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Family Ties: Ben and Jerry Stiller, Christine Taylor and Anne Meara
Why it worked: Even though Ben had years of acting and directing experience behind him (as well as his own short-lived TV show), "Zoolander" wasn't an obvious home run. His last directorial effort. "The Cable Guy," had died a miserable death, despite the star power of Jim Carrey. It's no surprise, then, that he recruited his dad Jerry and mom Anne (of Stiller & Meara renown) to pitch in, and also cast his girlfriend-turned-wife Christine as the movie's love interest. Though Anne has a blink-and-miss her uncredited role, Jerry is Maury Ballstein, the agent of Stiller's clueless male model, Derek Zoolander. Running around in oversized sunglasses, gold chains and track suits, Jerry is loud, brash, and funny -- but his affection for his dim bulb of a client is obvious. Still, I'm guessing that wasn't really acting. He had reason to be proud of his son, though, as the end result was a sweet, sharp (at least far sharper than Derek) comedy about the already ridiculous fashion industry that served as a solid hit for Ben.
-Liane Bonin Starr