Actor Danny DeVito is most commonly recognised for his roles in classic films such as One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, Matilda and Big Fish. After initially making his name in the TV show Taxi, which aired during the early 1980s, Devito dedicated more time and effort toward building his film career on the big screen.
Pushing ahead, DeVito then made appearances in the comedy-drama Terms of Endearment as Vernon Dalhart, a role which was met with immediate success. DeVito also put together a wildly popular performance in Tim Burton’s fantasy comic adaptation Batman Returns. DeVito played the deformed but dedicated villain, The Penguin, in a performance that earned acclaim among fans and critics alike.
DeVito’s work is mainly characterised through comedic roles, most notably with Get Shorty, a project that was directed by Barry Sonnenfeld. The actor has also performed in successful animations such as Hercules and The Lorax. However, Devito doesn’t only appear in comical film and TV roles. In 1985, the actor took up a spot in the music video for Billy Ocean’s track ‘When The Going Gets Tough’, a position in which he performed a solo on the sax.
Not only this, but DeVito made an appearance in another video of a music industry icon. ‘Wear My Hat’ is a song by English drummer Phil Collins. It’s the fifth single on his 1996 album ‘Dance into the Light’, peaking at number 43 on the UK Singles Chart.
As part of the album, ‘Wear My Hat’ offers a blend of pop and rock, with Collins being inspired to write more guitar-based songs following the growing influence of the burgeoning Britpop movement. When asked about the song and music video’s meaning, Collins said in an interview that he orchestrates both to represent the pressures of fame and how some fans grow an attachment to their favourite stars.
DeVito’s appearance is a hook in executing this meaning. He runs out from the bushes of a hotel to catch up to Collins as he steps into a limo. With a video camera in one hand and a paper to be signed in the other, he ignores Collins’ rejection and steps into the limo with the musician. After some more back and forth about getting the autograph, DeVito is eventually tossed out of the car. Shortly after, he gets back to his feet and rearranges his hat as the vehicle speeds off. The entire cameo works as both representing meaning and providing some effective comedy, as fans will immediately recognise and love DeVito’s cameo.
See the clip, below.