Thoughts on staffing an Island remake

To paraphrase Mr. Roarke, ”Welcome to retro insanity.” Hoping to mine solid gold from the seemingly never-ending ’70s craze, UPN is launching a new Love Boat, NBC might resurrect Wonder Woman, and perhaps most exciting of all, ABC is developing an updated version of its 1978-84 Aaron Spelling campathon, Fantasy Island. But who can fill the white tuxedos of costars Ricardo ”Corinthian leather” Montalban and diminutive Herve ”da plane!” Villechaize? Forthwith, our casting fantasies.


DANNY DEVITO, on-the-small-side movie star/mogul. Pro: Possible guest appearance by fellow Hoffa star Jack Nicholson. Con: Possible guest appearance by fellow Taxi star Judd Hirsch.

TOMMY LEE, Motley Crue drummer, Pamela Lee boy toy, and home-movie auteur. Pro: His tattoos make him a natural for the role. Con: He’s not so diminutive, if you video watchers get my meaning.

JONATHAN LIPNICKI, the bespectacled tyke from Jerry Maguire. Pro: Master of the catchphrase (“Do you know the human head weighs eight pounds?”). Con: Impending puberty (if he’s lucky, that is).

VERDELL, the weak-bladdered, so-ugly-it’s-cute pooch (played by Jill the dog) from As Good as It Gets. Pro: Barks at planes. Con: Too good an actor.


GEORGE HAMILTON, smooth, leisurely man-about-Hollywood. Pro: That white tux would highlight his savage Bain de Soleil tan. Con: A starring role in a series would require him to actually work.

CINDY CRAWFORD, supermodel who is rumored to be under consideration for the part (no joke). Pro: Kate Moss as a guest star — her fantasy: two whole rice cakes for lunch! Con: Two words: Fair Game.

NORM MACDONALD, recently demoted Saturday Night Live “Weekend Update” wise guy. Pro: A veritable feast of B-list stars to mock. Con: No Don Ohlmeyer or O.J. Simpson cameos.

BOB DENVER, endearingly bumbling star of castaway comedy Gilligan’s Island. Pro: Don’t have to worry about him leaving the island. Con: Don’t have to worry about him leaving the island.

Fantasy Island
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