Something you’d do for a pal

Bobcat Goldthwait already counts his latest movie starring buddy Robin Williams a success, no matter how well it does at theatres.

Director Bobcat Goldthwait

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. — Bobcat Goldthwait already counts his latest movie starring buddy Robin Williams a success, no matter how well it does at theatres.

That’s because World’s Greatest Dad star Williams landed a slot to promote the film on NBC’s The Tonight Show, where Goldthwait once burned his own bridges by setting a chair on fire during an appearance with Jay Leno.

In an interview shortly before Williams’ Tonight Show gig, Goldthwait marveled at the fact that the low-budget black comedy he wrote and directed would get airtime on one of Hollywood’s premier publicity venues.

“I truly, not in a bitter way, am not too concerned about box office, because trust me, when I sat down and wrote this screenplay, I never thought that would happen,” Goldthwait, 47, said over coffee alongside Williams. “He’s going to go on The Tonight Show and talk about a movie I made. I’m banned from The Tonight Show.”

World’s Greatest Dad continues Goldthwait’s tradition of truly twisted humour, which he also showcased in Sleeping Dogs Lie, an indie comedy about a woman whose impromptu sex act with her dog causes havoc years later after she and her boyfriend adopt a policy of complete honesty.

The new movie stars Williams as a high-school poetry teacher whose dream of becoming a famous writer finally happens after publicity surrounding a bizarre family tragedy snowballs into a national outpouring.

The story leaves Williams’ single dad caught in a deception that serves his personal ambitions while sugarcoating the truth about his malignantly surly teenage son (Daryl Sabara of the Spy Kids flicks).

Williams, 58, has been friends with Goldthwait for nearly 30 years. He appeared in Goldthwait’s 1991 directing debut, Shakes the Clown. That movie starred Goldthwait as a boozy clown framed for murder, Williams signing on for a bit part as a favour to his pal.

“I went, ‘Alcoholic clown movie. Yes, I want that in my resume,”’ wisecracked Williams.

Goldthwait sent the World’s Greatest Dad script to Williams to get his opinion, not thinking his friend might star in the film, which opened last week in New York City and expands to more cities starting Friday.

Williams thought he might be able to help Goldthwait out as he had on Shakes the Clown, figuring “maybe there’s a small part to play. Then I read it and I went, ‘Uh, you know the main guy?”’

Goldthwait, who recalled how his budget was so tight on Sleeping Dogs Lie that he broke into a stranger’s garage to film a scene, said he had anticipated a similarly bare-bones production for World’s Greatest Dad.

After Williams came on board, the film took on a bigger life, Goldthwait said.

“The idea that he would do the movie just suddenly changed it, and watching him in these scenes, I was sitting there and I was getting goose bumps. It was so exceeding my expectations of what this movie was when I wrote it.”

In the 1980s, Goldthwait parleyed his jittery, demented standup act into a big-screen career, mostly in forgettable comedies such as Hot to Trot, Burglar and several Police Academy movies, which he mockingly calls “Police Lobotomy.”

He generally gave up on acting in the mid-1990s, around the time of his Tonight Show fire-starter moment. “I jokingly say I retired from acting the same time they stopped hiring me, so it worked out really well,” Goldthwait said. “I go out and do standup, and I’m starting to enjoy it again, but I go out and do that to pay bills so I can keep making these really tiny personal movies. “

Just Posted

Councillors want to represent Red Deer at AUMA

City council approves endorsement

Cannabis smoke raises health concerns

Smoke Free Bylaw returns to Red Deer city council Sept. 4

Avid Penhold climber Catlin Hannah’s death a reminder of the dangers of scrambling

Hannah never returned from his Mount Smuts attempt on Aug. 12.

Children, elderly at risk as smoke from distant fires hangs over parts of B.C.

VANCOUVER — Thick smoke blanketing British Columbia communities far from any flames… Continue reading

WATCH: Medicine River Wildlife Centre opens new playground

The grand opening of the playground was Saturday morning

Police chiefs want new data-sharing treaty with U.S. as privacy questions linger

OTTAWA — Canada’s police chiefs are pressing the Trudeau government to sign… Continue reading

Pope on sex abuse: “We showed no care for the little ones”

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis issued a letter to Catholics around the… Continue reading

Ottawa announces $189M to extend employment insurance for seasonal workers

ESCUMINAC, N.B. — Ottawa has announced $189 million for an employment insurance… Continue reading

Trudeau formally announces he’ll run again in next year’s election

MONTREAL — Justin Trudeau will run again in the 2019 federal election.… Continue reading

Smoke from B.C. wildfires prompts air quality advisories across Western Canada

VANCOUVER — More smoky, hazy air is expected to blanket much of… Continue reading

Anti-pipeline protesters released days before weeklong jail sentences end

MAPLE RIDGE, B.C. — Several pipeline protesters were released from a British… Continue reading

All eyes on Andrew Scheer as Conservative convention set for Halifax

OTTAWA — After a week of internal caucus squabbles, Conservative Leader Andrew… Continue reading

Trump says his White House counsel not a ‘RAT’ like Nixon’s

BRIDGEWATER, N.J. — President Donald Trump insisted Sunday that his White House… Continue reading

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month