John Stamos gives the ever-changing cast of ER some new stability. With a two year contract, he will play Dr. Tony Gates. After short-lived series like Jake in Progress and Thieves, Dr. Gates will allow Stamos to play a fully evolved character by the end of next season.
Interview: John Stamos on ER
“I just love how they’ve kind of started off with a flawed guy,” said Stamos. “But there’s always kind of a safety net, like I’m taking care of my friend’s 13-year-old daughter and his widow. So there’s always something redeeming about him but at the same time, I can get away with being kind of a smart alec.”
If anything, ER’s producers and show runners have to hold Stamos back. “What I love about it is [producer] David [Zabel] kind of told me early on, I was like, ‘Let’s do this, let’s do that.’ He said, almost as a joke, ‘Slow down. Let’s walk down and screw ‘em all.’ I’m on this show for a while and I haven’t been on a show for any length of time. The other shows have been you try to cram everything into the first 10 or 6 episodes before you get cancelled. I’m going to be around ER for a good, long time so they’re taking their time to develop this character.”
The hunky docs in the ER never just focus on medicine though, so expect Gates to have a strong love life too. “He’s starting to get into a romance and David and his writers have been so smart about building obstacles. I’m taking care of my best friend’s widow and daughter and even in taking care of that, it does become sexual at times. At the same time, I’m really starting to fall for Parminder’s character, Neela, in the ER. So in the next few weeks, the romance really starts heating up and I’m kind of happy to be taking on some of the role of the romantic stuff on that show. They certainly have the hospital. I’m a good doctor and I have a lot to do with the hospital, but I feel like they’re utilizing me in the romantic arcs of the show and I think it’s good.”
For many of us, Stamos will always be Uncle Jesse. Even Bob Saget had a hard time launching a new show. Now he has a hit game show, so perhaps it was just a matter of time for the Full House veterans. “I think so but the problem is there really hasn’t been that much distance because the show is on right now somewhere. It’s on in syndication everywhere so yeah, it did take time. I immediately went to Broadway and I studied again and just tried to shed that whole thing. I’m realizing now after 10 years that it was a good thing and it holds a nice place in my heart. I think a lot of the people that were watching that show, kids, are now 22, 23 years old and watching me on ER so it’s helped that way. And yeah, I think you’re right. I think it’s just been time.”
ER airs Thursday nights at 10PM on NBC.
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