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The Brat Pack Is Back! Learn All About the ’80s Actors, Who Was in the Group, and What Happened to Them

Molly Ringwald, Rob Lowe, and more are back in the spotlight thanks to the upcoming documentary 'Brats'


Few movies impacted society like those made in the 1980s thanks to the infamous group of actors labeled as the Brat Pack. Viewers are in for a treat, decades later, thanks to the upcoming documentary, Brats, set to bring the pack’s cinematic contributions, livelihoods, and relationships back to the screen. Before the documentary, though, there was just the Brat Pack. Keep reading to learn more about this unforgettable ‘80s clique, who was in the group, and what happened to them.

Who was in the Brat Pack?

The Brat Pack was a group made up of eight actors: Emilio Estevez, Anthony Michael Hall, Rob Lowe, Demi Moore, Andrew McCarthy, Judd Nelson, Molly Ringwald, and Ally Sheedy, many of whom often starred in films together. While multiple combinations of people from the Brat Pack appeared in movies throughout the decade, they were never filmed as an entire group. Some notable titles include The Breakfast Club, directed by John Hughes, and St. Elmo’s Fire directed by Joel Schumacher. 

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Where did the name Brat Pack come from?

The name Brat Pack is indeed a play on the Rat Pack, the label for entertainers such as Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, and Sammy Davis Jr. in the 1940s and ‘50s, but its origins also came from a 1985 issue of New York Magazine.

The cover featured McCarthy, Estevez, and Lowe with the headline: “Hollywood’s Brat Pack.” At the time of publication, the actors were 25 years old or younger and the nickname reflected their youth. 

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The Brat Pack members had tension between them 

Ally Sheedy and Molly Ringwald as part of the Brat Pack in the Breakfast Club

Not every member was mentioned in David Blum’s original New York Magazine article, but the ones that were felt betrayed by his depictions. Sheedy, Ringwald, and Hall were not named, but the moniker stuck regardless. 

Sheedy also said in Susannah Gora’s book You Couldn’t Ignore Me If You Tried: The Brat Pack, John Hughes, and Their Impact on a Generation that “the article just destroyed [the group]. I had felt truly a part of something, and [Blum] blew it to pieces.” Following that, some of the actors didn’t want to be seen in public together anymore, and others including Hall and Nelson claimed that the Brat Pack never even existed. 

‘Brats’ documentary synopsis, release date, and reactions 

The Brat Pack is blessing screens again this summer, but there’s one catch: this time they’re not playing a role. Directed by pack member McCarthy, Brats shares the story of the actual actors behind their well-known films. It also dives into the group’s thoughts on the nickname, and how they all became part of a cultural phenomenon. So far, Moore, Lowe, Estevez, and Sheedy are all slated to be part of the reunion. You can watch the documentary on June 13 on Hulu. 

For more 1980s content, click through these links!

Back to the Future’: 10 Shocking Behind-the-Scenes Facts About the Classic Time Travel Adventure

Sade: 8 Captivating Facts About the Enigmatic Queen of Sensual ’80s Music

‘The Karate Kid’ Turns 40 This Year — See the Cast Then and Now

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