Published October 15, 2012
Scott Baio is back on television with the new Nick at Nite sitcom ‘See Dad Run,’ which premiered Sunday night. The 52-year-old actor, who you may remember first starred in ‘Bugsy Malone’ with Jodie Foster, will forever be remembered as Chachi Arcola from ‘Happy Days’ and its short lived spinoff ‘Joanie Loves Chachi. The registered Republican spoke to FOX411 about his new show, his troubled former co-star Erin "Joanie" Moran, and how he attended Ronald Reagan’s funeral.
FOX411: First tell us about the new show.
Scott Baio: It’s a story of a very successful T.V. actor, America’s number one Dad, and his show comes to an end. He goes home and his wife decides she wants to go back to work on her soap opera and she leaves him with their three children. He doesn’t really know them that well because he’s been working and he’s not emotionally attached to them very well either, so he’s got to learn how to deal with them.
FOX411: You played the manny on "Charles in Charge," now the Dad. In 20 years will we see "Grandpa in Charge"?
SB: (Laughs.) We were thinking of changing the title to, ‘See Dad Run to the Home,’ in 20 years time. Hey listen, if you want to do a show like that in 20 years time, we’ll split the fee, how about that?
FOX411: Does it bug you when people call you Chachi?
SB: I don’t get it so much anymore. I get it less than you think. I got it a lot when the show was on.
FOX411: Did it drive you nuts?
SB: Not really, it all depends on how the person approaches you. If they’re being a wise guy than it’s a problem, if they’re not, then great.
FOX411: You have a five-year-old daughter. What happens if she says she wants to act?
SB: Oh that ship has sailed. She comes down the set all the time. She’s been in two episodes. She loves it, loves being around it. I’m sort of in a pickle right now trying to figure out what to do with her because I really don’t want her to be in the business.
FOX411: Does the news about Erin Moran make you sad?
SB: To be perfectly honest with you I don’t know what’s going on. People tell me certain things. I don’t know what her situation is. I have a job to do, I have a wife and child to take care of. So I don’t pay attention to things that I don’t know anything about. I’ve got my own situation to deal with.
FOX411: You were quite the player back in the day ... Pamela Anderson, Heather Locklear.
SB: I did okay for myself. I was a single man living in Hollywood. But now I’m a married guy. You do things as a boy that you don’t do as a man.
FOX411: Did you have to pry women off you?
SB: Yeah at a certain point. It all seemed kind of fun and exciting. It was a great experience.
FOX411: And no rehab trips.
SB: I had parents who were parents who put fear in me about a lot of things. I think it’s an important thing to do for a child. Plus the show I was working on, the people working on it were very clean so I was never around it. I was never intrigued by it. For some reason I had the thought that if I was lucky enough to be healthy why would I want to mess around it. Plus I was a very athletic guy. Actually honest to God, it’s so funny, it wasn’t even a thought in my head, should I try drugs.
FOX411: You’re a registered Republican. Do you think Romney is going to win?
SB: Sure I do.
FOX411: You also attended Ronald Reagan’s funeral.
SB: I campaigned for him a long time ago. When he passed away I wanted to go pay my respects. A producer A.C. Lyles for Paramount, he’s worked there for I think 80 years. He was very friendly with the Reagans and I called him and said that I wanted to go. He said, ‘Why don’t you write a letter to Mrs. Reagan?’ So I wrote a letter and faxed it over and she said, ‘We’d love to have you.’
FOX411: Do you feel like you’re part of a very small minority in Hollywood?
SB: No because it’s not as small as you think it is. The people who believe what I believe are much quieter about it.
FOX411: Because they’re scared it will hurt their career?
SB: No, I think it’s because who we are as people. We are less vocal people about what we believe and think. People can think what they want to think, I don’t go after people. I think most people I talk to, like me, are very quiet and keep to themselves, they maintain their lives and I think that’s one of our attributes.