As an avid blues fan, he hosted a nationally syndicated radio show "House of Blues" as his The Blues Brothers (1980) character Elwood Blues.
A police buff, he rides an Ontario Provincial Police motorcycle, collects police badges, sometimes rides shotgun with detectives in squad cars, and owns a business in partnership with several Toronto police officers.
Was good friends with John Belushi.
Is very interested in the supernatural and has an extensive collection of books on the subject.
His grandfather was a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
Was once engaged to Carrie Fisher.
Daughters with Donna Dixon: Danielle Alexandra (Danielle Aykroyd) (born November 18, 1989), Belle Kingston (born June 9, 1993), and Stella Irene August (April 5, 1998, weighing 6 lb at birth).
Worked as a mail sorter for Canada's national postal service before he became an actor.
Older brother of Peter Aykroyd. Like Peter, an alumnus of the Second City comedy troupe in Toronto.
He is a Roman Catholic, and is of English, Irish/Scottish, Dutch, French, and French-Canadian ancestry. On his father's side, he can trace his ancestry to the 15th century.
Is a victim of syndactylism, a birth defect where several digits are fused together. In Mr. Mike's Mondo Video (1979), he takes his shoes and socks off on-screen, to reveal this anomaly.
Co-owns House of Blues with friend Isaac Tigrett
On his passport, he lists his occupation as "Writer".
Has played harmonica since he was 17 years old.
Holds an advisory commission with the Police Department in Payne City, Georgia.
Once helped to subdue a drunk and disorderly passenger on a Montreal-to-Los Angeles flight.
Was offered the role of "D-Day" in National Lampoon's Animal House (1978), but turned it down due to his commitment to Saturday Night Live (1975). According to John Landis, Lorne Michaels threatened to fire Aykroyd if he took the role.
After working together on three films, Jamie Lee Curtis called him the best "screen kisser" who ever had a scene with her.
Though he has made numerous appearances on Saturday Night Live (1975) since leaving the show in 1979, he did not actually host it until the 2002-2003 season finale.
Has a "Blues Brothers" type band with John Belushi's brother, Jim Belushi.
Biography in: "Who's Who in Comedy" by Ronald L. Smith. pg. 32-33. New York: Facts on File, 1992. ISBN 0816023387
Proposed to Donna Dixon on Fran Drescher's porch. Drescher played a major role in getting them together from the start, after they all starred in Doctor Detroit (1983) together.
He was awarded the C.M. (Member of the Order of Canada) on October 21, 1998 and invested on April 14, 1999 from the Canadian Governor General in Sydenham, Ontario, Canada. From his roots in the Second City Comedy troupe to his role as one of the original Blues Brothers, he has become an entertainer of international stature. The stage, screen and television characters he has created have brought laughter to audiences around the world and his celebrity status has contributed to the success of many fund-raising events in Canada. His Alma mater, Carleton University in Ottawa, as well as arts, health and youth programs in Kingston have benefited from his involvement.
He met John Belushi in a Chicago speakeasy that was a favorite night spot of his and put on a blues record to play in the background while he and Belushi discussed the possibility of Aykroyd joining Saturday Night Live (1975). Not only did they hit it off and become good friends, Belushi became fascinated with the blues that was being played in the background because, to Aykroyd's surprise, the Chicago-born Belushi was primarily a fan of heavy metal. Aykroyd's familiarizing Belushi with blues music eventually led to them forming their popular "Blues Brothers" act, with a little input from then SNL music director Howard Shore.
Aykroyd and John Belushi were scheduled to present the first annual Best Visual Effects Oscar at the 1982 Academy Awards, but Belushi died weeks before the ceremony. Aykroyd presented the award alone, and stated from the podium: "My partner would have loved to have been here tonight to present this award, since he was a bit of a Visual Effect himself."
Was born with complete heterochromia; one eye is blue and one eye is green.
Came up with the character of Fred Garvin, Male Prostitute, when he lived with former Saturday Night Live (1975) writer Rosie Shuster. He first did it to entertain Rosie at home.
As a child in the early 1960s, he was diagnosed with Tourette's syndrome and Asperger syndrome. The symptoms had mostly subsided by the time he was 14.
He has owned or co-owned several bars and restaurants, including the Hard Rock Cafe in New York City and the House of Blues chain, the latter in partnership with John Belushi's widow Judy.
