The 'Night Court' star recounts deal he made for 1974 movie.
No doubt John Larroquette has experienced plenty of highs and lows throughout his 50-year acting career. But in one instance, he took a job for the high.
The star of the new NBC Night Court reboot (which premieres Jan. 17) confirms to Parade that he narrated the prologue of the 1974 horror film The Texas Chainsaw Massacre in exchange for marijuana courtesy of director Tobe Hooper.
“Totally true,” he says of the Internet rumors. “He gave me some marijuana or a matchbox or whatever you called it in those days. I walked out of the [recording] studio and patted him on the back side and said, “Good luck to you!” (Read the full interview in this week’s Parade e-edition cover story.)
As the five-time Emmy winner explains it, he knew the director dating back to the summer of 1969. Larroquette, a New Orleans native, was toiling as a bartender at a small Colorado resort because “I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do with my life.” Hooper happened to be working in town on a project, and the two struck up a friendship.
Four years later, Larroquette had uprooted to Los Angeles to jumpstart his fledgling acting career. “Tobe heard I was in town and asked for an hour of my time to narrate something for this movie he just did,” he says. “I said ‘Fine!’ It was a favor.”
That ultra-low-budget movie—in which the chainsaw-wielding, mask-wearing Leatherface terrorizes a group of outcasts—turned out to be a classic that spawned sequels, remakes and even video games. And while Larroquette went on to play attorney Dan Fielding on the 1984-92 hit NBC sitcom Night Court, he continued to voice subsequent installments. Best of all, he received a paycheck for his efforts. “You do something for free in the 1970s and get a little money in the ‘90s,” he says, adding, “It’s certainly the one credit that’s stuck strongly to my resume.”
By the way, he’s still never seen the Texas Chainsaw Massacre films. “I’m not a big horror movie fan,” he says.