Splash (1984)

“Hey, Mistah Cawnbeef? Whatcha lookin’ faw down theah? Buried treasure?”

I’m in three scenes in this movie, playing Claude, one of the Moron Twins, a simple New England seaman hired by Walter Kornbluth (Eugene Levy) who is searching for evidence of mermaids. My partner in moronity is Jeff Doucette. And of course the beachcomber who happens to wear a tuxedo isTom Hanks. Keep an eye on him. He’s gonna go places, I think.
I got to audition for this because I had worked with Ron Howard on one of his last acting gigs. It was called “Bitter Harvest,” and it was a happy little movie based on the true story of a dairy farmer who discovers that rat poison has gotten into the cattle feed (this rings a bell twenty five years later). Ron played the farmer, and I played his farm hand. Art Carney was also in it, so I got to work with him too. That was cool.
But I digress. Splash. Right. I guess Ron found me sufficiently goofy/funny as a farm hand and thought of me when Splash came around.
The scene on the beach was shot in Coronado, near San Diego, and after we were done shooting they put us up at a hotel across from the Del Coronado. None of us expected we would be staying overnight, so we had no luggage. But they gave Eugene Levy this gigantic suite with a dining room so we ordered pizza and played poker till the wee hours. I remember Eugene losing and getting more and more furious at himself as the night went on, which the rest of us thought was just hysterical.
A few years ago I was at Agape in Santa Monica and a young woman came up to me and said “When I first moved away from home, my mom made me get an answering machine. For about a year, I had your scene from Splash as my outgoing message!”
How cool is that, really?