Plus-sized comic Louie Anderson explained the unlikely scenario that resulted in his participation on a diving-competition show that emerged as a surprise hit last week for ABC.
Come to think of it, that makes two unlikely scenarios for this show called “Splash”: In addition to Anderson, a decidedly unathletic 59-year-old man who must weigh more than 300 pounds, competing in a high-platform diving competition, the show’s emergence as a bona fide hit in its debut Tuesday also seemed unlikely to most of us.
And yet, the show drew just over 9 million viewers at 8 p.m. (7c) Tuesday on ABC — a very splashy start.
So how did Louie get on the show? He explained the story Friday night on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.” Basically, it came down to his manager one day informing him that producers had expressed interest in Louie participating in the show.
The producers were probably inspired by an overseas version of the show that also featured a competitor as big as Anderson. Louie said it was likely a show that aired in the Netherlands.
Louie told Leno that his manager showed him some footage of this plus-sized competitor and Louie was impressed. “They had a guy my size on it and I said I can do it too,” Louie explained.
In Part Two of their interview, Leno asked Anderson about the injury he reportedly sustained Thursday while taping a future episode of the diving show. Louie confirmed the reports, but he didn’t specify what happened nor did he exhibit any pain or discomfort on “The Tonight Show.” The injury was reported earlier on Friday to be bruised ribs. (We reported it here.) Leno then showed a clip of Louie’s dive off a 23-foot platform in the premiere episode of “Splash.”