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10 Awesome On-Screen Duos

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10 Awesome On-Screen Duos

Some things just go together, i.e., peanut butter and jelly, peas and carrots, milk and cereal.  There are actors who are cast in a television show or film together and then there are the people on this list; the difference being that the people on this list possess a spell binding chemistry that simply cannot be explained.  When this type of pairing happens, it’s magical to say the least. On screen chemistry cannot be scripted, it happens organically.  When it does not happen, the audience knows.  Fortunately, for this bunch that is not the case.  These dynamic duos co-exist beautifully on screen (and for a few of them, off screen as well).  These stellar twosomes are not connected by happenstance or coincidence.  Their collaborations are fate, destiny and divine intervention rolled into one.  Keep reading to learn more about some of the best matches in entertainment history.

10. Cheech and Chong (Various movies)

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In their first film, Up In Smoke (1978), Richard “Cheech” Marin and Tommy Chong set audiences ablaze with their marijuana induced sense of humor and morbid overuse of the word ‘man.’ In their comedic debut, Cheech and Chong meet by chance after Chong is scolded by his father to do something meaningful with his life.  Seemingly indifferent about the anger of his father, Chong packs a bag of his belongings and decides to hitchhike his way elsewhere.  Like a knight in shining armor, Cheech sees Chong and picks him up.  Just minutes into the car ride, the two discover that they have something in common, a love for smoking weed. This popular pair would go on to produce thirteen other films, eleven comedy albums and numerous stand up routines around the country.  Achieving a cult like following among potheads everywhere, these two were crowned the Kings of Weed at their Comedy Central Roast Special which took place in 2008.

9. Lucille Ball & Desi Arnaz (I Love Lucy, The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour & Real Life)

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He was a Cuban musician and she was an up and coming comedienne and actress.  They met in 1940 on the set of a play and married six months later.  Eight years following their whirlwind marriage, Ball was offered the opportunity to play the leading lady in a television show we would come to know as I Love Lucy.  She agreed to take the roll on the condition that her off screen husband be cast as her on screen husband.  Sources close to the couple say that she did so in an attempt to patch some holes in her marriage to Arnaz.  With him constantly traveling with his band and her working to further her acting career, the two did not see each other much.  There were also rumors that Arnaz did quite a bit of drinking and philandering throughout their marriage. Regardless of her original intentions,  Lucy’s idea to cast Arnaz as Ricky Ricardo was genius!  I Love Lucy aired in 1951 and had a highly successful run; it was the most watched television show in the United States for the first four seasons of it’s existence.  When the show ended in 1957, the two created a variety show, The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour, which aired until 1960.  Her fiery red hair paled in comparison to her spitfire personality; his charming good looks and sultry accent warmed the hearts of millions of viewers.  In spite of their tumultuous personal relationship, the couple’s on screen chemistry was uncanny.

8. Mike Myers and Dana Carvey (Wayne’s World movies)

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Wayne’s World (1992) and Wayne’s World 2 (1993) were adapted from the popular skit on Saturday Night Live.  Centered around two teenagers who created a television public access show, Wayne and Garth flawlessly captured the zeitgeist of all things 90’s.  Spawning phrases like “…Not!” and “That’s what she said” (which is still hugely popular more than 20 years later), the Wayne’s World films were cult classics.  In the first movie, which raked in $121.6 million in box office sales, Wayne and Garth’s friendship is tested when their show is picked up by a major television station.  Initially they are offered an excellent opportunity; sponsorship for the show and of course more visibility. However, as their show gains more popularity, the two discover that the television station executive, played by Rob Lowe, only wants the rights to the show’s name and does not truly have an interest in whether or not Wayne and Garth stay on the show as hosts.  In the sequel, the pair organize a concert of epic proportions, Waynestock, and deal with troublesome twists and turns in their romantic pursuits.  Wayne’s World 2 was not as well received as it’s predecessor, only grossing $48 million at the box office.  It also received mixed reviews with critics.

7. Susan Sarandon & Geena Davis (Thelma & Louise)

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Bored with their mundane day-to-day activities, these best friends head off into the sunset in a car that became as legendary as their unwavering bond: a sky blue 1966 Thunderbird.  While on their trip, which was supposed to be a quick weekend getaway, Thelma and Louise run into a bit of trouble at a bar when a local vagrant decides he wants to sleep with Thelma-against her will.  Stopping at nothing to protect her best friend, Louise fires one fatal shot to the man’s head.  In the remainder of the movie, Thelma goes on to rob a small gas station.  After a mini crime spree, the ladies find themselves on the run from the law.  In spite of their ill fated “vacation,” Thelma and Louise’s friendship remained in tact.  Critics and audiences alike enjoyed the film; it made over $45 million at the box office.

6. Owen Wilson & Vince Vaughn (Various Movies)

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Captivating audiences with their bromance for over a decade now, these two are one of today’s most popular comedic duos.  Whether they are crashing weddings to hook up with chicks or trying to reinvent themselves by applying for an internship at Google, Vaughn and Wilson are a comedic force to be reckoned with.  Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson have been “cast in the same circles” for years; they appeared in Zoolander (2001) and Starsky and Hutch (2004).  However they were both featured in starring roles in Wedding Crashers (2005) and The Internship (2013).  Their quick witted dialogue and sometimes hilariously awkward experiences have solidified their positions in comedic history.   With hugely successful films under their belt these two are not only funny, they are smart.  Wedding Crashers grossed over $285 million at the box office-the movie’s budget was $40 million.  The Internship had a $58 million dollar budget and managed to bring in roughly $92 million while in theaters.  While these two often portray dimwits in their films,  it’s obvious that they are modern day comedic giants who know their target audience and consistently give them what they want!

