Stephen Colbert Tells Ryan Reynolds He Auditioned for Saved By The Bell

Stephen Colbert told Ryan Reynolds that he auditioned for Screech’s part on Saved by the Bell. Now, that sounds far-fetched, but the comedian told the story on the now-remote version of his show. The tale seemed so out there that the Deadpool star didn’t seem to believe it either. Imagine Zachary Morris talking to Screech and then it being Colbert who turned around. 2020 has been pretty wild so far, but there are other timelines where stranger things happen. The real kicker is that the performer was told that his version of the character was too over-the-top for the role.

“My first professional audition, 1986, they came to Chicago,” Colbert began. “I was a student at Northwestern University, and I don’t know, someone had seen me do something. Somebody had scouted me at school. I got called down to a casting agent on Michigan Avenue in Chicago. I walk in and they hand me the [script]. I was auditioning for the part of…was the character’s name Screech? I auditioned for Screech. No, I’m not joking.”

But this wild story has more dimensions as the audition ended up being a formative teaching moment for Colbert. There is nuance to even something as brash as Saved by the Bell.

“I’m not kidding. I’m not making this up. Imagine how that character ended up in the broadcast. They said to me, ‘There’s a term you’re going to need to know about as a professional. It’s called over-the-top. You just went over-the-top. Don’t do that anymore.’ I saw the subtle, I saw the subtly interplay and power dynamics that Dustin Diamond brought to that role.”


Reynolds cracked, “Screech was not a nuanced role.” That may be true, but the revelation was already out there in the open. For all the Saved by the Bell fans out there, you are in luck as a reboot is coming to screens in the near future with some of the main cast in tow. They were in production before the coronavirus pandemic picked up and there should be more news on it after this entire situation resolves itself. For now, you can sit and wonder what Stephen Colbert as Screech would be like. Maybe it’s for the best that things turned out as they did.

Could you imagine Colbert on Saved by the Bell? Let us know in the comments

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