It’s Father’s Day this weekend, and to celebrate dads everywhere, we pay tribute to the men who inspire us the most – whether they be your father or a dad that you know that does a good job.
The man of the family, the role model, daddy’s girl, the real-life hero, the best friend, the provider, the guy who will bail you out in any situation or just a regular joe dad doing his best – no matter what you call him, we applaud their fatherhood through these famous on-screen dads.
The Little Girl’s Daddy: George Banks, Father Of The Bride
“Finally the big day arrived. The day I’ve been dreading for the past six months… well actually, for the past 22 years,” narrated George Banks on his only daughter’s wedding day. In this film, we see George learning to let go of his protectiveness and his authority over his little girl. Watching his daughter grow up, get engaged and get married meant that he had to accept the fact that he was no longer the man in her life. Don’t worry, George. Daddy’s little girls will always be daddy’s little girls, and you will always be one of the most important men in her life.
The “Cool” Dad: Phil Dunphy, Modern Family
In the multi-award-winning sitcom Modern Family, Phil Dunphy is the warm and dedicated but awkward and embarrassing father who constantly tries to find ways to bond with his three children. He considers himself a “cool” dad and pioneered the “peerenting” method, which involves talking like a peer but acting like a parent. His attempts to appeal to and connect with his popular teenage daughter, his intelligent other daughter and his goofy son may often end in disaster, but in the end, they appreciate him for his earnest and relentless mission to be closer to his kids. So do we!
The Funny Dad: Bill Cosby, The Cosby Show
Anyone who had grown up to or have ever watched this sitcom would agree that the eccentric and jazzy Cliff Huxtable is the funniest and most charming dad around.
Always engaging his kids in silly games and using a strong sense of humor to communicate with them, Cliff is nonetheless a very dedicated and kind-hearted father and husband, even if he jokes constantly about getting his grown kids to finally move out of the house!
The Optimistic Dad: Guido Orefice, Life Is Beautiful
In this heart-wrenching but beautiful film, Guido Orefice is a Jewish man battling for his family’s survival and sanity in a concentration camp during WWII. But the loving, spirited and funny Guido holds on to his optimism and goes to elaborate lengths to keep his young son from realizing the painful truth of their situation. Guido convinces him that they are in a contest to win an armored tank; turning every struggle they face in the camp into a participation rule and a game, and never letting positivity falter from his voice and face… all for the sake of giving his son a childhood.
The Determined Dad: Chris Gardner, The Pursuit Of Happyness
The true-life story of Chris Gardner is an inspiration. From being suddenly single and having custody of his son, to losing his job and his money, Chris struggles to provide for the two of them. Things worsen as they become homeless, at one point having to stay in a bathroom at a subway station. But Chris’s determination to provide for his son takes him from one job to another, facing continuous setbacks but never giving up. Chris Garner is now an owner of a multi-million dollar brokerage firm, and it’s safe to say that he is indeed providing for his family extremely well!
The Understanding Dad: Andre, My Father The Hero
When you’re a divorced man trying hard not to be estranged from your only child, you’ll do just about anything to win her favor. Andre takes his teenage daughter Nicole on an island vacation, where she falls for a local boy. Desperate to appear older and grab the local’s attention, she lies about Andre being her boyfriend. At first, Andre is oblivious, but when the lie spreads and evolves into bizarre presumptions by the local community, he finds out. But as Andre himself is desperate to make Nicole happy, he decides to play along! As disturbing as that may sound, Andre and Nicole’s journey was hilarious yet moving to watch – forming one of the best father-daughter relationships on screen!
The Heroic Dad: Dick Hoyt – Real Life!
Dick Hoyt makes the cut because we first saw him in a video online. Dick and his son Rick compete in marathons and triathlons across the USA, but what makes them extraordinary is that Rick suffers from cerebral palsy, which means that Dick has been pushing his son in a wheelchair in every run they have entered.
It all began in 1977, when, after their first benefit run, Rick told his father, “Dad, when I’m running, it feels like I’m not handicapped.” Today, Team Hoyt has completed over 1,000 marathons and triathlons, including Ironman competitions. When asked, Rick said his only wish was “for my dad to sit in the chair and I would push him for once.” We applaud Dick Hoyt for his courage, his determination and his spirit as a father to Rick and as a role model to us all. Watch their remarkable journey in the video below!
Who are your favorite on-screen or famous dads? What was the best thing about your dad, or, if you’re a father yourself – the best thing about fatherhood? We’d like to know below.