Las Vegas legend Roy Horn made his first public appearance since his October 2003 mauling by a tiger, appearing via satellite Monday to an audience of advertisers and TV journalists at NBC’s annual presentation of its new fall lineup in New York.
Horn, 59, sported eyeglasses and a short haircut and didn’t move his left arm during the interview, in which he discussed the new computer-animated series Father of the Pride – about the lions that performed in Siegfried and Roy’s stage show, as well as other animals living within the pair’s Las Vegas residential compound.
As the Los Angeles Times points out, Father of the Pride is the first animated series in an NBC debut fall lineup since 1964’s The Famous Adventures of Mr. Magoo.
According to the Associated Press, at the preview Horn spoke often and made several jokes about the series – which will take over the 9 p.m. Tuesday time slot formerly occupied by Frasier – as he and Fischbacher sat in chairs.
Both briefly acknowledged the miracle of his recovery during the interview, portions of which were aired on Tuesday’s Today show.
As seen on the NBC morning show, Horn never unclenched his left fist, and appeared only able to move one eye. Portions of the left side of his face appeared paralyzed, but he did say that he and Siegfried had played Radio City Music Hall “and it needed a painting … Look, they’re laughing already.”
The Washington Post reports that the crowd inside New York’s Radio City Music Hall, where the Siegfried and Roy interview was beamed, was rendered speechless at what the paper considered the network’s shameless promotion. NBC honcho Jeff Zucker also said that Horn would be appearing this fall on NBC to discuss his accident and recovery in detail.
But Conan O’Brien, apparently, was not speechless, The Post also reports.
During a comic break in the Monday unveiling of the fall slate, the NBC Late Night host took to the great stage and, referring to Roy Horn while lampooning his bosses, told the crowd: “He’s been horribly mauled – let’s make a show about it! … He might die! … We know! … If that show works, they’re going to make another show – about Billy Joel’s car!”