Paul Reiser

  1. Tom Hanks, Bachelor Party, 1983.         A madcap comedy that was as dramatic, behind the camera, as the heavier 1956 film of the same name. After one week, head Fox Joe Wizan sacked the leads (Paul Reiser and Kelly McGillis) for bad (or no) chemistry. and spent three weeks testing new Richies – er, no, now it was Ricky. The queue included Jim Carrey, Howie Mandell, Dean Paul Martin,, David Naughton, Tim Robbins. Wiz also suggested that Kelly had no sex-appeal. She proved the contrary in Witness, Top Gun, and as Mrs Robinson in Broadway’s The Graduate. Kelly, an Oscar nominee (for Reuben, Reuben) was never the stumbling block. Reiser was… The stand-up was not yet ready for, well, scripts – as he would be, superbly during TV’s Mad About You, 1992-1999. PS. The know-all Wizan also rejected… Julia Louis-Dreyfus!
  2. Jeff Goldblum, Transylvania 6-5000, 1985.  Two tabloid hacks are sent on a mission to Translvania. “Unearth Frankenstein – or lose your jobs.” But which pair? The unknown Reiser, still seven years away from Mad About You, or Tom Hanks or Peter Scolari – or the better known  Jeff Goldblum and Jospeh Bologna? Leonard Matlin’s review got it right: “Transylvania 6-5000 stunk.”
  3. Bob Saget, Full House, TV, 1987-1995.       No question about it, said creator Jeff Fraklin, his central character (talk show host and widower) Danny Tanner had to be Reiser or Saget. Reiser settled the matter by preferring another “widower” on My Two Dads. That ended rapidly in 1990, giving him tieme to create his 1992-1999 tele-trumph, Mad About You.

 Birth year: Death year: Other name: Casting Calls:  3