He may only stand at 5 feet tall, but actor Danny DeVito has reached heights most Hollywood actors could only dream of. Now at the age of 76, the longtime actor continues to find himself in-demand for major parts in film and television, as well as for an exciting new business campaign.
Danny can currently be seen alongside fellow actor and former co-star Awkwafina in a new video promoting Discord’s new campaign called “Imagine a Place.” Discord is a talk, text and video communication service that is on a mission to create space for everyone to find belonging. Originally launched back in 2015, Discord began as a space for gamers to interact and has developed over the years into a much more elaborate outlet for people of all different interests to virtually come together to enjoy activities like karaoke, study groups and much more. When speaking about Discord’s purpose and the social opportunity it has today, Danny says, “Life is like, we’re born alone and we die alone. Not to get morbid about it, but the middle part that we’re in, it should be together. That’s the idea. You need your friends. You need people around you. You need to share things. You need to be open. You need to communicate. And if that’s what we’re doing here, it’s a great thing.”
Danny even sees possible ways that Discord and his own fans might be able to directly impact the future of his hit FX series It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, where Danny plays Frank Reynolds, the inappropriately hilarious father within a group of outrageously unpredictable friends. “Go to FX and say Listen, we want to see Frank do this or that or the other thing. That would be so cool,” Danny says of his idea to be discussed on Discord. His comedy series will soon be going into its 15th season and when asked if Danny sees an end in sight for It’s Always Sunny, he quickly says, “We’re going to keep going. They’re stuck with me! I’m their father and they can’t do anything about it.” Following his comment, I jokingly tell Danny that I then look forward to season 37 of It’s Always Sunny, where he responds, “I hope! Your mouth to God’s ears.”
Even though Danny admits he is not the most technologically savvy person in the world, he is aware of his popularity on Twitter and the love of his “Trollfoot” tweets, where he often takes a photo of his foot in front of the backdrop of his latest destination. With currently 4.1 million followers on Twitter, Danny reveals how his social media stardom came about. “When Twitter started, we were doing a musical called ‘The Nightman Cometh’ which is part of the [It’s Always] Sunny show and we were touring around with a live show. We did five or six places and Twitter began and people started going You got to get on Twitter and I said, ‘What am I going to do on Twitter? I don’t know what to do.’ And the first thing I did was I wrote one tweet and it was ‘My balls are on fire’ and I said, ‘Well, I can’t keep doing that. What am I going to do?’ So I took a picture of my foot in the theater, I think, and I called it ‘Trollfoot’ because I was playing the troll in ‘The Nightman Cometh.’ I’m happy to do it. I love that people like it and they respond to it. I’m going to keep them coming, whether you like it or not.”
Danny is about to reach another milestone in his celebrated career. July 28 will mark the 25th anniversary of the theatrical release of Danny’s beloved children’s film Matilda, which he both starred in and directed. “My baby, Matilda! I had so much fun making that movie. Mara [Wilson] and all the kids that were in it. Five years ago, at the 20th [anniversary], I did a Blu-ray remaster of the movie. I actually had a garden party at my house. I invited all the people back, 20 years later. We had a tea party and what I did was I shot a little of that and I stuck it on the Blu-ray. So in the middle of the Blu-ray, there’s a little section that is the 20 years later. So now 25, we should do something because it was one of my favorite jobs with all those kids. It was a beautiful thing to do. I loved doing it.”
From Danny’s earlier days playing the hard-to-like boss on the television series Taxi (1978-1983), his iconic performance as Penguin in 1992’s Batman Returns and his recent appearance in the blockbuster film Jumanji: The Next Level (2019), Danny DeVito continues to light up both the big and small screen, knowing at a very young age that acting and Hollywood was where he wanted to be. “When I was a kid, I spent most of my time in the movie theaters. I am a movie lover. I watched movies all my life and always thought it would be really great to be a part of that, but I didn’t know how. I wasn’t like Clark Gable material or whatever. I figured like, how am I going to do this? And then one day, it just kind of like clicked into gear and you know, I love it. I’m an east coast guy from New Jersey and I came to New York to study acting and I moved out to California in 1975 because that’s where all the work was and it worked out pretty good. Taxi was 1978. It was after [One Flew Over The] Cuckoo’s Nest that I moved out [to California]. I love it out there. Hollywood is a crazy town, but it has worked out for me.”
Before we wrapped up our conversation, Danny also teased a reunion that is in the works alongside his 1988 Twins co-star Arnold Schwarzenegger. A sequel film project has been rumored for some time, with Eddie Murphy set to join their comedic brotherhood. “We’re going to make Triplets,” Danny reveals. “We’re working on it right now, we’re getting really close. We’re going to come out with Triplets very shortly. After [It’s Always] Sunny, we’re going Triplets big time. It’s going to be fun. We’ve got a good script, a really good script.”