"Full House" fans have long wondered whatever happened to predictability and though the answer to that question remains unclear, HufPost TV can tell you whatever happend to cast of the ABC hit family sitcom.
In honor of the 25th anniversary of "Full House," which debuted on September 22, 1987, HuffPost TV chatted with "Full House" alumni Dave Coulier, Jodi Sweetin, Lori Loughlin and more about their experiences on the show, favorite episodes, the awful late '80s hair and wardrobe, and what they're up to these days.
Take a look at the "Full House" cast then-and-now below and then, read on to find out which "Full House" role Dave Coulier also auditioned for, which castmember guest star Little Richard slapped, who slept on Bob Saget's couch before "Full House" ever debuted, where John Stamos and Lori Loughlin originally met, what Kurt Cobain has to do with "Full House" and how the cast reacted to its cancellation in 1995 after eight seasons.
Dave Coulier (Joey Gladstone)
Since "Full House" came to an end, Coulier used his awesome ability to do impressions (as "Full House" fans saw with Uncle Joey and his Popeye, Bullwinkle, etc. ) to do some voice acting. He also hosted "America’s Funniest People" for four seasons and tried two reality TV shows: he was part of VH1's "The Surreal Life" in 2003 and he partnered with former Olympic skater Nancy Kerrigan on "Skating with Celebrities" in 2006. Coulier has one son Luc, who is 11 years old. He's still doing standup -- and selling "Cut it out" t-shirts. Find out more about what he's up to below.
Can you tell me how you got cast on "Full House"?
I went in and auditioned -- it was one of those auditions where they were inviting every comedian in town and every comedic actor. So I went in and auditioned for Tom Miller, Bob Boyett and Jeff Franklin and then, after my audition, and I was walking out and they said, "Thank you very much." You know, the usual.
But then Tom Miller stopped me and said, "Wait a second. Can you read for the father role as well?" And I said, "Yeah. Sure. Give me five minutes." So I went out, looked at the father's lines, came back in, read for the father and they said, "Thank you very much" again. [Laughs.]
Then Jeff Franklin, who was good friends with Garry Shandling, walked me out and said, "Hey. I'll let Garry know you did a great job." And I said, "Oh, thanks! I appreciate that!"
And then I went home and those were the days of answering machines and there was a message from my manager Brad Grey, who's now the chairman of Paramount Studios, and it said, "Dave. You got the 'Full House' pilot. Give me a call."
The show had very a less than auspicious start. [Laughs.] We shot the pilot with another actor, John Posey, playing the father role. So we shot the full pilot and then Bob Saget was in New York doing a CBS morning program and they let him go. Jeff Franklin said, "Hey, Dave. I'd like you and Stamos to do a screen test with Saget." And I said, "What are you talking about it?" And he said, "I'd really like to hire him for the father role and I want to send it to the network." And I was like, "You gotta be kidding me because I was an usher in Bob's wedding."
Oh really? How did you guys know each other?
I met Bob when I was still a teenager. I was 18 years old and he was on a comedy short tour. He walked into a little comedy club in Detroit and I hadn't even done much stand-up. I think I had been on stage two or three times. So Saget came in on this comedy short tour and did a guest set with two other comedians from the West Coast and I watched them and I said, "Oh man. These guys are so good. That's what I want to be." So I talked to Bob after that show and he said, "I'll tell you what. You seem like a nice kid. Why don't you give me a call when you get to LA?" and I thought, "Oh sure. This is how it works." And he gave his phone number and I got to LA about six months later and called Bob. The irony of all of this is that when I didn't have an apartment, I slept on Bob's couch. [Laughs.] It's just too weird.
Oh my god. That's so funny. So it's just a coincidence that you two starred on the show together?
Total, total, total coincidence. And then, you know, we do "Full House" and I end up basically sleeping on a couch on the show and I was just like, "OK. This is life imitating art, which is really weird."
That is! Do you remember, in either watching it or filming it, a favorite "Full House" episode?
Well, I think we all had our favorite. Mine was probably the hockey episode with Stonewall [played by Dan Moriarty]. [Laughs.] It was just because I'm a big hockey fan and I played hockey. It gave me an opportunity to do something -- other than comedy -- that I really, truly love. And I got to hire a bunch of my hockey player knucklehead friends as extras and we just had such a blast. It was really fun.
The show was filled with a lot kids and there were plenty of pets and animal guest stars. But in Hollywood, they always say never to work with kids or animals.
