Why The Bear’s Ebon Moss-Bachrach Came Very Close to Not Playing Richie

Ebon Moss-Bachrach gives an electric, career-altering performance on FX's The Bear—but it almost never happened. Find out why the actor had to be convinced to read for the part.

By Daniel Trainor Aug 05, 2022 12:15 AMTags
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Ebon Moss-Bachrach almost said "No, chef."

Moss-Bachrach—who plays the antagonistic, yet oddly charming Richie on FX's breakout The Bear—revealed that he came very close to missing out on the project altogether.

"They sent me [scripts] the first two episodes, and to be honest, I was starting to make the Star Wars show [Andor] and I didn't even read it," the actor told Entertainment Weekly Aug. 3. "I was so overwhelmed...It was COVID, I was getting my family over to the U.K. [to shoot Andor]. It just sort of slipped through the cracks."

The Bear without Moss-Bachrach's Richie is like an Italian beef without giardiniera—it just doesn't make any sense!

"My agent, to his credit, called me two weeks later," Moss-Bachrach said. "He's like, 'Listen, I really think you're making a mistake by not reading this.' I mean, this character of Richie was written so well. It just was so beautifully formed, and there was so much life on the page."

We owe a debt of gratitude to this agent.

Fictional Chefs from Film and TV

Moss-Bachrach then did a Skype audition with Jeremy Allen White, who plays Carmy, Richie's "cousin" and newfound boss on The Bear.

"We were staying in this cool loft in London, and my daughter was in the other corner doing fifth-grade Zoom school," Moss-Bachrach said. "I was on the other side of the loft in like a little undershirt, going F--k this! F--k that! Are you f--king out of your f--kin' mind?' You know, just screaming."

Listen, it paid off. 

Matt Dinerstein/FX

Moss-Bachrach revealed that season two of The Bear will "probably start shooting sometime early next year."

While we await more of Richie's shenanigans, you can catch Moss-Bachrach in Andor, premiering Sept. 21 on Disney+.

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