You Can Thank Carl Weathers Himself For His Hilarious Arrested Development Performance

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Written By Sedoso Feb

In a moment that almost sounds like it could have been a scene straight out of “Arrested Development,” Hurwitz recounted how, when he actually got in touch with Weathers, the actor immediately dismissed the exact type of joke Hurwitz and the writing staff were envisioning. And not only that, but it was actually Weathers himself who came up with the running bit for his character:

“So I called Carl, and said, ‘Hey, I don’t know if you’ve seen the show but we wanna use you for it, and you’d be working with David Cross.’ And he goes, ‘Great, but let me ask you something. It’s not going to be just a bunch of Rocky jokes is it?’ I laughed, ‘No! No! Give me a little credit, Carl. Of course not! It’s a multidimensional character.’ And he was like, ‘Because I direct and I’m a funny guy and I don’t wanna just do a bunch of Rocky jokes. Nobody wants that. Maybe I could be really cheap or something?’ And I said, ‘Whaaaat?’ ‘Maybe I could be really cheap?’ ‘Really? You’d like to do that?’ ‘Oh, absolutely, that’s what I’m saying. I want to play someone funny, not just be a sight gag.’ It was so much better. I went back to the writers room and said, ‘You’re not going to believe this. Carl Weathers wants to be incredibly cheap.’ All credit to Carl on that.”

With that wise suggestion, Weathers skyrocketed into the pantheon of the best “actors playing a version of themselves” in 21st century TV history, up there with Larry David in “Curb Your Enthusiasm” and Adam West in “Family Guy.” He approached his role with the perfect amount of seriousness; he never indicated to the audience that he was above the jokes that were being made at his expense, and there was always a twinkle in his eye as a performer — even when he was essentially doing an ad for Burger King right in the middle of an episode. Rest in peace, Carl Weathers. I will literally think of you every single time I make stew for the rest of my life.

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