Chevy Chase is trying to make a comeback. Saturday Night Live’s first breakout star is appearing in two upcoming episodes of ABC’s Brothers & Sisters, and also occasionally taking back his “Weekend Update” seat. But as he told Emma Rosenblum, he’s finding it’s hard out there for a (former) comedy bigwig.
What do you think about the television strike?
I love it; I think it’s beautiful.
I couldn’t care less. I’m actually in the bathroom; I just had a shower. I’m dressed, though, don’t worry. I was watching the tongue-tied-ness of those women on The View, and I’m thinking to myself, it’s not that difficult to speak like a human being without a writer. Aren’t these women reasonably intelligent?
I’m not sure.
I don’t like it affecting Dave Letterman. That’s very serious to me. You’re a writer, what do you think of it?
We’re not on strike. And they get paid more than we do.
You’re going to be really big, Amy.
But your guest appearance next to Sally Field on Brothers & Sisters—that’s all filmed and done with, right?
Yep, I think they’re about five shows ahead. I’m in two episodes as an old boyfriend of Sally’s, and it’s very much like me in many ways—a guy who left for Canada instead of going to Vietnam, and he and Sally have a little romantic reunion.
How did the role come about?
It’s not that I had the choice, it’s that I had a call from my agent, who said I’d been asked to play this character. My daughters, who I’ve been raising for the past few years, are now in college, and I’d like to get back into work.
Did you watch the show before?
No. I watch Discovery.
Now will you watch it?
I’ll watch it when I’m on, just to see what they cut.
You recently appeared on SNL’s “Weekend Update” as political correspondent. Is that a regular gig?
Yeah. It was sort of a test thing. And it wasn’t my best performance. Quite frankly, I was so overwhelmed by the applause that it felt like I took attention away from Seth and Amy, and so I’m staying away a while. But I plan to go back when the elections are in full swing.
You were overwhelmed by the applause?
It wasn’t because of my performance, by any means, but there was so much loud applause for Chevy Chase, back at my old desk at “Weekend Update,” it made me feel a little stupid.
Do you think that SNL’s better this season?
Sure. Whatever. Who knows.
What’s your career plan at this point?
Ideally, I’d like to go right back to getting $7 million a picture and being the headliner. That’s probably not going to happen.
Why won’t it happen?
You take off with being a father, but then you come back in to find it’s hard to even get a part on Brothers & Sisters.