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Gary Coleman's unlikely role on 'Bowfinger'

May 29, 2010 |  8:58 am

Colem
We noted Friday that former child star Gary Coleman had a very tenuous connection to the feature-film world. But we neglected to mention one role: as a security guard on the 1999 Hollywood parody "Bowfinger."

Like, an actual security guard.

Coleman wasn't in the film -- he was guarding the area where it was being shot. Few were more surprised to find Coleman in that position than comedian and actor Jamie Kennedy, who costarred in the movie. On Friday afternoon, when Coleman died in a Utah hospital days after suffering a brain hemorrhage, we spoke to Kennedy -- who is promoting his new film, "Finding Bliss" -- and asked him to elaborate on his encounter with the diminutive actor.

"That was like the most star-studded movie I had ever been on as a young kid, and I'll never forget getting on set and seeing Gary Coleman was our security guard," Kennedy recalled. "I was like, 'What are you doing here? You should be in the movie.' And he said, 'I need a job, man.' I was like, 'But you're Gary Coleman.' And he said, 'That don't mean [crap].'"

Kennedy said he admired Coleman, who he grew up watching on TV as a child. "It's so sad," he said. "The poor kid was tortured. He was burned by this world."

-- Amy Kaufman

Twitter.com/AmyKinLA

Photo: Gary Coleman in 2008. Credit: Chris Pizzello / Reuters


 
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Todd Bridges knew Gary Coleman's "junk"

Before I met with Todd Bridges my initial feeling was, why on earth would I want to meet with that guy?
Well, the first thing I learned about Todd Bridges is that he is no relation to the Oscar winner, Jeff Bridges.
All jokes aside, I have to say I was pleasantly surprised by how nice and well-spoken Todd actually is.
Bridges has had a roller coaster life. Success and heartache.
Todd Bridges, the man who played Willis Jackson on the TV series "Diff'rent Strokes," offered his own insight into the trials of being a childhood star and shared his story of drug addiction.
He seems very humble, much unlike his fellow "Diff'rent Strokes" co-star Gary Coleman. Todd acts like a guy just happy to be alive, and for good reason.
As an actor of a hit show, the young Bridges was pulling in $30,000 a week. But by age 22 he was out of work. Then Bridges said he began selling drugs.
Specifically, he battled addictions to crystal meth and cocaine. "I hated myself," said the 44-year-old Bridges. "I hated the way I looked in the mirror.
Bridges' recent autobiography is "Killing Willis: From Diff'rent Strokes to the Mean Streets to the Life I Always Wanted."

Tom: I see you have a photo there from your wrestling days, are you still wrestling?
Bridges: "Yeah, I gave it up there for a while and now I'm getting back into it."
Tom: You did some boxing, too, any chance of doing that again?
Bridges: "No. But I did kick Vanilla Ice's ass." (Laughing)
Tom: How did you come with the idea for the new book?
Bridges: "The media wouldn't tell the real story so I wanted to put it in a book."
Tom: "You should have named it " Willis gets a second chance"
Bridges: "I hear that!"
Tom: Do you still talk to Gary Coleman?
Bridges: "No, I don't talk to him anymore".
Tom: I hear he has a new movie
Bridges: Oh yeah? "What's the name of it?"
Tom: You know The one that shows his junk, "Midgets vs Mascots"
Bridges: "You know that ain't real right?" ( laughing )
Tom: How would you know? ( laughing )
Bridges: Have you seen it? "You know that thing is fake!" (laughing)
Tom: Are you sure?
Bridges: "C'mon man Gary ain't got nothing like that, I mean that thing is touchin the ground!"( both laughing)
Gary Coleman responded: Whatyoutalkinbouttodd

Tom: So what's next for you? Do you have anything else in the works?
Bridges: "Just my book and my TV show other than that I'm just taking it easy."
Bridges: "The plan is to kick back with my kids and enjoy time with them."
Tom: I'm going to be on the Fox Morning show next week and the producer thought it would be fun if you did a call in.
Well it will be aired here about 8:30 eastern time so that would be 5:30 by you.
Bridges: "5:30?? There ain't no way I'm getting up at 5:30, sorry man." (laughing)
Tom: Do you blame Hollywood for what happened to you?
Bridges: "Can't blame Hollywood, it's not Hollywood -- those are choices that I made. The media always wants to blame Hollywood: 'Oh, it's because they threw you away,' and all this and that, but I can't blame Hollywood. ... I made some stupid choices; I made some horrible mistakes that cost me."

Tom Murro
celebritymagnet(dot)com


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