How true. "Full House" is like W.C. Fields' nightmare because we had a family dog, we had an elephant on the show, we had a turtle -- I know. It was just craziness.
But we really bonded together as this dysfunctional family off-camera as well so. I think Mary-Kate and Ashley were 8 months old when we started so there were tedious times trying to get them to do certain things on camera and for good reason: They weren't professional actors, they were little babies.
And Jodie and Candace were just spectacular. I remember when we first got together for a table read for the pilot, Jodie Sweetin killed. She filled the room with laughter and Stamos and I went, "Well, she's the star of the show." At four years old, she's reading her script in front of executives and hugely successful producers and she took the room over. I just said, "Oh. There's no way. There's no way I'm going to top this four-year-old girl."
And the parents were great. We just became so close and we really bonded together and made lifelong friends. It's crazy that a TV show does that, but we really do truly care about each other like family members.
That's so nice. And I'm sure you guys had fun on set. Which co-stars made it most difficult to keep a straight face while shooting scenes? Lori Loughlin said you, by the way.
[Laughs.] Yeah, I was the prankster on set. I was always doing really silly things to get everybody to laugh. There was one where I couldn't look at Saget. We never got it.
Do you remember what it was?
I was with Bob in this scene and I had to look at him and say, "Uncle Jesse ran away from home?" We couldn't get the take and I remember the director freaking out, saying, "We gotta get this, you guys!" It just made us laugh even harder.
And there was another time with me, Stamos and Saget. I think it was the episode where there was a van in our backyard for some reason, and we were just having trouble getting what we needed and it was a really difficult scene.
John and Bob and I had to walk around the van and it was about 10 at night, but the kids were all there -- they still had stuff to shoot. Everybody had monitors in their dressing rooms so you could watch what's happening on stage.
And I remember, we all pulled our pants down, just to make the crew laugh. When we walked out onto the scene, we all had our pants down to our ankles and everybody cracked up and was laughing. And then all of sudden, here come the moms. And the moms are all looking at us with folded arms going, "Really, guys? Really? We're back there. The girls are coloring and you guys have your pants off? We can see everything you're doing."
That's so funny. Do you have a favorite guest star that you had fun working with?
We had many, but Little Richard was on the show and he was just so bizarrely weird and funny and sweet and kind and out of his mind. It was just so fun to be around this musical icon who was so flamboyantly overt with every comment. It was just bizarre. And the Beach Boys were always really great. They just really embraced us and us them and it was a lot of fun for us.
Do you remember how you felt when you found out the show was ending?
I think we were all pretty sad. I also was perplexed because we were still pulling in huge numbers. It was very perplexing to be a hit and for the network to say, "Oh, by the way, we love you guys. You're a huge hit. But we're really going in a different direction." I thought, "You're going in a different direction from a huge hit? OK. I guess I don't get network television."
Then, we were possibly going to go to The WB network, which was really just establishing itself in its first year. What I had heard was that we were gioing to get picked up for two more years and go over to The WB and try to be a flagship show for them.
But I think there were a couple of the actors -- like, I think John and Bob -- who were ready to move on to other things. I can't speak for everybody, for the rest of us, but it was just so much fun. It was like going to a comedy playground every week -- and having the best equipment to play on. So I loved being there. I could have done another five years. It was so much fun.
Looking back, which was worse -- the hair or the clothes?
Oh man. [Laughs.] Well, I think they're equally bad. Here's the thing: Everybody wore their hair like that back then so there really wasn't that much of an excuse for that.
The clothes? I remember, they would bring these outfits in and I would say, "You know what? That is not tacky enough. You better bring in something worse." I would just try to wear the weirdest, loudest, most awful stuff. The wardrobe guy would go, "You're going to pick the ugliest thing, aren't you?" And I'm like, "You got it!" [Laughs.]
That's hilarious. I know Joey had a lot of catchphrases, but out of all the ones on "Full House," which was your favorite?
Well, mine was "Cut it out." It's kind of funny how this story is kind of convoluted. My friend Mark Cendrowski and I had been friends since we were eight years old back in St. Clair Shores, Michigan. He and I always wrote comedy bits. His dad gave us an 8 mm movie camera and we used to shoot little funny movies. I was always the comedian and he was always the director.
And now, Mark directs "The Big Bang Theory." So it's just so funny because I'll visit him and we'll sit there in the directors chairs and look at him and say, "We've been doing this since we were eight years old. Isn't it just too weird that we're both here? Don't you feel like at any moment someone's going to tap us shoulder and go, 'Hey. You two. Get out of show business'?"
