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John Larroquette has had a lot of memorable roles in a career that's spanned decades, and he's revisiting one of them this week with the premiere of Night Court on NBC, in which he'll reprise his Emmy-winning role as laughable lawyer Dan Fielding. For horror fans, though, Larroquette will always be remembered as the ominous narrator from The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, a role which saw him take an unorthodox form of payment for his services.
Speaking to Parade ahead of Night Court's premiere, Larroquette confirmed a longstanding rumor that he performed the opening narration of the 1974 horror classic in exchange for a little bit of marijuana from the film's director, Tobe Hooper.
“Totally true,” Larroquette said. “He gave me some marijuana or a matchbox or whatever you called it in those days. I walked out of the [recording] studio and patted him on the back side and said, 'Good luck to you!'"
Larroquette clarified that he didn't just walk into a recording studio with the promise of a little weed for his time. Hooper was a friend dating back to their encounters in Colorado together in 1969, and asked the young actor to lend his deep, commanding voice to the project as a favor.
“Tobe heard I was in town and asked for an hour of my time to narrate something for this movie he just did,” Larroquette recalled.
So, Larroquette did the job, and his narration proved an unsettling beginning to one of the most influential horror films of all time. The narration, and Larroquette's reading of it, added a little credence to the sense that viewers were watching a true story unfolding in horrifying fashion, and though his contribution was small, horror fans have never forgotten. And he's since reprised the role in sequels, with actual money in the offers this time.
“It’s certainly the one credit that’s stuck strongly to my resume," Larroquette said.
But despite that years-long involvement in one of horror's most memorable franchises, Larroquette also confirmed that he has never seen any of the Texas Chainsaw films, as he's "not a big horror movie fan."
The Texas Chain Saw Massacre is now streaming on Peacock. Night Court premieres Tuesday night on NBC.