'The Beautician and the Beast' close to Dresher's roots
February 7, 1997
Web posted at: 3:30 a.m. EST
From Correspondent Gloria Hillard
LOS ANGELES (CNN) -- The hills are alive with the sound of
... hair dryers?
Actually it's Fran Drescher in her new film, "The Beautician
and The Beast," in which she plays a beauty school teacher
recruited to teach the children of the president of a
fictitious Eastern European country.
It's kind of "The Nanny" meets the Van Trapp family of the
90s, if you will.
The role of a Spandex-wearing, nasal-voiced, big-haired
beautician wasn't a stretch for Drescher. After all, once
upon a time, the actress did the cutting and blow drying
"Yeah, I was a beautician (and) spent my thousand hours just
in case acting didn't work out," she says, "but ultimately it
did give me lots of information to write funny stuff about."
So when Drescher decided to develop a film project for
herself as a transition from her hit TV show, "The Nanny," to
the big screen, playing the idiosyncratic hair dresser wasn't
much of a stretch.
"It's very exciting," she says. "I'm starring in my first
Old hand at Hollywood
Drescher isn't a novice to the ways of film, however. In
fact, her first movie was with John Travolta in the 1977
megahit "Saturday Night Fever."
"The Beautician and The Beast" has similar star power. Co-
star Timothy Dalton, who plays the dastardly dictator Boris
Pochenko, made his film debut with Katherine Hepburn in the
1968 film "A Lion in Winter." And then there was the James
"I once went up to the North Pole and all the Eskimos came
and said 'James Bond, James Bond.' In moments like that --
when the world looks at you as this character -- it's
difficult to be yourself, to truly be yourself," Dalton says.
Instead of dealing with the intrigue and danger of a Bond
film, "The Beautician and the Beast" gave Dalton a chance to
try his hand at comedy.
"I do a lot of comedy in the theater, but I rarely do it in
the movies, so that was a thrill," he says.
For Drescher, the film meant different things.
"That fact that I'm sitting here selling a movie that rests
on my shoulders really makes me realize where I am in my
career," she says.
If things had been different, when someone yelled 'Cut!'
Drescher may have reached for a pair of scissors.
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