Paul Dooley

Dancing with John Travolta, Paul Dooley is dapper in “Hairspray!”

Dancing with John Travolta, Paul Dooley is dapper in “Hairspray!”

I want to talk about Toluca Lake’s Paul Dooley (I always want to talk about Paul Dooley). What a nifty thing talking with Paul Dooley is! We met last week at Chez Nous to talk about his film Head Over Heels. Although appearing in an infinite number of films and television roles, this is the first film Paul has written and directed. Awesome!
We also talked about awe. He spent a lifetime in awe of Buster Keaton, and I’m in awe of Paul. I’m fanatical about not talking during a movie but when I spot him I poke [poor David]and chipperly whisper, “Paul Dooley.” Awe…

“Head Over heels”

Premiering at the ArcLight Hollywood this Sunday, October 24th (at 5:30pm), as a part of the Hollywood Film Festival, Head Over Heels will be shown in the festival’s Short Program (#4). I am eager to see this. I don’t want to be a spoiler but feet/shoes take a big part in this production. With a tongue in cheek, laces and all, Head Over Heels is a Fallen Arches production. Produced by Ron Dunn and our hero (rarely a heel) Paul Dooley.
Although this is a short film, it is not short on talent. The cast of comedy favorites includes Tim Conway and Harvey Korman, Bob Balaban, Jeffrey Tambor, Winnie Holzman and Paul Dooley (hooray!). If you do not know any of these people, Google them now… step on it!!! Superb talent in a story that will tap your blues away. The story has Johnny, a shoe salesman at Shuster’s Footwear, falling in love with a customer (a no-no in shoe biz). Rose is different; she is charming, beautiful and, best of all, she bought the first pair of shoes that she tried on. Love at first sight. There’s a proposal, an acceptance and dashed hopes. Drama. False accusations. Prison! Eviction. Amnesia. You’ll have to be on your toes and keep your eye on the ball. Surprises still await you. (A footnote from Paul Dooley: “It’s the classic Hollywood plot. Boy meets girl. Boy loses girl. Boy goes to jail. Girl loses memory. Boy gets out. Can’t find girl. Boy, is he upset.”)
Don’t worry, Paul Dooley will save them—he is a king of happy endings. He has brought us heartfelt smiles in Breaking Away as the perplexed yet dutiful dad. He pranced in the merry madness with the corps of comedy in Waiting for Guffman and A Mighty Wind. He was Robert Altman’s choice to be Carol Burnett’s husband (and father of the bride) in A Wedding. He fathered some fine actresses after he earned critical acclaim as Molly Ringwood’s distracted yet sympathetic father in Sixteen Candles. Including Helen Hunt, Toni Collette, Mia Farrow and Julia Roberts (in Runaway Bride). And Paul Dooley was ‘Wimpy’ in Popeye. Wimpy, just the name alone is reassuring. On television, besides unending appearances, Paul had reoccurring roles on ER, Grace Under Fire, My So Called Life, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Once and Again, Curb Your Enthusiasm and as the out-of-the-closet father in HBO’s Dream On, for which he won an Emmy nomination. His feisty judge on The Practice brought him a second Emmy nomination.
Paul Dooley doesn’t act like he is some big deal but if the shoe fits? Which reminds me, this is to talk about Paul’s film Head Over Heels and to tickle your sentiment about some of the unforgettable performances that Paul Dooley gifted us. As far as entertaining, he toes the mark.


“Oh foot!” as Ado Annie once said. I’ve used up my word allotment and I haven’t gotten to Winnie yet. Help! Paul Dooley and his most talented wife, Winnie Holzman, are residing artists here in Toluca Lake, and they have enough star power to lighten our hearts. So, I’m aiming on a “One on One” in a near future Tolucan Times. We want to know where he came from and how he got here. And how he got Winnie? So hooray for Paul Dooley and, in spite of everything, let’s give him a foot… uh, hand. We’ll talk…

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Talk with Jackie

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