Now You Know: The Inspiration For Ron Burgundy Was Detroit Anchorman Mort Crim
As the hype mounts for the Dec. 18 opening of "Anchoman 2," actor Will Ferrell has been conducting a one-man media blitz to discuss -- and, in one case, to play -- his character, Ron Burgundy.
Mark Brush of Michigan Radio reports Ferrell has disclosed that the inspiration for Burgundy was none other than longtime Detroit anchorman Mort Crim of WDIV-TV.
Ferrell explained to The New York Times how the idea came to him (before he was in Detroit, Mort Crim anchored newscasts in Philadelphia):
The inspiration for the original “Anchorman” came one evening more than a decade ago when Mr. Ferrell was watching a television documentary about Jessica Savitch, one of the first women to anchor news telecasts. He was struck by a former co-anchor of hers in Philadelphia, who delivered his reminiscences in a silky baritone. “He literally said the line: ‘You have to remember, back then I was a real male chauvinist pig. I was not nice to her.’ ”
Philadelphia Magazine's Victor Fiorillo reports that 'silky baritone' came from Mort Crim, Brush writes.
Fiorillo got in touch with Crim, 78, at his Florida home and asked if he had taken offense to the character.
"I didn’t take any offense to it," Crim said. "I have been parodied before in other situations in my public life."