Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's role in 'Airplane' was originally written for Pete Rose
Kareem's part in Airplane! was written for Pete Rose
The pinnacle of Pete Rose's career in the entertainment industry was almost a hilarious role in the classic 1980 comedy "Airplane!" It's true.
An oral history of "Airplane!" recently published by the A.V. Club is informative if not exhaustive. It includes incredibly interesting morsels of information, like that David Letterman read for the part of Ted Striker, and that Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's role as Roger Murdock was originally written for Rose.
Oh, what could have been.
Though, we guess Rose had better things to do that summer, as he hit .331 for the 1979 Phillies that summer. The following year -- when "Airplane!" was released to theaters -- Rose and the Phils won the 1980 World Series.