5. Penny Marshall and Cindy Williams (Laverne & Shirley)

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In this late 1970’s Happy Days spin-off, Laverne and Shirley are best friends, roommates and colleagues. Laverne is a fast talking native of New York.  She’s rough around the edges and a bit of a hothead. Shirley on the other hand is more soft spoken, polite and logical. She tends calm Laverne’s quick temper and serves as the voice of reason on the show. This duo worked well because Laverne and Shirley are opposites but their personalities compliment each other. Although the ladies kept viewers laughing for years, a bit of drama essentially caused the end of the hit show. After finding out that she was pregnant with her first child, Cindy Williams, who portrayed Shirley, made more than a few high maintenance demands of the production staff. When said demands were refused, Williams stopped showing up to the set and slapped the production company with a $20 million lawsuit.  The suit was settled out of court and Williams was released from her contract.  The show’s writers cleverly edited her out of the final season (by way of a whirlwind romance and marriage to an Army medic who was stationed overseas), which was only two episodes young at the time of her departure. Laverne appeared Shirley-less in the show’s final season.  In spite of Shirley’s absence, the show maintained steady ratings.  After eight seasons, the popular sitcom aired it’s last episode in May of 1983.

4. John Travolta and Olivia Newton John (Grease)

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Set in the 1950’s, released in 1978, this hit musical film told the story of two high schoolers, Danny Zuko and Sandy Olsson, who met and fell in love during the summer. Sandy’s family is set to return to Australia before the school year begins, leaving the two afraid that they will never see each other again. As it turns out, Sandy’s parents decide not to go back to Australia.  Ironically, Sandy unknowingly enrolls in the same high school that Danny attends. The two end up talking to their respective groups of friends about their summer romance, never mentioning each others’ names.  Eventually, Danny’s friends figure out that his summer love, Sandy is a student at their school. In storybook fashion, the movie ends with Sandy and Danny riding off into the sunset together in the Greased Lightning car.  These teenage lovebirds sang to the tune of nearly $395 million in box office sales, making Grease the top grossing movie of 1978.  Becoming a  landmark in Hollywood history isn’t so bad either.

3. Mel Gibson and Danny Glover (Lethal Weapon movies)

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This unlikely partnership formed between two cops in Los Angeles in the first Lethal Weapon movie which premiered in 1987. Riggs and Murtaugh essentially had nothing in common. Roger Murtaugh was a sensible seasoned veteran cop who was not far from his retirement while Martin Riggs, still reeling from the death of his wife in a car accident, was high strung and outright insane at times.  Although it seemed as if these two could never learn to like each other, let alone work together, they went on to develop a common interest in taking down a drug lord in the first film.  Riggs and Murtaugh won over audiences in three other Lethal Weapons films following the first. Each film of the series was widely successful, all grossing more than $100 million worldwide.

2. Robert DeNiro and Al Pacino (Various movies)

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Robert De Niro and Al Pacino are cinematic royalty in their own rights but when these two get together, phenomenal things happen.  Affectionately dubbed New York’s toughest sons, these two have had hugely successful careers.  De Niro’s first acting role was in a small and virtually unknown farce comedy, The Wedding Party in 1969.  Pacino’s first acting role was also in a small 1969 film, Me, Natalie.  The two went on to play mobster father and son duo, Vito and Michael Corleone, in The Godfather: Part 2 (1974).  They shared one brief scene in the 1995 crime thriller Heat in which De Niro portrays career criminal Neil McCauley. Pacino plays the cop who works to catch him, Lieutenant Vincent Hanna.  These Hollywood titans went on to co-star in another crime thriller, Righteous Kill, in 2008.  Between the two of them, they have garnered countless nominations and numerous Academy awards including awards for Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor.

1. Brad Pitt & Angelina Jolie (Mr. & Mrs. Smith & Real Life)

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If there were ever two people who were meant to be together, it’s these two.  Amidst Pitt‘s impending divorce from Jennifer Aniston, he admits that he fell in love with Jolie when they met on the set of their 2005 box office hit.  Both Pitt and Jolie had achieved great success in their individual careers before collaborating; Jolie had starred in the critically acclaimed biopic, Gia (1998), about the fallen supermodel, video game turned action films Lara Croft: Tomb Raider (2001) and it’s sequel Lara Croft: The Cradle of Life (2003).  Pitt had starred in the 1992 film A River Runs Through It, Interview With the Vampire and Legends of the Fall both in 1994.  The film Mr. and Mrs. Smith, in which a husband and wife are contract killers who are assigned to kill each other, topped box office sales at over $478 million. Almost a decade and six children later, Brangelina have kept the public speculating on whether or not they have tied the knot.  Some reports say the couple had a secret ceremony last year while other sources say they may marry this summer around June, when Jolie will celebrate her 39th birthday.  As  public as their careers have been, the famous couple have been rather skilled at keeping the most intimate details of their relationship private.

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