In the movies, journalists are often depicted as crusading figures in search of the truth. They tend to be at their funniest when they are doing anything to get the story, whether that means going back in time o taking a whole bunch of drugs. Check out a few of our favorite funny reporters from some of our favorite movies below.
1. Aaron Altman, Broadcast News
In a memorable moment from James L. Brooks’ classic comedy, newswriter Aaron (Albert Brooks) finally gets a shot on-air and develops a case of flop sweat that rivals even Richard Nixon.
2. Phil Connors, Groundhog Day
Weatherman Phil Connors’ sheer hatred of his assignment reporting on Punxsutawney Phil shines through in his interactions with his crew and the local townspeople. (It even bleeds into his on-air segments.) He might seem like a primadonna, but what else can you do when you have to report the exact same puff-piece story every day on an endless loop?
3. Darius Britt, Safety Not Guaranteed
Darius (Aubrey Plaza) is part of the team at Seattle Magazine who investigate a man who places a classified ad asking for someone to join him on his trip back in time. In the clip above, we see that she will do anything to keep track of her sources — even if that means stalking them in the grocery store.
4. Raoul Duke, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
We didn’t realize drugs were such an essential part of the journalistic process. But when you’re a character derived from a novel by author/reporter Hunter S. Thompson, mescaline is as important to your process as a laptop and coffee.
5. Josie Geller, Never Been Kissed
This movie likely inspired a bevy of reporters to go undercover in high schools to get the scoop on what “the kids” today are up to. So kids, if you suddenly have a new classmate who looks like they’re pushing 30, they’re probably on assignment.
6. Sue Charlton, Crocodile Dundee
Ah, the days when newspapers would pay for their reporters to fly halfway across the world to follow around some random dude with a giant knife. The ’80s, folks.
7. Gwen Pearson, National Lampoon’s Van Wilder
Gwen is a reporter for her college paper tasked with following around the most popular guy on campus. We imagine her adventures with Van Wilder led Gwen to a strong career in puff celebrity journalism.
8. Steve Zissou and Jane Winslett-Richardson, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou
Wes Anderson’s film gave us two truth-seekers — a documentarian and a reporter — disputing the nature of reality. Also, big ups to Bill Murray for making this list twice.
9. Babe Bennett, Mr. Deeds
While misrepresenting yourself is a big reporting no-no, as Inside Access reporter Babe Bennett does here, there’s nothing like seeing a “mugger” get kicked in the head. And with a name like Babe Bennett, really her only career option is in tabloid journalism.
10. Ron Burgundy, Anchorman
The great Ron Burgundy is an example of an anchorman placing absolute trust in the collaborative nature of journalism.