful characters from our show, telling a long story with them and making the comedy even more satirical. We're not smart, but we're proud." --Bruce McCulloch, quoted in Los Angeles Times, April 7, 1996.

About the inspiration for "Dog Park": "Then three years ago I discovered dog parks. The Kids in the Hall film 'Brain Candy' had just opened, or 'not opened,' as is current Hollywood vernacular. So I caged my dog. We went to L.A. I rented a house. I rented a couch. It was 'paper' colored, but not when we got through with it. Since I was newly single, Kelsey and I would sit on the couch a lot.

"In fact, my only connection with the world was twice a day when I took Kelsey out to the dog park. People came from all over, 'packing plastic'--carrying little plastic bags--and sipping coffee out of stainless steel mugs.

"'I haven't seen you before,' said a could-be sweet, could-be-crazy girl.

"'No,' I mumbled, 'it's our first time.'

"'Who are you with?' she asked.

"'Kelsey.'

"'Oh, she's so bouncy! Can I give her a treat?'

"'No,' I said, 'she's got a bad tummy. She was in a cage for a long time recently.'

"Confused, the girl smiled and walked off."

"Back at my house, I sat on my rented couch and phoned my only-on-the-phone friend. He told me 'Can I give your dog a treat?' was the dog-park equivalent of 'Can I buy you a drink?' I hung up and started thinking about all the people at the dog park and the dogs that help them meet each other. I thought about all the things those dogs must have seen: hair-pulling sex, a pillow being vacuumed after a lover leaves, a last-chance dinner that ends early.

"And I realized that dog parks are for our time. There are no velvet ropes. You don't use your own name, only dogs' names. You don't talk about you but about little Kelsey or Cody. You connect by association ... " --McCulloch to Details, October 1999.

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