This was followed in 1980 by their breakout hit, Airplane!, which remains a revered comedic milestone. Other ZAZ collaborations included the television series Police Squad! (1982), the features Top Secret! and Ruthless People and the feature film spinoffs of Police Squad!, the three Naked Gun films. All of these projects relied heavily on parodies, visual gags and breaking of the Fourth Wall, and established a strong cult following. The notable stylistic exception is Ruthless People, a more traditional farce that was directed by ZAZ, but unlike their other productions, not written by them.
ZAZ's status as a three-person team of co-directors is highly unusual, although some of their later projects were directed by David Zucker working solo, and with Jerry Zucker and Jim Abrahams credited only as producers and/or writers. Each member of the group has also had individual success:
It is possible that arranging their names "Zucker, Abrahams, and Zucker" is an homage to "Howard, Fine, and Howard". A sound clip of the end of the "Three Stooges" theme music plays at the end of each of the Naked Gun films.