Chris Elliott’s devotion to David Letterman was so strong, he turned down his first chance at Saturday Night Live to stay on The Late Show. “At the time, I think the spin on it was, well Dave is giving me my own little spotlight every week, he’s calling me by name, Chris Elliott, and I’m getting recognition because my name is out there every week,” Elliott told The Daily Beast. “That’s what I told people. But I think the real reason was maybe fear of SNL, but then also knowing that Dave will appreciate that I’m staying.” When Elliott eventually did go to SNL, it was only for one year where he felt totally disempowered. Perhaps that’s why Elliott cried when he heard the news that Letterman was quitting his long-running talk show. Elliott was filming season one of Schitt’s Creek when he heard. “I swear to God I cried,” he said, “I met my wife at Letterman, I started my career there, I met my best friend Adam Resnick there. Dave gave me the job, gave me the income to, at a very young age, to set up a household, to own a home, to get married, to have kids.” Those kids now have careers of their own. Bridey Elliott’s film Clara’s Ghost stars the entire Elliott fam, including wife Paula in her acting debut.
Chris Elliott. Photo: Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images