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Posted at 11:42 AM ET, 03/24/2008

And Now, a Word or Two About David Schwimmer

By Liz Kelly

Remember when David Schwimmer ruled Must See TV as a major, if slightly sappy and unlikely, heartthrob? Some of us -- certainly not me -- coo'ed and ahhhed over his years-long courtship of Jennifer Aniston's Rachel on "Friends." (Here's a particularly barfy montage of their love affair.) He was a paleontologist, he had a pet monkey, he never gave up, he was so sweet. Blech.


The fashion-challenged David Schwimmer. (AP)

Don't get me wrong. I like the guy okay. He totally had a handle on playing a schlumpy, depressed romantic. But his post-"Friends" career has been limited to voice work in the animated feature "Madagascar" and mercy directing a couple of episodes of "Joey." Until now. Friday marks his debut as a feature film director. Sadly, no longer assisted by network stylists, Schwimmer is more heartache than heartthrob.

So, being that I'm in a magnanimous kind of mood today, a little free advice is in order.

Listen up, Schwimmer:

-- Get a stylist -- and quick. You look like a bouncer at a Moscow nightclub . Or what I imagine one would look like, having never frequented one. You are not Schwimmer in that get-up. You are Vasiliy and you want my rubles.

-- Lose the facial hair. I can picture the bottle of Drakkar Noir on your dresser. There's just something kind of Color Me Badd about what you've got going on.

-- Floppy hair is so 1999. That mop has you looking all Hugh Grant-y in a low-budget, overly-oiled kind of way. But -- pssst -- not even Hugh is rocking the flop-top anymore.

-- Play against type. While sporting a new, polished look in your private life, let audiences see your craft in a new light. I'm thinking South Texas serial killer or "Too Wong Foo" here. Mix it up. The directing thing may not work out.

-- Look into Scientology. It's done wonders for formerly presumed-DOA careers (see Alley, Kirstie) and, judging by Katie Holmes's metamorphosis, the stylists are top drawer. Just don't agree to any buddy movies co-starring Queen Latifah.

Okay, go ahead. Have at me. Just remember, everything I say, I say out of love.

By Liz Kelly  | March 24, 2008; 11:42 AM ET
Categories:  Celebrities, Fashion  
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Comments

I have a David Schwimmer first hand encounter to report (7 years later).

When I was in college I spent the summer as a docent in an art museum in the small college town. That same town hosts a summer theater festival that attracts several (ok 1-2) A-C list stars each year. I was waiting to lead a bus tour of old ladies when DS walks in the door to the Museum and since Friends was huge then and I was a dork I ooohed and pointed at him. Of course the old ladies had no idea who he was. During my tour he was wandering through the museum and I kept trying to be extra witty so that he might decide to join us but no luck.

I was mostly surprised that he's not as tall as one might think (I would guess 5'10" tops) but on the show he's so much taller than the rest of the cast.

Later I did hear that he hit on one of my friends in the bar and was acting a bit sleezy but I always appreciated that he had an interest in the visual arts as well.

Posted by: sjcpeach | March 24, 2008 12:25 PM | Report abuse

he starred in a movie called Breast Men. He was a corrupt doctor who cheated on his wife w/his patients (after he did their breast enlargements).The best part of the movie was when his fancy sports car got t-boned by a dump truck.

Posted by: no_bs_4me | March 24, 2008 12:33 PM | Report abuse

he starred in a movie called Breast Men. He was a corrupt doctor who cheated on his wife w/his patients (after he did their breast enlargements).The best part of the movie was when his fancy sports car got t-boned by a dump truck.

Posted by: no_bs_4me | March 24, 2008 12:34 PM | Report abuse

David should definitely lose the facial hair, but I think he should stick with directing. There's a 50/50 chance David maybe improve as a director. Plus, I like that he trying to avoid starring in lame romantic comedies unlike Jennifer Anniston.

Posted by: Lisa1 | March 24, 2008 12:44 PM | Report abuse

I don't think the facial hair is a bad idea, just not in its current incarnation. Maybe he should go Joey Fatone-style with it. OK, maybe not.

Posted by: surlychick | March 24, 2008 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Its the scarf that I think is the biggest problem in this outfit. Sure his hair is oily but the jacket would almost be ok without the scarf

Posted by: bahston | March 24, 2008 1:12 PM | Report abuse

Liz, I must commend you for the Color Me Badd reference. You just took me back to 6th grade giggling about a song with the word sex in the title.

