One of the classic TV show's more memorable characters was glee club director and teacher Will Schuester — or Mr. Schue — who was played by Matthew Morrison.
As it turns out, Mr. Schue was almost a totally different character entirely — and Matthew wasn't the first choice for the role, either.
Glee creator Ryan Murphy appeared on the first episode of the And That's What You REALLY Missed podcast, which is hosted by former Glee actors Kevin McHale and Jenna Ushkowitz — and he talked about the show's origins as well as its pilot script.
Ryan recalled being handed screenwriter and frequent collaborator Ian Brennan's pilot script for Glee at the gym, right at the time he was trying to figure out how to create a musical TV show for Fox.
“Like serendipity, I went to the gym and I was in a towel, and a guy went up and handed me a script and he said, ‘I had a feeling you were in show choir; am I right?’ And I was like, ‘Yeah.’ And he said, ‘My friend wrote this script, and you should read it.'”
But Ian's original script also had a much harder edge — what Ryan referred to as “the NC-17 version of show choir, with a weird protagonist who was unraveling." Plus, Mr. Schue was apparently a "crystal meth addict." "I just [needed] something optimistic," Ryan stated.
Apparently, the role of Mr. Schue was originally written for someone else entirely — specifically, Justin Timberlake. Yes, really.
“When we were writing the pilot — I’ve never really talked about this — that pilot was written for Justin Timberlake," Ryan revealed. "Mr. Schue was written for Justin.”
Apparently, there's a second part of Ryan's interview that will air soon, but in the meantime, you can check out the first part here.
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