A few days ago, the folks at Vulture posted a vintage oddball video starring comedian Gilbert Gottfried. And I thought, ‘I’ve seen that before! Where have I seen it?’ And then I remembered, our very own Laughspin contributor Jeffrey Gurian posted it months ago on YouTube. So I asked him to explain the origin of the video. Check it out below, all in Gurian’s words.
This film is called “Seeing is Believing” and stars Gilbert Gottfried as Nat Snatz, a guy in search of X-ray vision, and Camille Grammer of the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills before she was Camille Grammer, playing the sexy nurse.
In those days she was Camille Donatacci, and we nicknamed her “Camille Don’t Touch Me” because she was gorgeous but untouchable. She was waiting for the right guy! She was a model/actress in those days and a good friend of mine.
I had been asked by a producer named Frank Chindamo to create some short films for Playboy TV, and I called on a few of my famous friends to be in them. Gilbert starred in one, Richard Belzer starred in another, and Pat Cooper starred in a third. Gilbert was hysterical, as always.
I wrote the script, in which Gilbert is a guy trying to pick up women in a bar but is having terrible luck for two reasons.
1. He’s wearing glasses that are like microscopes, and he has to focus them by hand in order to see clearly.
2. He has the worse pick-up lines imaginable. He would walk up to girls and say, “Would you like to see some pictures of my furniture?” and then pull out photos of his desk, his bed, his dresser, etc.
That’s the line I wrote in the script, but the producer made us change it to, “Would you like to see some pictures of my computer?” which he thought was more topical, since computers were kind of new then. The producers in LA and I had a big fight about which line was funnier. I fought for furniture and lost!
Anyway, Nat Snatz’s friend, (comic Tommy Koenig) suggests to him that he get new glasses and for a few extra bucks he could actually get X-ray vision. Nat Snatz is all excited because he thinks with X-ray vision he’ll be able to see through women’s clothing. Watch the film and see what happens!
In those days most actresses didn’t work out like they did today, so we had to use real topless dancers to be extras in the films. One night I took Gilbert to a place called Goldfingers, which in those days was the premiere strip club in town, and the club where we shot the strip club scenes with Gilbert trying to pick up chicks. They were very excited to have him and ushered us into the VIP room, obviously expecting that a star like Gilbert would order champagne. But when they asked him what he wanted to drink, he said he’d have a glass of water! Perfect Gilbert story.