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Blog 74

Sadly Wilf's not come back yet but he did make the front page of the Camden New Journal so we're still hoping.


I noticed this the other day on the Chortle comedy website.  It’s from a report of a  Q&A session at the Just For Laughs comedy festival in Montreal with Arrested Development  creator Mitch Hurwitz.

“....He also discussed how Alexei Sayle was mistreated by the Hollywood machine, after being signed up to reprise the Eastern European persona he had employed as the landlord in The Young Ones for the 1992 Golden Girls spin-off Golden Palace.

Hurwitz, who was a writer on the series, told how executives fired Sayle before the pilot had been shot.

‘Everyone just decided, as they do when there’s a lot of executives, “He can't do it, he's not funny. We gotta fire him.”

‘So he’s fired. And then we shoot the pilot. And he storms it like crazy. The crowd loves him; he gets a standing ovation at the curtain call, but he’s got fired.’

The network then got Cheech Marin, of Cheech and Chong fame, to step into the ‘funny foreigner’ role. But when he got on set he refused to do the comedy Mexican accent he employed in his stoner double-act, telling them: ‘Oh no, I don’t do that any more.’

The sitcom got cancelled after one season.”

Though its 20 years ago now (they actually fired me on my 40th birthday) It gave me a really strange feeling to read that, to hear about a seminal episode from your own life being related by someone else and if Mitch would like to make it up to me I’m available.

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Reader Comments (6)

So, you and Cheryl Cole, then!

July 30, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMark G

Happy birthday, Alexei!

Also very glad to hear that Wilf is finally home!

Interesting blog, weren't there also misgivings about your role as the DJ in Dr. Who until you actually delivered the performance and the BBC were thrilled with it? Would love to know if Mitch does make it up to you.


August 7, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJay

Sorry to post again, but the nice lady who found Wilf has posted a thanks on the FB page with a couple of pics of Wilf. There're under the update I posted about him being found :)


August 7, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJay

Hello Alexei and friends
That's quite a find. And, I bet, vindicating.
I still can't believe they thought, "Alexei Sayle's just not funny. I know, what about Cheech from Cheech and Chong."
Mind you, I think it was probably a mistake of the creators to even include a "funny foreigner". Any hotel-based sitcom that thinks that's a legitimate route should take a long, hard look in the mirror.
(And then say "Mr. Fawlty, Mr. Fawlty!" 5 times into that mirror, wait for Andrew Sachs to appear, and then hit him on the head with a spoon.)

What's this about Wilf?? ...How did you know he was missing? Has he got his own website?

August 8, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterRussell

I can't believe you posted twice, Jay... Tsk.

August 8, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterRussell

Dear Alexei,

We are very happy to hear Wilf has been found! We wanted to tell you about a wonderful website that everybody with a companion animal should know about: missingpetpartnership.org. It is full of advice on how to search successfully for a missing cat or dog, the techniques used are different for each species and will also differ depending on whether the cat is an indoor only cat or an indoor/outdoor cat, as their behaviour when displaced will be very different. If you could help to publicise it, it could lead to many a happy reunion and potentially saving the lost animal's life.

I can recommend it personally as it was due to missingpetparnetship.org that I found my own cat, Cat Stevens, who was missing for a week. I hired "pet detectives" to track him using sniffer dogs. They found him trapped in a disused garage 5 houses up the road. That was in America, unfortunately no such service exists over here but the advice is still really helpful and will give anyone with a lost animal hope that it can have a happy ending.

Best wishes,
Claudia Tarry
Campaigner @ Animal Aid

August 9, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterClaudia Tarry

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