Posted by: Sweetie | March 24, 2008 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Schwimmer played a major early-series role in Band Of Brothers as Herbert Sobel, the first commanding officer to lead Easy Company. There were definitely certain elements of Ross in the role...Sobel was unlikeable, bossy, lacked self-confidence in actual military manuevers but was a tyrant in training, and there are one or two moments in the series where you half-expect Schwimmer to break out into Ross's puny crying routine, but he also was pitch-perfect as the kind of leader that caused the company to unite in their hatred for the guy. In that respect, I have to give him credit where it's due.

Posted by: 23112 | March 24, 2008 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Actually, at first glance, the photo reminded me of Justin Long (who IS sporting the floppy hair look).

That's something he should exploit, as Justin Long is generally a loved celeb.

As for him on Friends....meh. I just couldn't get past a 20-something paleontologist who appeared to have a high-level curator job at one of the most prestigious museums in the world...instead of being a lab grunt or sweating out a post doc while trying to find a more full-time paying gig SOMEWHERE.

That, and about a million other things that made that character *not* a paleontologist.

Though I do have to admit I howled when his character was introduced. I dated a fellow paleo-type once whose wife left him for another woman. I couldn't catch my breath for about five minutes...

Posted by: Chasmosaur | March 24, 2008 1:26 PM | Report abuse

See, I thought that he was channeling his inner-Keaneau Reeves.

Like, whoa, dude.

Posted by: 16828 | March 24, 2008 1:39 PM | Report abuse

A little bit of mindless trivia, since someone brought up his role in Band of Brothers. Simon Pegg, who's in Run Fat Boy Run, played DS's asst in Band of Brothers.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 24, 2008 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Props to Schwimmer for the later years of Friends when they were mainly past the Ross/Rachel thing. As the show went on his character became more and more unhinged and he is a fairly deft physical comedian which added a lot to the unraveling of Ross.

Posted by: BDL | March 24, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

He really does look like his name is Vasiliy and if you don't have rubles you're not getting in.

The few times I watched Friends (nothing else was on and it was a very brief viewing) I could not stand Schwimmer's character for anything. He should have grown a pair and moved on. Goodness the sappyness was painful.

Posted by: petal | March 24, 2008 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Now see, I look at that picture and imagine he's trying (emphasis on "trying") to channel Adrian Brody. I can't recall if I've ever seen Brody with face fuzz, but the greasy-floppy hair and the scarf - definitely striving for "artistically significant heart throb."

And Liz, is it _really_ fair to tempt Schwimmer to exchange his soul and 51% of his net worth for a potential career boost? I say better sad than creepy. (Also, I wouldn't give an across the board thumbs up to Scientologist stylists...please review Travolta's hair.)

Posted by: Omaha | March 24, 2008 2:57 PM | Report abuse

i'm going to give DS props for his stint on "curb your enthusiasm". he held his own with larry david and he was, dare i say it?, FUNNY! it worked! he and larry brought down "the producers"!

Posted by: wats | March 24, 2008 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Who is Justin Long?
I am not kidding, I have no idea who Justin Long is. What has he been in?
Movies, TV, Singer??

Posted by: DW | March 24, 2008 3:01 PM | Report abuse

I had a comment and then Omaha had to go and mention Travolta's hair and now I'm having what appear to be flashbacks too horrific for me to concentrate on anything else. Guess this means I get the rest of the day off.

Posted by: Juicy | March 24, 2008 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Who is Justin Long?
I am not kidding, I have no idea who Justin Long is. What has he been in?
Movies, TV, Singer??

Posted by: DW | March 24, 2008 03:01 PM


He's the Mac guy in those commercials

Posted by: Anonymous | March 24, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

DW, next time try www.imdb.com.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 24, 2008 3:12 PM | Report abuse


Ideas for reviving the Schwimmeister's career:

1. "Rounders II, the Prequel." Schwimmer could play a younger version of John Malkovich's character, Teddy KGB.

2. "The Pallbearer Two." Schwimm could resolve all of those unanswered questions left open by the original and satisfy the dozens of viewers who have seen the movie on HBO.

