Bob Barker insisted on doing his own stunts in Happy Gilmore

M.T.V. MOVIE AWARDS IN BURBANK (Photo by Frank Trapper/Corbis via Getty Images)
M.T.V. MOVIE AWARDS IN BURBANK (Photo by Frank Trapper/Corbis via Getty Images) /

Beloved game show icon Bob Barker recently passed away at the age of 99 on Saturday, August 26, 2023.

Barker’s game show career started in 1956 when he began hosting the NBC series Truth or Consequences, but his big break came in 1972 when he signed on to become the host of The Price is Right.

His dapper appearance and his friendly personality helped make the CBS game show a success. After 35 years of hosting, Barker decided to retire in 2007, and Drew Carey later took over as the new host.

Aside from his game show hosting gigs, Barker guest-starred in several films and TV series. One of his most memorable cameos was in the 1996 Adam Sandler-led comedy film Happy Gilmore.

Barker, who plays himself, teams with Sandler’s character Happy for a charity golf tournament. Tension erupts as the men fall into last place in the tournament. The two exchange words before things turn physical with Barker coming out the winner in their fight.

Bob Barker did all his stunts for Happy Gilmore fight scene

Barker and Sandler’s fight in Happy Gilmore is one of the greatest scenes in movie history. Sandler and director Dennis Dugan were ecstatic that the game show host agreed to the cameo. They were also surprised at Barker’s dedication to his performance.

Dugan was going to have a stunt double fill in for Barker, but the host refused. Barker, who was 72 at the time, insisted on doing his own stunts. In a 2013 interview with CBS, Barker recalled his performance in the film.

"“The director came in and he said, ‘Bob, don’t worry about the fight.’ He said, I have a stunt man he’ll do the fight scene. I said, ‘Wait a minute…I know how to fight.’ I said, ‘I want to do the fight scenes. I want to win the fight.He said, ‘Alright.” So I did it.”"

Although Barker and Sandler were enemies onscreen, in real life the two got along great. After news of Barker’s death was confirmed, Sandler paid tribute to his co-star in a social media post.

"“The man. The myth. The best. Such a sweet funny guy to hang out with. Loved talking to him. Loved laughing with him. Loved him kicking the crap out of me”"

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