It’s not often that we get an off-camera glimpse at David Letterman, but frequent “Late Show” guest Richard Simmons is revealing what Dave’s really like when the cameras are switched off.
The fitness star, 63, says in an interview with Men’s Health magazine that Dave’s “standoffish” during commercial breaks, even with someone like Simmons, who has appeared on Letterman’s shows since the 1980s.
“I love David. He’s more complicated than any of them, that David,” the mag quotes Simmons as saying. “You know, I’ve never actually met him? … You do the show with him, and when they go to commercial, they remove you. You’re just not allowed to talk to him. Or if you are, he’s very standoffish.”
“The last time I was on, we went to commercial and I was like, ‘I’d love to meet your wife!’ He was like, ‘You never will.’ And then I was like, ‘And see your son!’ And he was like, ‘You’ll never see him.’ And then we come back from the commercial and he’s all friendly with me again. You think I’m kidding, but I’m not making this up,” Simmons said.
Our take: It’s not too surprising to hear this description of the “real” Dave, since we have had similar glimpses, via other guests, in the past, though such statements are rare. On the other hand, maybe Dave doesn’t like Simmons enough to subject his family to him — even if Dave understands his value as a guest. Whatever the case, we love this Simmons anecdote because it gives us the kind of behind-the-scenes peek at a late-night show (and, in the case of Letterman, late-night’s most enigmatic host) that we haven’t seen since Garry Shandling played a fictional late-night host on “The Larry Sanders Show.”