How Sinbad Almost Lost Out on A Different World Role

By Alyssa Ray Jun 22, 2021 1:00 PMTags
Watch: How Bill Cosby Saved Sinbad's Job on Famous Sitcom

How different would A Different World have been without Sinbad?

In this clip from the Thursday, June 24 episode of E!'s Reunion Road Trip, the 64-year-old comedian reveals to his former co-stars that he almost didn't book A Different World. Looking fondly back at his time on the NBC sitcom, Sinbad, who played Coach Walter Oakes between 1987 and 1991, shares how he went from a stand-up comic to an on-camera personality.

"I gotta admit…I was scared," he expresses. "Now y'all don't understand, Different World was like, ooh!"

At this moment, Sinbad makes a big reveal: he first auditioned for the show as the warm-up comic. "This is what I never told y'all," he continues. "I heard that they were looking for a comic to warm up the audience."

Despite not knowing what the job entailed, the legendary comedian reveals he decided to go for it anyway. "I had never warmed up a studio audience," he tells the Reunion Road Trip camera. "So, I was lying."

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In conversation with his castmates, Sinbad notes how he claimed to have worked as a warm-up comic for a series of shows. However, he was found out when he claimed to have worked on Magnum, P.I.

In response to this admission, Jasmine Guy comments, "Magnum, P.I. doesn't have no warm-up. It's a drama!"

Per Sinbad, that's exactly what the casting agent said. "I'm doing well, and then I said I warmed up Magnum, P.I.," he recalls in a confessional. "And that's outdoors, no studio audience."


Apparently, the executive was ready to fire Sinbad, who was on the verge of getting a job offer. So, what happened?

"[Bill] Cosby said no," Sinbad explains. "So, he said, 'This man should be on TV.' I said, 'Well, you know, you could make that happen if you…'"

And the rest, as they say, was history! He concludes, "It's rare you find actors who do comedy. I said, 'They're funny.' I swear to God, I said, 'Guys, sitting down watching Jasmine and Cree, it hurts."

Watch the new sneak peek above!