“Sometimes it’s necessary for me to make calls,” said Tony Shalhoub to the New York Post about asking John Turturro to be a guest star on Monk.
Prior to his appearance on the series, Turturro was widely known for his many film appearances. In the '90s he starred in hit films such as O Brother, Where Art Thou? and Miller's Crossing, with very few television credits.
Luckily for Tony Shalhoub and Monk fans, the two actors had a long history with one another. Having appeared together in the movie Barton Fink and the theatrical performance of Waiting for Godot, the two have been longtime friends.
“You always want to start with, ‘no pressure here, but if you’re a fan of the show or if you have a little free time, I can promise it’s a great group of people to work with.'"
Turturro would agree and put on the hilarious performance of Adrian Monk’s brother, Ambrose Monk. While Monk is widely known for his large list of phobias, Ambrose takes it up a notch when he’s revealed to be agoraphobic and hasn’t left his childhood home since the ‘70s.
“We wanted to use this as a vehicle to get us into more backstory for Monk, to explore where Monk comes from, his family situation, and we thought that this brother character would be a good place to start," said Shalhoub about the deeper look into Monk's family.
Ambrose made his first appearance in the episode, Mr. Monk and the Three Pies, where he struggled to either shake hands and hug Monk. Turturro's performance as Monk's nervous brother would become a comical fan favorite and return two more times in the series.
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