If there’s one good thing that came from 2017, it’s the return of Will & Grace to NBC, over a decade after the original run aired its finale. As much as we loved to see Eric McCormack, Debra Messing, Sean Hayes, and Megan Mullally return to our screens, nothing beats the original. It had all the late ‘90s/early aughts humor and celebrity guests that kept us watching in the first place.
— Eric McCormack (@EricMcCormack) February 7, 2018
From Cher to Janet Jackson to Jennifer Lopez, the TV friend group probably has anecdotes to last years. The cast recently spilled some tea about those A-list cameos. At a Q this week in London, Hayes and Mullally agreed that their favorite guest had to be Matt Damon, who played a straight man pretending to be gay in order to land a spot on the New York Gay Men’s Chorus that Hayes’ Jack was also up for.
“I love Matt,” Hayes said. “He’s such a good guy.”
“Me too,” Mullally added. “I love him in many senses.”
Hayes also shared a particularly brutal story about Madonna, who played Karen’s (Mullally) potential roommate in one episode.
“I don’t know why I’m telling this story,” he prefaced. “She was wonderful. She came in, did the table read, and was great. I know she was nervous, so to make her feel good, I was praising her. I was like, ‘That’s funny when you do that!’ and ‘That’s really great!’ She said, quote: ‘Thank you. I live for your approval.’ I was like, ‘Oh my god, my idol, she hates me!’”
Just had a blast reuniting with @cheyennejackson (aka, “Young Joe” for the Broadway folks 😉) here at the latest episode taping for @WillAndGrace. 😊 #TheDevilandYoungJoe #WillAndGrace pic.twitter.com/VIz9WMMKAa
— Sean Hayes (@SeanHayes) January 17, 2018
Making an appearance on The Graham Norton Show with McCormack, Messing also had a Madonna story to share.
“Madonna didn’t have a clue who we were, and she could not remember our names,” she said. “So, I told her mine was Rachel. She said, ‘Really? That is my Kabbalah name,’ I said like, ‘How about that!’ so for the rest of the week, she called me Rachel. When she finally realized that wasn’t my name, she sent me roses with a note written to ‘Dear Debra.’”
“The same thing happened to me,” McCormack added. “And she sent flowers and a note saying, ‘If my husband would let me, I’d tattoo your name on my arm.’”
McCormack also revealed how he got a cameo out of Elton John, who appeared at the end of one episode as himself, an apparent member of the gay mafia.
“I grew up with David Furnish (Elton’s husband) so that’s how Elton ended up on the show,” he said. “David called one day to say he was in town so I invited him to dinner and he brought Elton with him. I was trying to be cool but had had just enough wine to ask him to christen our new piano.”
Perhaps we can hope for a return from some of our favorite celeb guests with the show’s revival.