In the 1980s, Bob Saget, a comedian, became a household name in sitcoms. “Full House”Danny Tanner plays the role of a widowed father of three. He also assumed the helm of “America’s Funniest Home Videos,” in which his family-friendly commentary made us think butter wouldn’t melt in his mouth.
But in real life, Saget — who was found dead in an Orlando hotel room on Sunday at the age of 65 — was known in showbiz circles and by comedy fans for his raunchy act and bawdy sense of humor. Saget was once a beloved actor. “whippits” — hits of nitrous oxide — on the set of “Full House,”He admitted he was “a flirter”With other women in his final years of his first marriage. He also got into drunken driving shortly after his divorce.
Friends recall Bob Saget, a filthy comedian, a great friend and a devoted dad to many. NY Post photo composite
“I saw Bob on HBO’s Rodney Dangerfield special 30 years ago,” “Entourage”The Post spoke with Doug Ellin, creator. “He was this comic that was kind of dirty, and then he did ‘Full House.’ “
“Full House” star Bob Saget poses with his television daughters.©ABC/Courtesy Everett Collection
Ellin created a hyperbolic version for HBO in 2004 before he met Saget.
“We had lunch and he said, ‘I’I will do whatever you say, except that I am broke. Do you have any questions about hookers or drug users? Yeah, that’s fine. But I don’t want to be broke.’
“There was no sensitivity to anything else, but being successful was important to him,”Saget was called Ellin by Ellin,” said Ellin. “gracious, sweet and incredibly smart.”
The role of “Entourage” — and his 2005 turn in the filthy comedy documentary “The Aristocrats” — took a jackhammer to his cheesy sitcom dad image, both shocking and endearing fans, especially a younger audience.
Saget played a hyperbolic, hyperbolic version o himself on the HBO show “Entourage”During its second season. Doug Ellin, the show’s creator, told The Post that Saget was “gracious, sweet and incredibly smart.”HBO
“I remember when ‘The Aristocrats’ came out — people couldn’t believe Bob Saget was talking that way,”Gilbert Gottfried, his friend and fellow comedian, told The Post. “But for the people who knew him, you can’t believe he talked any other way.”
In his 2014 memoir “Dirty Daddy: The Chronicles of a Family Man Turned Filthy Comedian,”He wrote about his frustration with being typecast, and asked mentor Dangerfield to give him advice.
“I told him I was sick of only doing ‘family stuff’ and wanted to move into edgier comedy but I was concerned it was too late because people have a way of branding you with what they perceive you to be,”He wrote.
In 1998, the movie was promoted. “Dirty Work,”Saget directed the show, and told Howard Stern about how he stunned live audiences with stand-up comedy.
“I’m like filthy right now … All I want to do is curse and fall down, because I’ve been on 8 o’clock television so long. It’s like comedy Tourette’s. That’s what I’m like though. I would even do the shows even though I was filthy. [‘Full House’ and ‘America’s Funniest Home Videos’]. I would get onstage and curse and stuff and people’s hair would, like, burn. ‘Children of the Corn,’Their eyes would turn back. ‘It’s Michelle’s Daddy, no!’ “
Saget’s 2014 memoir dove into his family tragedies, career and dirty comedy.
‘I guess we got high’
Saget was born in Philadelphia and moved to Norfolk, Virginia, Encino, California, then back to Philadelphia, where he graduated from high school. He wrote about his plans to become a physician. His teacher, Mrs. Zimmerman intervened and told him. “Do not become a doctor. You need to make movies and perform and write. You need to make people laugh.”He switched his Temple University major to documentary filmmaking, and then he hit the comedy circuit.
In his book, he recalls one of his earliest jokes that showed his love for blue humor. “My mother never let me go to camp as a little kid because she thought I’d get embarrassed undressing in front of little boys. But I kind of like it now … That’s not true. I like it a lot. That’s not true, I’m not a senator.”
In 1987, he got his big break. “Full House”Playing alongside John Stamos, Dave Coulier, and whose impressive flatulence Saget frequently referenced in his memoir.
Behind the scenes, the trio made raunchy, juvenile jokes all the time. They even raided the prop cupboard to do whippits, while filming scenes for Michelle Tanner’s birthday party. (Played by the Olsen Twins).