He has such a fascination with both police officers and criminals, one of the writers from the original Saturday Night Live (1975) said his ultimate fantasy was to commit a crime, then arrest himself for it.
Said that his original finished script for The Blues Brothers (1980) was over 300 pages long, roughly the size of a phone book. He even sent it to director John Landis in the guise of a phone book as a joke.
Ranked #14 on Tropopkin's Top 25 Most Intriguing People [Issue #100]
His original idea for Ghostbusters (1984) was set in the future, where an army of Ghostbusters fought hordes of ghosts.
He used to refer to the green Slimer ghost from Ghostbusters (1984) as "the ghost of John Belushi", as Slimer's party animal personality reminded him very much of his friend.
A scene was deleted from Steven Spielberg's 1941 (1979) where his character, Sgt. Frank Tree, met John Belushi's character, Wild Bill Kelso. The scene took place right after the tank was dropped into the water by the Japanese sub: Wild Bill was swimming out in the sub's direction just as Frank emerges from the top of the sinking tank, spots Wild Bill and they look at each other curiously, as if recognizing each other, a nod to their real life friendship. It was the only scene in the film where they interacted.
Supports MUFON, a UFO study group.
He's the first male regular cast member of Saturday Night Live (1975) to be nominated for an Academy Award. (Joan Cusack was the very first regular cast member of the show to be Oscar-nominated.)
His parents are Lorraine and Peter Aykroyd (not to be confused with his younger brother Peter Aykroyd). His father is best known as P.H. Aykroyd.
Many sources state that he was married in the 1970s to a woman named Maureen Lewis and had three sons (Mark, Lloyd and Oscar). However, the marriage never occurred and the three kids never existed. What happened was that before Aykroyd became famous, he filled out a questionnaire from the publishers of Who's Who and made up a phony biography complete with a wife and kids.
Is ambidextrous, as is evident by his writing left-handed during the examination scene in Spies Like Us (1985).
Is a big fan of The Beach Boys and his first piece of writing was a sketch that appeared in the documentary The Beach Boys: It's OK (1976).
Was very close with River Phoenix during the filming of Sneakers (1992). Aykroyd can even been seen wearing the shirt of Phoenix's band, Aleka's Attic, in the movie.
He and M. Night Shyamalan, are the only two men to direct themselves in performances that "won" them a Razzie Award for Worst Supporting Actor. Aykroyd "won" the award for, and also directed, the film Nothing But Trouble (1991).
He and Bill Murray resumed their "Ghostbusters" roles to visit a terminally ill child who was a fan of the film and wanted to meet them.
Owns Dan Aykroyd's Wine, an Ontario-based distillery/vineyard and plans to open up for the market in 2008. He got the idea for the name from Paul Newman.
Is a huge fan of the television series Dragnet (1951) and the series' star Jack Webb. So much so, that many of his characters are able to rapidly spit out technical information just as Webb did reciting laws and regulations as Sgt. Joe Friday. Some examples of this are: 1. In The Blues Brothers (1980) when Elwood Blues describes the specifications of the Bluesmobile. 2. In Ghostbusters (1984) when Dr. Raymond Stanz "orders" the demi-god Zuul to leave New York. 3. In 1941 (1979) when Sgt. Tree teaches the Ned Beatty character how to load and fire the anti-aircraft gun. 4. During the "SNL" Weekend Update whenever he would verbally spar with Jane Curtin.
Is portrayed by Danilo Di Julio in Gilda Radner: It's Always Something (2002).
Spends every Canada Day (July 1, also his birthday) performing some sort of civic duty in Kingston, Ontario and one year was appointed a Citizenship Judge where he swore in some immigrants as Canadian citizens.
Is part owner of a company that owns the exclusive distribution rights to Patron tequila for the entire country of Canada. Is now also distilling a vodka called "Crystal Head" to be bottled in a skull-shaped glass bottle.
His name is the partial inspiration for, and foundation of, the sobriquet of Glasgow, Scotland post-hardcore/indie-pop rock band Dananananaykroyd, as is the SNL character of Roseanne Roseannadanna, portrayed by his late Saturday Night Live (1975) "Weekend Update" costar, Gilda Radner.
Is the only one of the four main Ghostbusters (1984) actors to play his role in anything other than the two "Ghostbusters" movies. He portrayed Dr. Raymond Stantz in a cameo in the film Casper (1995).
