Meatballs is a 1979 Canadian comedy film directed by Ivan Reitman. It is noted for Bill Murray's first film appearance in a starring role and for launching Reitman into a distinguished career of financially successful comedies including Stripes (1981) and Ghostbusters (1984), both starring Murray. The film also introduced child actor Chris Makepeace in the role of Rudy Gerner. It was followed by several sequels, of which only Meatballs III: Summer Job (1986) had any connection to the original.
- According to the DVD commentary, scenes of the first day of camp were the first day of actual shooting for Bill Murray. He was signed to do the film at the last minute because of his commitment to Saturday Night Live. His outfit, the Hawaiian shirt and red shorts, were the clothes he was wearing when he showed up on set.
- Harold Ramis said that Reitman did not know for certain whether Murray would be in the movie until he showed up for the first day of filming.