Home Alone | Image: Twentieth Century Fox
The linked article is an extensive and informative oral history of Home Alone, written for Chicago magazine by James Hughes, son of 80s movie maestro John Hughes. This 25th anniversary endeavor includes interviews with those involved with the project including Raja Gosnell, the film's editor, Joe Roth, chairman of Twentieth Century Fox at the time of filming, cast members Daniel Stern and Catherine O'Hara and director Chris Columbus.
Chris Columbus reveals that the only reason he ended up working on the project was to get away from another in which he was supposed to work with notorious jerk Chevy Chase. Columbus writes,
"In 1989, I directed Heartbreak Hotel, and it was a disaster. It opened on a Friday, and by Wednesday it was only playing at two o’clock in the afternoon. Around that time, John Hughes sent me the script for Christmas Vacation. I love Christmas, so to do a Christmas comedy had been a dream.
I went out to dinner with Chevy Chase [the movie’s star]. To be completely honest, Chevy treated me like dirt. But I stuck it out and even went as far as to shoot second unit [collecting establishing shots and special sequences, usually without principal actors]. Some of my shots of downtown Chicago are still in the movie.
Then I had another meeting with Chevy, and it was worse. I called John [who was producing the film] and said, 'There’s no way I can do this movie. I know I need to work, but I can’t do it with this guy.' John was very understanding. About two weeks later, I got two scripts at my in-laws’ house in River Forest. One was Home Alone, with a note from John asking if I wanted to direct. I thought, Wow, this guy is really supporting me when no one else in Hollywood was going to. John was my savior."