Danny DeVito Jokes He Was Trying to "Act Like Dumbo" in Press Event Fall

The actor also spoke about Danny DeVito Day, which is celebrated in his hometown of Asbury Park, New Jersey, on his birthday.
ABC/Randy Holmes

Danny DeVito addressed his fall at a Dumbo press event in Mexico when he visited Jimmy Kimmel Live! on Monday.

The actor explained that the tumble took place in front of 110 members of the press before Kimmel shared a clip of the fall.

"It was the first press tour for Dumbo. It's really exciting and, literally, there were a hundred people out there, and all in the back the media, they have all their cameras on," he said. "And the people are going crazy, and I just try to act like Dumbo, except my ears are not big enough."

Kimmel asked if the fall bothered him. "Nah, it was OK," answered DeVito.

While the constant media attention can be a drawback to working as a professional actor, DeVito shared that a positive part of the job is that his hometown of Asbury Park, New Jersey, recently designated his birthday as Danny DeVito Day.

The actor explained that originally he was going to have a beach named after him, but roughly a month before the dedication, the townspeople explained that they couldn't do that.

"In all due respect, I love them over there, but I said, 'What are we gonna do?' They said, 'We'll name a day after you.' Even better! November 17, that's my day."

Kimmel then asked how people should celebrate Danny DeVito Day. "Do whatever you want to do that makes you feel really good," the actor said. "Whatever it is, as long as it doesn't hurt anyone."

DeVito also spoke about his frequent collaborator Tim Burton, who directed Dumbo, during the appearance. The actor shared that while he has acted in four of Burton's films, the director made a cameo in DeVito's 1992 film Hoffa, which he directed and starred in. 

"He came to visit one day and he was hanging out at the monitor. He came to support me 'cause I'm directing the movie," DeVito recalled. "I said, 'Do you want to be in the film?' And he said, 'Well, what am I gonna do?'"

DeVito explained that they had just filmed a scene that required several coffins. "I said, 'You want to be a corpse?' And he said, 'Yeah.' We put him in a suit and stuck him in a coffin," he revealed.

Kimmel shared an outtake from the scene, in which the camera panned over multiple coffins. When the camera reached Burton, it zoomed in on him while DeVito and co-star Jack Nicholson woke him up.

Later in the appearance, DeVito reflected on his long-lasting career. 

Thanks to his role as Frank on It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia, a younger generation has been introduced to DeVito.

Some fans have taken their interested in DeVito to another level. For example, one student went viral after she shared online that she made a cardboard cutout of DeVito her prom date. Kimmel continued to share photos of women bringing cardboard cutouts of DeVito to their daily activities.

"That's good. Yeah, I like that stuff," he said. "It's really amazing. Sunny — it's been 13 years now — it's just so great. I'm having so much fun doing it."