The Mayor of Pawnee Was Finally Revealed On Parks & Rec Last Night, & It Was Well Worth The Wait
Bill – Getting Murray to play the mayor of Pawnee has been a dream of Amy Poehler and the “Parks and Rec” cast and crew for years. Back in 2011, Poehler mentioned her wish to cast him in an interview at PayleyFest and during an appearance on “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.” She brought it up it again in an interview with Entertainment Weekly at Sundance in 2013.
“I want Bill Murray to play the mayor,” she said “And I just dream about it every night. I whisper it to a bird and then I open the window and the bird flies away.”
Show creator Mike Schur told Entertainment Weekly that when they did finally manage to snag the actor, he was the perfect addition on set.
“He was just the most delightful person,” he said. “Not only was he incredibly complimentary of the show, he went around to every one of the actors and told them how great they were and cited specific episodes and moments. He hung out on the set for three hours, watching us shoot the show.”
The man, the myth, the legend.
— Parks and Recreation (@parksandrecnbc) February 18, 2015
The second part of last night’s back to back episodes of Parks and Rec, which served as the second to last episode EVER of the series (next week’s finale is an hour long) featured two funerals, which was appropriate considering the name of the episode was ‘Two Funerals’. While watching Ron pay tribute to his barber with a 10er was touching, nothing topped (or will ever top) the reveal of Mayor Gunderson. For pretty much the entire series, we as the audience have been told tales about the Mayor of Pawnee, but have never seen his face. I had actually completely forgotten about the mayor during the lead up to this last season, but thankfully the writers of Parks and Rec didn’t, because the first of two funerals last night was for Mayor Gunderson, who was played quietly and happily by none other than Bill Murray. Bill Murray being the mayor of Pawnee makes so much sense: with a mayor like Bill, how could Pawnee be anything other than the greatest small town in the world? There’s no video of his appearance yet, but the official Parks and Rec twitter account tweeted out that picture which makes the entire world happy. The Huffington Post article referenced above also has quotes from Amy Poehler and Parks & Rec creator Mike Schur about how much of a joy Murray was on set. Bill Murray loves life almost as much as we love him.