Good friends with novelist Patricia Cornwell.
He was considered for Bill Murray's role in Where the Buffalo Roam (1980).
He and John Belushi were supposed to play the lead roles in An American Werewolf in London (1981). Saturday Night Live (1975) refused, as he wanted to use new faces, and because they were too busy working on Neighbors (1981), which they wanted Landis to direct.
He was considered for Michael Douglas' role in Fatal Attraction (1987), who coincidentally was named Dan.
Is a big fan of Paleontology and natural history, as is his wife, Donna Dixon, and their three daughters, Danielle Aykroyd, Belle Aykroyd, and Stella Aykroyd, who all appeared on the January 1, 2014 airing of Born to Explore (2011) with host and star Richard Weise, at the famous Alberta, Canada dig site of the Pipestone Creek pachyrhinosaur.
He appeared in two films concerning the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941: 1941 (1979) and Pearl Harbor (2001).
He is a member of Canadian charity Artists Against Racism.
When Michael Palin guest-hosted Saturday Night Live: Paul Simon, James Taylor & David Sanborn (1980), he remarked that Aykroyd was the only American who could have joined Monty Python. Ironically, Aykroyd is Canadian.
In 2009, Aykroyd contributed a series of reminiscences on his upbringing in Canada for a charity album titled Dan Aykroyd's Canada. He helped start the Blue Line Foundation, which is redeveloping flood-damaged lots in New Orleans and helping first responders buy them at reduced prices. Coastal Blue Line LLC, hopes to eventually rebuild 400 properties in New Orleans.
He hosts the nationally, now internationally as well, syndicated radio show "Elwood's BluesMobile", formerly known as House of Blues Radio Hour, under his Blues Brothers moniker Elwood Blues.
He was considered for the role of Alan Parish in Jumanji (1995) that went to Robin Williams.
He was considered for Willy Wonka in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005).
He was rumoured for a part in Burke and Hare (2010).
He was considered for the Master in Doctor Who (1996).
He came fifth in Rolling Stone's ranking of every Saturday Night Live (1975) castmember.
He was openly hostile to Wired (1989), a biopic of Belushi, and has since refused to work with anyone involved in the film. He had J.T. Walsh fired from Loose Cannons (1990) after Walsh had already done two days of filming, after finding out that Walsh had been in the cast. He claimed he hired witches to place a curse on the film.
He was originally cast as Nick Deezy in Vibes (1988). He dropped out after Columbia Pictures head David Puttnam insisted on casting Cyndi Lauper as the co-star. Jeff Goldblum replaced him.
He is a former reserve commander for the police department in Harahan, Louisiana, working for Chief of Police Peter Dale. He would carry his badge with him at all times. He currently serves as a Reserve Deputy of the Hinds County Sheriff's Department in Hinds County, Mississippi. He supports the Reserves with a fundraiser concert along with other blues and gospel singers in the State of Mississippi.
He was considered for Fred Flintstone in The Flintstones (1994).
He was the original choice for Garth Holliday in Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004). The role went to Chris Parnell.
He turned down John Ritter's role in Problem Child (1990) due to his commitment to Ghostbusters II (1989). He was also the first choice for Ritter's role in Stay Tuned (1992).
He was considered to voice Wilbur in The Rescuers Down Under (1990).
He was considered for True Lies (1994)'s role in True Lies (1994).
He was going to star opposite John Belushi and Steve Martin in ¡Three Amigos! (1986). Martin mentioned it in a Playboy interview published in January 1980, referring to the movie as "The Three Caballeros".
He was considered for Charles Grodin's role in Beethoven (1992).
In 2015, he appeared in a State Farm insurance commercial along with Jane Curtin, as the Coneheads, talking to "Jake", a State Farm agent.
He was going to star opposite John Belushi in a film adaptation of "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas" until Belushi's death put an end to that.
Wrote Ghostbusters as a tribute to his family's belief in astrology, mediumship and spirituality.
He was awarded the 2002 Queen Elizabeth II's Golden Jubilee Medal from the Canadian Governor General in Kingston, Ontario, Canada.
He was awarded the 2012 Queen Elizabeth II's Diamond Jubilee Medal from the Canadian Governor General in Sydenham, Ontario, Canada.