With over 200 credits to his name and 11 pages on his IMdB profile — that’s right, 11 pages — you would think that Ed Begley Jr. was ready for retirement. Not even close. He's got a homegrown business, and three movies in the queue. Now, the man behind such memorable roles as Dr. Victor Ehrlich in St. Elsewhere, Hiram Gunderson on Six Feet Under, and most recently, Dean Cyrus O’Dell on Veronica Mars, is now taking on reality TV in his new show on HGTV, Living with Ed.
In Living with Ed, Begley demonstrates how a few simple changes to our household living will not only save the environment, but also save you money. The show also features Ed’s wife Rachelle, whose long showers and trips to the mall become points of contention on the show. Because really, what reality show would be complete without a little drama?
During our hour with Ed, we discussed the new show, Begley's Best, and some of his more memorable roles.
How would you describe Living with Ed?
It’s kind of like Green Acres for 2006, with one person (myself) who wants to live a very simple lifestyle, like Eddie Albert did in Green Acres. My wife is more the consumer than me. She likes to go shopping, and she likes tanning booths, and she likes lots of stuff that’s just not for me. It’s kind of a funny and interesting relationship we have, that I think makes for entertaining television. I’d like to think that I’m winning her over, over time. I said, "Look, your thing is aesthetics — you want it to look nice. I’m with you on that, but if it looks nice and can save energy too, then what’s wrong with that?"
Is it true that you time your wife’s showers on the show?
She does take very long showers. We did it for the effect of the show. We don’t normally time her showers. I wanted to prove in front of the cameras how long she’s in there. Then we had a stopwatch you could see how long she was in there. Because she always kind of denied that she was in there a long time.