Michael Richards and Ed Begley Jr. attended San Fernando Valley College together. They then teamed as a comedy duo and played the Troubadour and other clubs. “But he decided to join the Army and when he came out, we tried our act again, but he was so funny, I just kept breaking up,” recalls Begley. “I later saw in ‘A Christmas Carol’ in San Diego with Whoopi Goldberg. In all these years that I’ve known him, I’ve never heard him utter a single racist remark. Never in 16 years. Do you think he could have kept that a secret? I think he’s doing the right thing with his apologies.”
Ed Begley Jr. and wife Rachelle are starring in “Living With Ed,” Home & Gardens Network’s reality show bowing after the Rose Bowl Game New Year’s Day, then at 10 p.m. Sundays. He calls it a “family ‘Green Ares” show in which he’s an environmentalist, which he really is. “It’s totally real,” said Ed as he was saving rooftop rain runoff in a barrel to use on the lawn. “Get it (the barrel) out of here!” wife Rachelle shouted as seven year-old daughter Hayden looked on. “I’ll paint it green,” Ed protested. And told me, “We’re not acting.” (Begley drives a Toyota RAV-4 electric car).
Further on Richards: The Improv’s Budd Friedman says Richards had performed at his club a month ago and has played there “hundreds of times. And I never had a problem with him.” When I asked if he’d have Richards back, Friedman allowed, “(if we did) we’d have a race riot on our hands.” The Improv bows a 250-seat theater on Jan. 4 at the Fantasy Springs Hotel and Casino. And on Feb. 7, Pechanga in Temecula, the largest Indian Hotel and Casino west of the Mississippi, bows an Improv 300-seat theater.