John Stamos can’t escape ‘Full House’ comparisons with ‘Grandfathered’
John Stamos’ “Grandfathered” character is “a swinging dude like George Clooney before he turned against everything he believed in and got married,” the show’s star said Thursday.
Sounds like pre-Aunt Becky Uncle Jesse to us.
Instead of playing the motorcycle-riding, rocker uncle though, the “Full House” alum returns to the small screen in Fox’s unconventional family comedy as a lothario who finds out he’s a father and a grandfather, simultaneously. “Grandfathered’s” showrunners hope that lightning will strike twice with Stamos and the program will the long-lasting esteem of ABC’s beloved 1990s sitcom.
“This is the show I’ve been waiting for for 10 years,” Stamos said at the Television Critics Assn. summer press tour in Beverly Hills. Before “Grandfathered,” he said, “I was actively looking for a show with something a little edgier, to play a bad guy. and my agent said, ‘Just do what you do well. Play in your wheelhouse.’”
The “Necessary Roughness” actor plays suave restaurateur Jimmy Martino, who’s indulging in the delights of bachelor life when he’s approached by Gerald (Josh Peck). Gerald reveals that he’s Jimmy’s son, and that Jimmy is grandfather to his baby girl, Edie. Jimmy goes straight from being single to being a grandfather in the half-hour comedy, which premieres Sept. 29.
The word “grandfather” catches in Stamos’ throat “all the time,” he said.
“Granfathered” creator Daniel Chun (“The Simpsons,” “The Office,” “Happy Endings”) created the coming-of-age-at-any-age narrative and Stamos, along with “Galavant’s” Dan Fogelman and Chris Koch, serve as executive producers.
Rounding out the cast are Paget Brewster as Sara, Gerald’s mom and Jimmy’s one who got away; Christina Milian as Edie’s mom; Kelly Jenrette as Annelise, Jimmy’s lesbian assistant; and Ravi Patell the head chef at Jimmy’s eatery. As happened with Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen on “Full House,” Edie will be played by a set of twins, and Stamos good-naturedly confirmed rumors of the difficulties he experienced working with the Olsens when they were babies.
“They cried a lot. It was also very hard to get the shot,” he admitted.
Fogelman said the network family sitcom has evolved over the years, but noted that he’s witnessed the positive multigenerational reception to Stamos and “Full House” and hopes “Grandfathered” can garner that much reverence.
“There’s a common thread,” Fogelman said. “You want to sit with these characters and you want, need to feel the heart at the end of the episode.... If the heart doesn’t exist at the end of the episode, the show doesn’t work. I think that’s what’s going to separate this show from other shows.”
The producers and Fox are looking for similar heart and relatability in their characters. For example, Jimmy joins the family on a beach day and has to go to Target to pick up toys. In another, he plans Edie’s lavish birthday party at his restaurant, but instead of enlisting Big Bird and Queen Elsa, he gets a hawk and an ice sculpture.
After Stamos fielded questions about the show’s similarities to “Full House” and the Netflix reboot “Fuller House,” which he’s executive producing and has already filmed two episodes for, he did not address his reported stint in rehab following his June DUI arrest. The cast and crew were promptly ushered off the stage when the panel ended, instead of participating in the usual media scrum.
Follow me on Twitter @NardineSaad.
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