Saturday, September 17, 2016

Use me when playing "Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon"

You’re familiar with the game “Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon”, right?  Kevin has worked with pretty much everyone in Hollywood.  Even more people than Heidi Fleiss.   In no more than six projects you can usually trace any performer back to Kevin Bacon.  Well, for the serious “Kevin Bacon” player, let me add a few more links based on my involvement with him.

Granted, it’s not a big involvement. On FRASIER, whenever Dr. Crane spoke to a listener on his radio show they got a celebrity to play the caller. Kevin Bacon did one for a show my partner David and I wrote.

So you can now link Kevin to any of the other unlikely celebrities I wrote for or directed.

Dr. Timothy Leary did a FRASIER phone call for one of our shows. That’s right. We wrote for Dr. Timothy Leary.  You'd think that would be good for some complimentary LSD at the Free Clinic, wouldn't you?

Also, we wrote jokes for the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral William J. Crowe. He did a CHEERS we scripted.  See, aren’t I a name dropper?

Craig Ferguson guested on an episode of ALMOST PERFECT. So it’s just a few steps from Kevin Bacon to Craig Ferguson’s robot. Amaze your friends!


Then there are the athletes. We wrote for Wade Boggs (later to learn in his mistress’ tell-all in Playboy that he only took the job for a free trip to LA to bang her), Kevin McHale (who was sensational!), and Luis Tiant. (who also would have been great if only you could understand one single solitary thing he was saying – even after sixty takes).

So in only two steps you can get from Kevin Bacon to Luis Tiant. There’s a huge bar bet waiting to be won.

As a director, I had the pleasure of coaxing comic brilliance out of Karl Malone (in this case “the Mail Man” did not deliver – oy!), funnyman Mike Ditka (“a little more energy, Mike”), and Terry Bradshaw (“a little less energy, Terry. In fact, a LOT less energy. In fact, just stand there.”)

Oh sure, I’ve worked with a lot of top flight actors but you know all of them and could probably get to Kevin Bacon through other paths. The real challenge comes when someone throws Art Garfunkel at you (FRASIER caller), or you’re at the national finals and for the world’s championship you’re given the name Bombo the orangutan (did a JUST SHOOT ME I directed).

So use me. Be my guest. It’s my little way of Paying It Forward. The only thing disconcerting about providing this useful public service is that all these celebrities that I worked with so intimately over the years – I bet not one remembers me and knows who I am.  But that's okay.  I'm sure Bombo doesn't know who Kevin Bacon is either.

16 comments:

Stephen Marks said...

Holy shit, more name dropping here than a Rams running back fumbling a New York City phone book. Okay I'm changing the game to Sex Degrees of Kevin Bacon. Kevin worked on Frasier which co-starred John Mahoney. Mahoney had a role in the movie American President starring horndog Micheal Douglas and also starring Annette Bening. Bening married horndog Warren Beatty, who's first movie was Splendor in the Grass co-starring Natalie Wood, who was murdered by horndog R.J. Wagner. Wagner went on to marry Stephanie Powers, who appeared on Hollywood Squares. The host of Squares was Peter Marshall, who's son Peter Lacock played in the major leagues at the same time as, yep you guessed it, the horndog Mr. Levine mentioned, WADE BOGGS!!!!!

Astroboy said...

It's not to do with you or Kevin Bacon, but one day I was doing the 'sixth degree' thing and I got from me to Hitler in, I think, 5 degrees. Though I can't for the life of me remember right now how I got there! Now I'll spend all day thinking about it...

Carol said...

I have a Bacon number of 1, actually. I used to sing in a show (Sunday nights at a restaurant with an audience of old people) with Calista Flockhart, and she was in a movie with Kevin Bacon.

I like having an Alan Alda number of 1 (kinda) since I know you, and you know him. Speaking of...how funny is that Cigna commercial?

RobEB said...

I'm only three degrees from my comic idols Laurel and Hardy. I was an extra in the movie BACKDRAFT with Robert DeNiro, who appeared in the remake of CAPE FEAR, which featured Robert Mitchum (who was also in the original CAPE FEAR) in a small part, who was in THE DANCING MASTERS starring Laurel and Hardy.

blinky said...

Kevin Bacon walked by me in the hall at KNTV in San Jose when he was doing the morning show in the 90's. This year i stuck an IFB in Rob Gronkowski's ear during Super Bowl (TM)(R)(C) (all rights reserved by the NFL) week in SF for a taping of Mad Money. So there's that connection.

Arthur Mee said...

But Luis Tiant's appearance on Cheers was written to play up the fact you couldn't understand him. (It was in a commercial -- Sam came in to "relieve" Tiant after Tiant blew take after take.) So Tiant played it perfectly, I thought!

Loosehead said...

Stephen Marks - I think you need to find space for an "allegedly" somewhere in there, or one day he may sue and ask you to produce your evidence or pay him lots of money.
I have a "Queen of England" score of two - my cousin got his MBE from Big Ears, whose mother is...Queen of England. The closest I come to Hollywood is I made Meryl Streep, henceforth known in my house as "my mate Meryl", giggle like a little girl in Disneyworld once.

Rashad Khan said...

I'm only one or two degrees from Sir Michael Caine, who is married to Shakira Baksh, who is (allegedly) my late father's cousin. (I say "allegedly," because I've never been able to verify Papa Khan's claim.)

Stephen Marks said...

You know what Loosehead, I agree! Thank you and I will correct my mistake right now:

R.J. Wagner is a horndog, allegedly!

VP81955 said...

I once met Garson Kanin, who signed my copy of his book "Hollywood"; he directed the lady in my avatar in 1940's "They Knew What They Wanted," and wrote extensively on Carole, whom he adored. (Then again, nearly everybody in the industry did.) Now how many degrees are Kanin, or Lombard, from Kevin Bacon?

K.M. Richards said...

Speaking of "Frasier", reruns of same are airing on Cozi TV (KNBC/4.2 for those of us here in L.A.), including a marathon today. I'd forgotten how well-written this series was and I am laughing so hard!

You must have had loads of fun working on that series, Ken.

Pseudonym said...

My Erdős number is 4.

Dayhew said...


I did not know production staff were part of the Kevin Bacon game. Seems kind of self serving since it is usually just actors. I guess for personal application it works, but not for a bar conversation.

Paul Duca said...

Stephen...Wagner married Jill St. John--he was only married to Powers on TV.

Daddy Background said...

Any performer can link to Kevin Bacon?

Yes, ANY performer.

http://bp47.blogspot.ca/2005/11/extra-bacon.html

SharoneRosen said...

I went to a pre-release screening of Florence Foster Jenkins last month. Kevin & Kyra were standing a mere 3 feet away from me at the after party. I need clarification. Does that make me one degree or two???

And, btw, Hugh Grant is just as adorable up close as he is on screen. He was talking to K&K, only arm length's away from me... ahhhh