David Letterman reveals reason he didn’t get a role in ‘Airplane!’

David Letterman
Photo credit Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images

David Letterman knew he wasn’t destined to be a star on the big screen.

In new book. “Surely You Can’t Be Serious: The True History of Airplane!,” by directors David Sucker, Jim Abrahams, and Jerry Zucker, a behind-the-curtain look is given into the making of the hit 1980 comedy. Included in the pages is the story of Letterman having a not so great audition.

Letterman gives account of his disastrous audition in the book and tells about the directors then coming on his late night show and playing the audition live, according to an excerpt from the book on EW.

“I get out there, and they had set up a cockpit for the aircraft with chairs,” Letterman recalled. “I had a chair, and there was another chair where the copilot would be. We did the scene once, and then they came in and gave me some notes, and then we did it maybe two more times. And I kept saying all along, ‘I can’t act, I can’t act, I can’t act,’ and then one of them came to me after the addition and said, ‘You’re right: you can’t act!’”

The book will hit shelves on Oct. 3 and contains more interviews and extra information about the casting of the movie, including stories about Sigourney Weaver and Caitlin Jenner. Leslie Nielsen pranks on set feature as well.

“They were really nice to consider me for a film,” Letterman said.

Featured Image Photo Credit: Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images