Perhaps it is the way a phrase is spoken or written or the way it evokes emotion, but when words catch our attention enough to repeat them over and over, this is how a famous quote is born. Sometimes famous quotes were never intended for fame or inspiration when first spoken or written. In fact, it is often the least likely of phrases that are remembered forever. How a famous quote is made famous is unpredictable, but there are those who’s words will become more famous than they are.
Take the treasured film Forrest Gump for instance. However fabricated the story, Forrest’s simple words that ended up slated on bumper stickers and T-shirts happened unexpectedly and all the while, once the film had been digested by enough movie-goers, the famous quotes “Life is like a box of chocolates” and “Run Forest! Run!” were later uttered by multitudes of people in reality.
Movies have historically bred famous quotes. From The Terminator’s solemn vow “I’ll be back” to Scarlett O’Hara’s triumphant cry “As God is my witness I’ll never be hungry again”, Hollywood scripts have churned out some of the most famous quotes of all. These phrases though are given strength by the fictional acting that propels them and can not always be foreseen until an actor or actress brings them to life.
Authors such as Mark Twain and Erma Bombeck are also given due credit for famous quotes of another nature. In Erma Bombeck’s case, it was simply pure, unconstrained humor that makes so much of what she wrote and said so memorable. Entire calendars and board games have been developed on the premise of authors’ famous quotes and a person doesn’t necessarily have to be well versed in literature to recognize a writer’s wit, intelligence, or thoughtful insight as a famous quote.
The political arena is another source of historic and modern day famous quotes. Historically, Presidential speeches have yielded the most famous quotes. Think Lincoln, Kennedy, and Reagan. However, due to the popularity of poking fun at those in the political spotlight, Presidents today can bet they’ll be remembered for far less intelligent, but none the less famous, quotes of their own.
It isn’t always famous people who create a famous quote. If you can be inspirational enough, funny enough, or maybe even just plain dumb enough, attach a signature line to your emails and see if it perpetuates by miracle of “the internets”, I mean internet.