'Home Alone 2' director Chris Columbus reveals that Donald Trump asked for a cameo in exchange for the use of his hotel.
Donald Trump utilized one of his favorite negotiating tactics, the quid pro quo, to get himself a cameo in Home Alone 2.
In celebration of Home Alone's 30th anniversary, director Chris Columbus revealed some behind-the-scenes secrets in a new interview with Business Insider. Among the topics discussed was the 45th president's cameo in the beloved holiday staple's follow-up, 1992's Home Alone 2: Lost in New York.
As the title teases, the sequel finds Kevin McCallister alone in the Big Apple after a mixup with his family at the airport. He decides to explore the town while he's there and checks himself into The Plaza Hotel with his father's credit card.
"Like most locations in New York City, you just pay a fee, and you are allowed to shoot in that location," Columbus told Business Insider. "We approached The Plaza Hotel, which Trump owned at the time, because we wanted to shoot in the lobby. We couldn't rebuild The Plaza on a soundstage."
The former president utilized the art of the deal to get something for himself out of the arrangement. "Trump said OK. We paid the fee, but he also said, 'The only way you can use the Plaza is if I'm in the movie.' So we agreed to put him in the movie," Columbus explained.
Trump appears in the movie for a blink-and-you'll-miss-it cameo in which he gives Kevin directions to the hotel's lobby (see above).
Columbus seemed to suggest he considered scrapping the moment while editing the film, but, in what was perhaps an early sign of Trump's surprising popularity, audiences ate up the scene.
"When we screened it for the first time, the oddest thing happened: People cheered when Trump showed up on-screen," the director recalled. "So I said to my editor, 'Leave him in the movie. It's a moment for the audience.' But he did bully his way into the movie."
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