“I grabbed Dave and John and we went into the prop room backstage and locked the door … I swung open the refrigerator, and behold! Six cans of whipped cream. Reddi-wip. Nitrous oxide is dangerous. Can cause brain damage … Dave and John followed my lead and we inhaled the little bit of air still left in the cans that were meant for Michelle’s birthday cake scene. I guess we got high, don’t think so though. It was hard to tell, ’cause we were in a hurry and whipped cream started squirting everywhere.”
But Saget wasn’t really one for getting high. Saget admitted that he had tried cocaine, but wrote: “I’m anti-drugs, except the ones I take for cholesterol, anxiety, a sleep disorder and tranquilizing animals.”
Saget and Sherri Kramer, his first wife, attended the premiere of “The Silence of the Lambs”February 1, 1991 in Century City, California. They have three children together. Ron Galella Collection
In 2018, Saget married Kelly Rizzo, his second wife.
In 1982, he married Sherri Kramer, a high school sweetheart. They had three daughters, Jennifer (Aubrey), and Lara (Lara). Stern learned that the couple divorced in 1997. “We weren’t happy together.”He said: “The last couple years of our marriage I was more of a flirter than I’d ever been in my life … it wasn’t about me being famous, it was about me being an idiot.”
Stern told him that he had dated women as young 20-year-olds. In 2018, he married Kelly Rizzo (TV host), who is 23 years his junior.
However, he was content to live a simple life and indulged in dangerous behavior such as drinking and driving.
“I was a fool. One of those idiots who brags to people while intoxicated, that he can drive better than he’s drunk,”He wrote. “I repeatedly committed a sin against humanity: drinking and driving … I was divorced, dumb, sometimes drunk and the luckiest a–hole in the world for not doing anything that wound up hurting anyone.”
He blacked out driving in 2003 and rolled up on curb. But he quit drinking and driving cold turkey after a cop pulled him over for speeding on the Pacific Coast Highway, a trip he was making to retrieve his youngest daughter’s stuffed bunny she left behind at Kramer’s home. The cop gave him a warning.
“To this day, I’m appreciative of his compassion.”
Family tragedy can be a constant reminder
Saget’s character was also shaped by compassion, which was also a virtue that helped him overcome his family’s hardships and tragedies.
At 21 he was awarded the Student Academy Award for a short black-and white film. “Through Adam’s Eyes,” which followed his 7-year-old nephew’s facial reconstruction surgery.
His sister Andi, who was 34 years old, died from a brain tumor. Gay, his 44-year-old sister, died from scleroderma in 1994. This rare condition causes tissue hardening.
He directed a TV movie on ABC two years later called “For Hope”The story is about a woman in her prime who is diagnosed with the now-largely unknown disease. It was loosely based on his family’s experience and helped raise awareness for the destructive condition.
Bob Saget and Rosalyn, his parents “Dolly” and Benjamin Saget.WireImage
He was a member of the Scleroderma Research Foundation’s board of directors and hosted events that attracted A-listers such as Robin Williams, Billy Crystal, and Jimmy Fallon.
“That charity meant so much to him, and it was a beautiful event every year,”Saget roast Ellin for his 45th Birthday,” said Ellin.
Saget also wrote that losing sisters and several uncles — he told Stern that three of his uncles died of heart attacks before the age of 40 — made him “obsessed with death” at a young age.
“As you now know, many of my relatives died young,”He added, “I never pictured myself making it past my fifties.”
“I know he was 65, but he just seemed so young,”Ellin.
He did, however, shed some of his Danny Tanner-isms and he returned to his role in the 2016 Netflix reboot. “Fuller House.”
According to all accounts, he was dedicated to both his television and his real-life daughters.
“He had a very good relationship with his daughters,”Gottfried said that he was also protective over the Olsen twins.
TV writer Alan Zweibel met Saget while working on an episode of The Simpsons in 1986. “It’s Garry Shandling’s Show,”Noting that he was “very sensitive”And “ended every conversation with ‘I love you.’ ”
“Saget loved his role on ‘Full House.’ He loved every second of it — because he got to be a dad,”Zweibel told The Post. “His e-mail address was bobbydaddy.”
Saget was on a comedy tour of 22 cities at the time of his passing.
Gottfried, devastated, spoke to his friend only a week before.
“He certainly seemed happy. He was happy to get out on the roads more and be able to connect with the audience. He was pleased with the results of the previous show. We agreed. ‘I love you.’ “
Saget hosted “America’s Funniest Home Videos”In an episode from 1990, he is seen above.Disney General Entertainment Con