While appearing on the Good Guys podcast, hosted by Josh Peck and Ben Soffer, actor John Stamos confirmed that not only were Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen fired from Full House (1987-95) when they first started filming – he was the individual responsible. They weren’t gone for long, however, as they eventually returned to the role, playing Michelle Tanner for the sitcom’s entire run.
John Stamos had the Olsen twins fired while filming the pilot
When host Josh Peck asked John Stamos to discuss the rumor that he once tried to get the Olsen twins removed from Full House, the actor replied, “I didn’t try, I did it.” He had them fired because he couldn’t deal with their behavior while they shot a scene for the pilot.
In the scene, Stamos’ character, Uncle Jesse, and Dave Coulier‘s Joey Gladstone agree to look after Michelle, played by the Olsen twins, while their father, Danny Turner (Bob Saget), was away. Unprepared for the realities of caring for a young child, the two get into some humorous antics, especially as they attempt to change Michelle’s diaper.
“We’re carrying her downstairs. I think I was holding her under the armpits and Dave was holding her little feet,” Stamos shared. “We take her in the kitchen and we hose her down, and fan her fanny. We wrapped her up in paper towels.”
Both of the twins screamed throughout the scene. “They wanted to be anywhere else but there, and so did I,” he said. “They were 11 months old, God bless them. I couldn’t deal with it. I said, ‘This is not gonna work, guys.’ I screamed at them, ‘Get rid of them. I can’t work like this.'”
The Olsen twins’ replacements weren’t any better
After that day, the Olsens were replaced with a different set of twins. “They bring on these two red-headed kids – and I’m sure their parents loved them and thought they were attractive… but they weren’t attractive,” John Stamos shared. It didn’t take long for him to regret his demand, as the new actors were more “terrible” than the Olsens; after just a few days, the actor said “Bring the Olsens back!”
The paid did return – and thank goodness, because together they played the perfect Michelle Tanner.
During the podcast, Josh Peck also asked Stamos if the twins were aware at the time that they’d been fired. Considering they were only 11 months old, it’s pretty likely they were unaware. However, Stamos said he didn’t know if their parents were informed, but that the girls certainly know now that they were fired.
The Olsen twins weren’t part of the Fuller House
After Full House, the Olsen twins went on to star in a number of other films, including It Takes Two (1995) and New York Minute (2004). They continued to act until 2012, when they made the decision to retire from Hollywood. They turned their attention to the world of fashion, creating their own brand called “The Row” in 2006, which has since grown into a high-end fashion line.
When the Netflix reboot Fuller House (2016-20) began filming, both Olsen twins turned down the opportunity to return to the franchise. The show ran for five seasons, all without Michelle Tanner. In the opening episode of the sitcom, Stephanie Tanner, played by Jodie Sweetin, asked what was going on with her “little sis.” Her father, Danny, told her, “Well, she sends her love, but she’s busy in New York running her fashion empire.”
Then, the characters give a deliberate look toward the camera, breaking the fourth wall. This knowing stare was because that was exactly what the Olsen twins were doing at the time.
John Stamos was angry the Olsen twins weren’t involved
Appearing on the And That’s What You REALLY Missed podcast with hosts Jenna Ushkowitz and Kevin McHale, John Stamos revealed his feelings about the Olsen twins’ skipping out on Fuller House. He revealed he was initially “angry” about them passing up on the opportunity, saying, “When I did Fuller House, they didn’t wanna come back. And I was angry for a minute, and that got out.”
He revealed that it was Bob Saget who kept the cast together, and that the actor’s death brought about a discussion about the show between him and the Olsens.
“The twins moved to New York. And I gotta tell you, one of the only good things to come out of Bob’s [death] Well… Mary-Kate and Ashley, we didn’t see them much. I mean, we stayed in touch, a little bit, but Bob really did. And they were so great.
“You hear rumors, ‘Oh, they hated their childhood, or they hated being on the show or whatever,'” he continued. “But they were like, ‘We loved our childhood. We loved being with you. We miss Bob.’ They came over to my house. They brought a pork chop and sage. I don’t know why, but thank you? It was a frozen pork chop, so that was really nice. So we stayed very close.”