So I stole "Cut it out" from Mark. He used to do this Mark Suave character and I said, "I'm gonna steal that from you." I started using it on a Nickelodeon show I hosted called "Out of Control." And I thought, "You know what? I'm gonna start working it in here to 'Full House." And it really stuck. I do comedy gigs now and sell these "Cut it out" t-shirts and I can't bring enough of 'em.
Lori didn't remember "Forever," which was upsetting to me.
Oh, I used to make fun of John for singing "Forever." I used to stand up in the stands by myself when the other actors were on the stage rehearsing and I used to be this character, a huge Japanese fan of the show that I named Haroki. I would laugh too hard at everything the actors did and when John would walk out, I would sing "Forever." I would never get the lyrics right -- it was always half-Japanese, half-American. So, I would sing the "Full House" theme song because I would start laughing way too hard if I sang "Forever."
Where do you think Joey Gladstone would be now?
[Laughs.] Wow. Me and Andrea Barber teamed up with some producers from Funny or Die and we did this thing of where would Joey and Kimmy be, which is that they're now married and they still have Comet.
Yes! That was amazing. And it doesn't sound that unreasonable besides the Comet factor.
[Laughs.] I think Joey would probably be like, the manager of some Comedy Club.
Still wearing the loud shirts?
Still wearing the shirts, but he's now about 450 pounds.
[Laughs.] OK. That sounds possible, too. I'm sure "Full House" fans come up to you often. What do you hear most?
Well, a lot of them think I'm Jeff Daniels first of all.
They do? Do they ask you about "The Newsroom"?
I don't even fight it anymore. People used to come up to me and say, "Hey. Are you 'dumb' or 'dumber'?" And I used to go, "Oh. I'm actually the 'Full House' guy." I kind of look like Jeff and we're both from Michigan. But now, people come up and they're like, "We love your new show 'The Newsroom.'" And I'm like, "Oh. Great. Let's get a picture." So then I hope they show it to their friends and they say, "You idiot. That's the 'Full House' guy, not the HBO guy."
Have you talked to Jeff about it?
Well, years ago, when we first met -- we're both from Detroit -- we were at a Detroit Redwing charity outing. So, we see each other coming around the corner and he starts pointing at me and I start pointing at him. And he goes, "If one more person comes up to me and says, 'Cut it out,' I'm gonna explode." And I said, "I feel same way about people asking me if I'm 'dumb' or 'dumber'?"
I mean, I can see a resemblance, but ...
Believe me. It happens a lot.
OK. Fair enough. Since "Full House" is on in syndication all over, do you ever watch reruns?
I don't. People ask me if I watch the show and I've only see a couple of them when my son was young. He used to call it "Daddy's Show." So I watched a couple episodes and it was just too soon and then, I guess I got so far away from it that I thought, "Someday I'll sit down and watch all 192 episodes." So I really haven't seen the show that often.
I know a lot of the former castmembers keep in touch. You do you speak with the most?
I talk to Lori quite a bit and I talk to John and Candace. Well, I talk to everybody. But I'm talking to Lori right now because we have a series idea that we're hoping to sell where we're both on it. But that's such secret agent information. So we try to get lunch, but I do the same thing with Jodie, Candace, Bob and John too.
Well, there was a hint in there, but what are working on? What's next for you?
Over the years, I've continued to do standup. When I do a performing arts center or a theater or a college, people say, "You don't swear, do ya?" And I really never have. I don't go on stage with that MO, but I came up the ranks of "The Tonight Show" and you had to work clean and I never forgot that. So I said, "You know, there must be something to this." So I started this thing called "Clean Guys" and I did a bunch of shows that test the waters to see if people would respond and they did.
So I'm putting together a deal with National CineMedia and they're this huge company that controls the time in movie theaters. We're going to have our first show on January 24, 2013.
It's impressive that you managed to keep your standup clean having worked with Bob who's known for being so dirty.
I always tell people that Bob is my filthy Jewish sister.
That's hilarious. Well, there are always rumors about the cast getting together for a reunion. Would you participate?
I think it would be really difficult to recreate what was so popular in a generation. So I think the show stands for itself for what it was and still is for a lot of people. I for one wouldn't really want to mess with that because I think people have such a strong vision in their heads as to what the show means to them, that if we came back, I just don't think we could recreate that.