Contributing Editor, 1971-76, 1978-80?, 1986-?
One of NatLamp‘s most popular contributors, Chris Miller, was a bright ex-advertising copywriter and had also been a contributor to Al Goldstein’s Screw magazine before writing for the Lampoon.
Miller wrote almost exclusively in the short story form. His stories were often as explicitly sexual as they were funny–and they were extremely funny. Sexual frustration and drug-induced paranoid fantasies were common themes. His more bizarre stories often entered the realm of science fiction of the Twilight Zone variety.
Starting with “Caked Joy Rag” in the July 1971 (Pornography) issue, his stories appeared in about every issue or two thereafter with such classics as “Groin Larceny,” “Stacked Like Me,” “Pipe Dream,” “On the Night Before the Last Day They Filmed Star Trek,” “Come for Your Life,” and on and on.
Miller also appeared frequently in “Foto Funnies,” the one-page gags which gave the NatLamp staffers a chance to be seen by the readers. Not surprisingly, those featuring Miller usually showed him in bed with a woman.
In 1974, Miller began a series of stories based on his fraternity days (which he wrote about in the 2006 book The Real Animal House), beginning with “The Night of the Seven Fires.” Later, these stories would form the core of National Lampoon‘s first and most successful movie, Animal House, which Miller co-wrote with Doug Kenney and Harold Ramis.
Miller continued to write off and on for the magazine until at least 1986 or so. In addition to Animal House, Miller has written screenplays for Club Paradise (1986) and Multiplicity (1996), directed by Harold Ramis. The main character in Multiplicity is said to be based on Doug Kenney.
See also my interview with Chris from 2006.
Other works by Chris Miller
The Real Animal House: The Awesomely Depraved Saga of the Fraternity That Inspired the Movie
National Lampoon’s Animal House
Screenplay by Doug Kenney, Chris Miller, & Harold Ramis