Eugene Levy reveals why he nearly turned down American Pie role

The Canadian star discussed his initial distaste for the film on The Graham Norton Show.
The Canadian star discussed his initial distaste for the film on The Graham Norton Show.

Eugene Levy has said he initially turned down the role of Noah Levenstein in the American Pie films because the script was “really raunchy”.

The Canadian actor, who more recently co-created and starred in the hit sitcom Schitt’s Creek, saw the coming-of-age teen comedy as the kind of film he would personally want to avoid watching.

However, the 76 -year-old was won over by those behind project after they allowed him to tweak the character.

Graham Norton Show – London
Eugene Levy with fellow guests Dame Judi Dench, Hugh Jackman, Michael B Jordan and host Graham Norton (Matt Crossick/PA)

Levenstein was the awkward yet supportive father of the sexually inexperienced lead character of Jim, who suffers various embarrassments as he struggles through his teenage years and into adulthood.

Appearing on The Graham Norton Show, Levy said: “The script was really raunchy and I thought, ‘I honestly would not want to see this film so why I would want to be in it’.

“After we improvised the role and I suggested he should be the type of dad that no teenager would want to hang out with, I agreed to do it.”

Levy admitted he also tried to turn down his new Apple TV+ series The Reluctant Traveller, in which he visits exotic locations around the world.

He added: “I said no originally because what they didn’t know when they offered me the job is that I am not fond of travelling. I don’t hate it, but it is a pain.

“By the time you get through airport security I am ready to go home. I am not a very adventurous person, but I did go to some amazing places, and it was a pretty nice gig.”

The Graham Norton Show airs on BBC One and iPlayer on Friday at 10.40pm.