3. Slowly fade into well-deserved and unduly-delayed obscurity.

Posted by: Worm | March 24, 2008 3:24 PM | Report abuse

What funny timing on this post -- I have no idea what prompted it, but this morning I was trying to remember when Friends went off the air and whether anyone on the show other than Jennifer Anniston and Courtney Cox have gone on to star in other TV shows or movies. I remember that Lisa Kudrow had a short-lived sitcom a couple of years back. I don't usually spend a lot of time thinking about the Friends actors -- didn't even when the show was on -- but you answered my question about this one, Liz. Thanks.

Posted by: eerie | March 24, 2008 3:26 PM | Report abuse

sorry liz...
but David Schwimmer in a dress is well up my list of 'remember - that which has been seen cannot be unseen - avoid at all costs'

and to quote from your Too Wong Foo clip...
"When it comes down to that age old question - Style or Substance?" Schwimmer demonstrates there's a third option - neither.

Posted by: Quintilus Varus | March 24, 2008 3:28 PM | Report abuse

After seeing the preview for this movie I have to say I think it looks pretty good! I'll keep my fingers crossed for you DS!

Posted by: sjcpeach | March 24, 2008 3:31 PM | Report abuse

I also have high hopes for this movie, it was co-written by Simon Pegg who also did Hot Cops and that zombie movie, both very funny.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 24, 2008 3:36 PM | Report abuse

I cannot access imdb at work. I can get the Washington Post and a few other sites, but most are blocked.
David Schwimmer should have millions of dollars left over from Friends and is still earning big bucks with his residuals. The Mac guy made a buck fifty and will probably be a waiter at the local Olive Garden within 2 years. No comparison.

Posted by: DW | March 24, 2008 4:01 PM | Report abuse

also in Live Free Die Harder. Not a great movie but its pretty good to be part of that franchise. the exposure should be good. from commercial to major movie....not bad

Posted by: Mac guy | March 24, 2008 4:22 PM | Report abuse

Look I'm no Justin Long fan, but please if you don't know anything, don't say (or rather write) anything about someone or something you know nothing about.

Below is Justin Long's IMDB resume, oh and he's Drew Barrymore's boyfriend du jour.

Drag Me to Hell (2009) (pre-production)
Still Waiting... (2008) (filming) (rumored) .... Dean
Planet 51 (2008) (filming) .... Lem
Serious Moonlight (2009) (post-production) .... Todd
He's Just Not That Into You (2008) (post-production) .... Alex
Patriotville (2008) (post-production) .... Chase Revere
Strange Wilderness (2008) .... Junior
Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story (2007) (uncredited) .... George Harrison
Alvin and the Chipmunks (2007) (voice) .... Alvin
Terra (2007) (voice) .... Senn
Live Free or Die Hard (2007) .... Matt Farrell
Just Add Water (2007) .... Spoonie
Idiocracy (2006) .... Doctor
Accepted (2006) .... Bartleby Gaines
The Break-Up (2006) .... Christopher
"That '70s Show" .... Andrew Davis
"King of the Hill" .... Troy
"Campus Ladies" .... Connor (1 episode, 2006)
Dreamland (2006) .... Mookie
The Sasquatch Dumpling Gang (2006) .... Zerk Wilder
Herbie Fully Loaded (2005) .... Kevin
Waiting... (2005) .... Dean
Robin's Big Date (2005) .... Robin
Wake Up, Ron Burgundy: The Lost Movie (2004) (V) .... Chris Harken
Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story (2004) .... Justin
Hair High (2004) (voice) .... Dwayne
Raising Genius (2004) .... Hal Nestor
"Ed" .... Warren P. Cheswick / ... Jeepers Creepers II (2003) .... Darry Jenner
Crossroads (2002/I) .... Henry
Jeepers Creepers (2001) .... Darry Jenner
Happy Campers (2001) .... Donald
Galaxy Quest (1999) .... Brandon

Posted by: Anonymous | March 24, 2008 4:29 PM | Report abuse

so sorry to have offended the great and mighty who think they know everything because they have access to imdb.com.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 24, 2008 4:36 PM | Report abuse

Yikes, anonymous poster! Why the attitude? It's perfectly acceptable to say what someone is most famous for (in Justin Long's case, being the mac guy) without listing their entire resume.

Posted by: h3 | March 24, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

(I meant anon at 4:29, not anon at 4:36, who is perfectly justified in his/her irritation.)

Posted by: h3 | March 24, 2008 4:45 PM | Report abuse

"Look I'm no Justin Long fan..."


WHAT?!

Posted by: Anonymous | March 24, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

This is the male Jennifer Aniston without the luck of marrying Brad Pitt. So sad, so has-been. Miss Aniston should be thankful basking in Brad's glory for long 7 years.

