The 1983 American comedy-drama film “Max Dugan Returns” has a sad irony for actor Matthew Broderick who played his first film role in this film as the character Michael McPhee. This is because, while the film deals with the impending death of the titular character Max Dugan (Played by Jason Robards), the real-life father of Matthew Broderick (whose birthname is James Joseph Broderick), noted character actor James Broderick died November 1, 1982 around the time of the making of this film.
Even more ironic, co-star Robards, who knew James and was a friend, helped Matthew through his grief over the loss of his father.
So, in many ways, the film became an unintentional reflection of Broderick’s real life journey. Robards played Broderick’s grandfather on-screen…and it seems became a source of wisdom for him off-screen. Guess their roles could be seen as some of their most personal.