Ben Schwartz reveals the Parks and Rec scene that was too outrageous to air
Catch more from Ben Schwartz in the full episode of Entertainment Weekly: The Show, available now on the People/Entertainment Weekly Network (PEN). Go to PEOPLE.com/PEN, or download the free app on your Smart TV, mobile and web devices.
If you’ve watched Parks and Recreation, then you probably know that Ben Schwartz doesn’t appear as Jean-Ralphio in the final season premiere. Well, it turns out he was supposed to be in that season 7 opener, but his scene was cut because the character’s blonde highlights were deemed too ridiculous for the future-set episode.
“My intro is that I come in in a wheelchair with these blonde highlights, and we filmed it, and then, [co-creator] Mike Schur was like, ‘It’s just too crazy!'” said Schwartz when he appeared on Entertainment Weekly: The Show. “They’re like, ‘We haven’t seen your character, it’s supposed to be the future, and the first thing someone sees is you rolling in on a wheelchair, getting out of the wheelchair, saying, ‘Hi, I only use this to cut the line at Six Flags,'” he recalls. “It’s so intense, so we reshot for it a different episode.”
While speaking with host Lola Ogunnaike, Schwartz also said he wished Parks and Rec was on the air right now because he thinks the world could use some of Leslie Knope’s (Amy Poehler) limitless optimism. “I miss that show very much,” he said. “I think right now, in the climate of what’s happening, to have a show like that would be so fun and exciting. No matter what, Leslie Knope was the optimist. … I love the idea of that type of character and that world.”
Watch the full clip above.
Schwartz can next be heard on the Ducktales revival, which begins with a one-hour pilot on Aug. 12. The series will then premiere Sept. 23.
Parks and Recreation