Posted by: jenfraud | March 24, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Maybe if DW hadn't made this asinine comment:
"The Mac guy made a buck fifty and will probably be a waiter at the local Olive Garden within 2 years. No comparison.", I wouldn't have felt the need to list his entire resume. To be honest I don't think I'd ever seen any of the projects JL has been in and considering some of things he's been in, probably never will.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 24, 2008 5:04 PM | Report abuse

Maybe since he has a big feature film a stylist is just around the corner. Someone mentioned that it was the scarf that did this outfit in...scarf or tie. could be one of those skinny 80's ties, tied loose to look cool.

Posted by: back to DS | March 24, 2008 5:20 PM | Report abuse

The fact that we're all commenting on David Schwimmer is sad in itself. I never personally understood his appeal, yet he obviously has his defenders here!

Justin Long is a dozen years younger than DS (I read imdb too! Look at me!), so the floppy-hair comparison doesn't really work, does it?

Justin's a better actor too (though it's all relative, I suppose).

Posted by: td | March 24, 2008 5:25 PM | Report abuse


I'm not a Scientologist but it sounds great, maybe it could help the people who are atacking it with their crimes too!

Posted by: Bruce Gupta Reyes | March 24, 2008 7:08 PM | Report abuse

He made it onto the Fug Girls' site. www.gofugyourself.com

Posted by: sappho | March 25, 2008 7:44 AM | Report abuse

The Sasquatch Dumpling Gang? WTF?

Posted by: chocolatetiara | March 25, 2008 8:26 AM | Report abuse

After that list of what Justin Long has been in I say once again he will probably be a local waiter at the Olive Garden within 2 years.

That may be the workst actors resume of After that list of what Justin Long has been in I say once again he will probably be a local waiter at the Olive Garden within 2 years.

That may be the worst actors resume of all time.

Posted by: dw | March 25, 2008 8:35 AM | Report abuse

After that list of what Justin Long has been in I say once again he will probably be a local waiter at the Olive Garden within 2 years.

That may be the worst actors resume of After that list of what Justin Long has been in I say once again he will probably be a local waiter at the Olive Garden within 2 years.

That may be the worst actors resume of all time.

Posted by: dw | March 25, 2008 8:35 AM | Report abuse

Liz. I love you. This is the best thing ever.

Well, the best thing so far for a Tuesday morning at 9:30 a.m.

Posted by: Georgetown | March 25, 2008 9:29 AM | Report abuse

Simon Pegg, "that zombie movie" - Sean Of The Dead. Not 'just' a zombie movie, also a romantic comedy, buddy flick, etc. The actor who played David in Sean Of The Dead will also be in Run Fatboy Run.

Posted by: boston liz | March 25, 2008 9:45 AM | Report abuse

That first-hand encounter with Schwimmer is funny because a woman I used to work with had one as well. She's pretty -- long blonde hair, blue eyes, around 35 yrs. old (at the time)...
She and her friends saw him at a bar in L.A. They were basically hanging out with each other and ignoring him though he was standing right behind them. When he interrupted to ask if he could buy them a drink, they politely said "no thank you" and went back to chatting with each other. To which he replied "Do you know who I AM?"

Posted by: Anonymous | March 25, 2008 3:41 PM | Report abuse

David Schwimmer is a dork. And he's looking a lot like SJP with a beard in that picture.

Posted by: 3dogmom | March 25, 2008 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Oh yeah, Scientology has done WONDERS for Kirstie Alley and Katie Holmes.

Alley can't get anything but fat commercials, and even at that, apparently can't follow the script.

And the last actual entertainment she took a crack at, her Showtime series, crashed and burned and that was simply about her being a fat actress. Not exactly a stretch.

Meanwhile, Katie Holmes went from being a hottie who successfully transitioned from "Dawson's Creek" into filmdom, until she became the cult's Patty Hearst, at which time she went Stepford with a fullblown eyes-glazed look, morphed into a baby incubator and clothes horse, and appeared in a film that opened Friday and closed Sunday.

What world are you living in?

Posted by: filmex | March 26, 2008 4:41 AM | Report abuse

ok..so i read thru all the posts and i really don't understand the hostility for david. holy crap. yeah, he's not been mega famous, but i assume he's making a living for himself..back off!

Posted by: kristen | May 3, 2008 5:04 PM | Report abuse

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