- Married his high school sweetheart at age 20.
- Started out writing freelance jokes for professional comedians.
- After the success of National Lampoon's Animal House (1978), he was offered screenwriting work because of his affiliation as a writer with National Lampoon magazine.
- His directorial debut, Sixteen Candles (1984), crowned him the king of teen angst films. In the next three years, he released five more coming-of-age adolescent classics: The Breakfast Club (1985), Weird Science (1985), Pretty in Pink (1986), Ferris Bueller's Day Off (1986) and Some Kind of Wonderful (1987).
- Was so impressed with Macaulay Culkin's performance in Uncle Buck (1989) that he wrote Home Alone (1990) for the young actor.
- Curly Sue (1991) became the last film he directed, but he continued to write and contribute stories to such films as Dennis the Menace (1993), Flubber (1997) and Maid in Manhattan (2002), sometimes using a pseudonym.
- Spent his final years away from Hollywood on his farm.
- John Hughes — Son
- Nancy Ludwig Hughes — Wife
- James Hughes — Son
- Attended University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ
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