Kelsey Grammer has admitted that he’really wanted’ David Hyde Pierce to appear in the Frasier revival.
The 68-year-old actor reprised his legendary role for the new revival, which is presently showing on Paramount+ on Thursdays.
Although Bebe Neuwirth had a wonderful appearance as Lilith Sternin in last week’s episode, and Peri Gilpin’s Roz Doyle will appear, the lead has so far been joined by a new cast, including Nicholas Lyndhurst and Jack Cutmore-Scott.
David, who portrayed his similarly stuffy brother Niles Crane to perfection for all 11 seasons of the original series, has indicated he would not be appearing, and Daphne Moon actor Jane Leeves has also declined.
Kelsey, on the other hand, admitted in a recent interview following the conclusion of the Sag strikes that he ‘tried his hardest’ to influence his on-screen sibling’s opinion before shooting.
‘I really wanted David Hyde Pierce to join us. And I did my best to have him come along for the ride,’ he explained to Variety. ‘And at one point, he finally just said, “I don’t really want to play the character anymore.” And that was fine.’
When questioned if the upcoming reboot would be a “continuation” if David joined, the Simpsons favourite claimed that it would still be a “maturation.”
‘No, never a continuation. A couple of other shows have basically picked up where they left off. And I didn’t want to do that,’ he continued. ‘Because the guy had been away for 20 years.
‘It had to be a maturation, he had to be a wiser guy, he had to take a few things less seriously, and take some of the serious things more seriously. And that should be his family.’
The initial programme aired 30 years ago, and while Frasier was surrounded by his family, including the late John Mahoney as his father, Martin Crane, the doctor’s third act introduced viewers to a new group.
He can be seen sparring with son Freddy (Jack), mentoring nephew David (Anders Keith), catching up with an old buddy turned colleague (Nicholas), his new employer Olivia (Toks Olagundoye), and forming a friendship with Freddy’s pal, Eve (Jess Salgueiro).
Discussing whether, we could eventually have Niles back on our screens, Kelsey added: ‘I mean, we have Niles’ son on the show. It would be nice to have that happen.
‘We won’t force it; we’ll see what happens. We can certainly write to it. There’s arguably a lot of people in the world that have seen Frasier, and would really sort of celebrate seeing him again.’
Well… That’s not a no…
It’s safe to say that Niles was a fan favourite throughout Frasier’s initial run, with fans clamouring for his return when the remake was ultimately announced.
However, David addressed the series in an interview with the Guardian in April, saying that he was ‘interested’ in seeing how the show turned out.
‘It’s happening, but I don’t know in what form, and I don’t know when, so I don’t know where I’ll be and what I’ll be doing,’ he said. ‘I’m certainly interested to see what they come up with.’
Frasier is available to stream on Paramount+ now.