The astounding cameos in Robin Williams’ ‘Hook’
(Credit: Netflix)

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The astounding cameos in Robin Williams' 'Hook'

Rightly regarded as one of the greatest children’s movies ever made, Robin Williams‘ Peter pan story, Hook will go down in history as some of his finest work. The movie serves as a sequel to J.M. Barrie’s 1911 novel and concerns a grown-up Peter Pan – played by the great Robin Williams – who has forgotten his childhood. He now goes by the name of Peter Banning and is a successful lawyer. However, his life is disrupted when Captain Hook (Dustin Hoffman) kidnaps his two children, and he must travel to Neverland to save them.

Alongside Williams and Hoffman, Julia Roberts, Bob Hoskins, and Maggie Smith join the fold. There is even a brilliant cameo in the film for everyone’s favourite singing drummer, Phil Collins. When Hook kidnaps Peter Banning’s children, a British police officer arrives to investigate with a familiar face and voice: it is, of course, the former Genesis drummer Collins.

Remembering his brief role in the film, Collins recalled being shaken with nerves when he turned up on the set and found that his lines had been rewritten. In his awfully-titled memoir Not Dead Yet, Collins writes: “I don’t want to mess this up, not for [Robin Williams] and certainly not for Spielberg.” Hilariously, Dustin Hoffman suggested that Collins actually read fewer lines than he’d originally been penned in for, and the shorter take was eventually used in the final cut.

However, Collins was not the only music icon to have joined the cast of Spielberg’s film. David Crosby also made a cameo as one of the pirates, in which he pronounces: “Long live Hook!” However, his enthusiasm comes to an abrupt end towards the finale when he is kicked in the bollocks by a young child.

Discussing his role, Crosby said: “I’ve been a pirate all my life, but this was the first time I was allowed to wear the clothes. As a kid, I wanted to be an actor. But then I found out I could get laid right away by going and singing in coffeehouses. I’m in the fortunate position of having a day job, so I can afford to wait around for parts.”

Another famous rocker also pops up for a brief appearance in the film. Jimmy Buffett, like Crosby, plays a pirate, but this one actually attempts to steal Peter Pan’s Armani shoes. As for famous faces outside of the music industry, there is also a minor role for Glenn Close, as a pirate who is banished to the ‘Boo Box’ for causing trouble.

Even Star Wars icons George Lucas and Carrie Fisher make cameos. They play a couple who share a kiss on a bridge while Tinkerbell’s fairy dust falls over them rather elegantly. Gwyneth Paltrow also makes only her second on-screen role as a younger version of Wendy, who meets Peter Pan for the first time. Hook is simply crawling with stars bow to stern, port to starboard.