Spaceballs Star Rick Moranis to Play Dark Helmet on The Goldbergs

In a rare treat, Rick Moranis will reprise his Spaceballs role, via voice, as Dark Helmet, on an upcoming episode of The Goldbergs.

Spaceballs still easily maintains a place amongst the upper echelon of Star Wars parody movies – notwithstanding the fact that, technically, it’s the only one, at least outside of the porn industry. However, as rumors of a belated sequel to the 1987 Mel Brooks classic continue to swirl (as they have for over 30 years,) it appears that one of its stars, Rick Moranis, will – in a certain manner – reprise his role in an upcoming episode of ABC sitcom The Goldbergs.

It appears that the touted 1980s setting of ABC’s The Goldbergs will serve as the perfect platform on which Rick Moranis will carry out a comeback of sorts, since, according to USA Today, he will, via voice, reprise his role as Dark Helmet in an upcoming Spaceballs-themed episode of the sitcom.

As creator Adam F. Goldberg states:

“I truly think Rick Moranis gave the most underrated and brilliant comedic performance in any ‘80s movie as Dark Helmet. I’ve been a lifelong fan of his work and became obsessed with having him reprise the role on my show. As an added bonus, maybe this even gets Spaceballs back in the conversation, and I can get my dream of helping make a sequel!”

The episode in question will be titled, appropriately, “Spaceballs.” The story will have young Adam (Sean Giambrone), fresh from having just seen Spaceballs, start a Mel Brooks fan club, facilitating a full-on cosplay exhibition in which he dresses up as a Moranis’s hilarious Darth Vader-spoofing villain, Dark Helmet. However, Adam’s endeavor makes Jackie (Rowan Blanchard) mistake his intent for some kind of political satire, which she runs in the school paper.

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Moranis’s Dark Helmet role reprisal will occur during a dream sequence in which Adam battles the “real” Dark Helmet (voiced authentically by Moranis,) in a battle of “the Schwartz” (the movie’s version of the Force). The experience incites Adam to make a promise to get a Spaceballs sequel produced; a gesture that, as history will prove, is far more difficult to achieve than the young fan could possibly ever imagine.  

The prospect of Moranis playing Dark Helmet again, even if it’s just for a voice role, is exciting stuff. Moranis, who’s known from his sketch comedy run on SCTV and legendary comedy films like Strange Brew, Ghostbusters (and its sequel), Little Shop of Horrors, Parenthood and the Honey, I Shrunk the Kids films, has been somewhat reclusive since his retirement from acting in the late-1990s. Thus, his return here for The Goldbergs is quite the nostalgic coup.

The Goldbergs episode, “Spaceballs,” is set to air Wednesday, May 9 (that’s this week!) at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.