John Stamos may be ruling the ER now, but some of his fans are still mourning the loss of Jake in Progress. It turns out, ER had wanted Stamos for a while, and ABC’s disastrous handling of Jake made it a done deal.
Interview: Stamos on Jake in Progress and ER
“I don't think it had anything to do with ER,” said Stamos. “They picked up Jake in Progress for a second season. I really went crazy with ABC. I went mad the way they handled the whole situation. I was happy to do Jake in Progress again because I loved the show. I believed in the show and I think we made a really good half hour single camera comedy. What drove me nuts was they picked it up, I made 10-11 really strong episodes and they put it on one time. So for that, it was crazy. But they weren’t holding me. I think they really wanted the show. I think they thought it would go good with Heather Graham’s show. When that didn’t work out, they pulled me and promised to put me back on. That’s why I kept making those shows and it’s infuriating that they never aired them and I was fed up with ABC and happy to get the hell out of there. I felt like NBC needed me and wanted me and I think ER had the same feelings towards me and I couldn’t wait to get over there.”
Luckily, the ER folks remained loyal, so Stamos never had to worry that finishing his Jake run would prohibit joining the cast. “It was a great feeling to know that they wanted to have me there and I did a few episodes in between the Jake in Progress thing. It’s been hovering around me for so long and I just never thought I could add as much to the show as I can now. I felt like there’s a place for me on the show and I’m not getting in the way of anybody, and I felt this when I was in the theater too when I replaced people or come to a show that was already up and going. I feel like I can come on and bring a different dynamic and kind of spin the rest of the characters into different places. If people are feeling kind of comfortable, I can kind of come in and shake stuff up. I just felt it was never the right time to do that until now so I didn’t think it would have worked as much.”