Louie Anderson Tells 'Hippo' Critic to Take a Dive


Film critic Rex Reed has taken a lot of heat for calling Identity Thief star Melissa McCarthy a "hippo," and now comedian Louie Anderson is sharing his opinion with ET's Brooke Anderson.

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"I just see that beautiful face -- I never think, 'Oh, she's a fat person.' I think she's a person who happens to be fat," says Anderson of McCarthy. "She's super talented, super funny. The world's made up of everybody."

Vegas favorite Anderson is back on TV and ready to take a plunge in the new ABC reality show Splash, premiering March 19 at 8/7c, in which celebrities will look fear in the face as they leap off a 10-meter high dive, pair off to complete synchronized stunts, and flip, twist and spin into the depths of the pool below – and each week the competition will get stiffer as the dives and challenges increase in difficulty. Anderson is leaping alongside Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Drake Bell, Chuy Bravo, Nicole Eggert, Rory Bushfield, Keshia Knight Pulliam, Ndamukong Suh, Katherine Webb and Kendra Wilkinson.

"I'm 400 pounds into the water; come on everybody, that's good TV," says Anderson. "And then a shark bit me. It's TV. They have to throw a shark in there."

Video: Jillian Michaels Defends Melissa McCarthy's Weight

Jokes aside, Anderson is also trying to change his life with the show, given the fact that he has had back problems and heart surgery.

"This is the kind of thing where it's not just diving -- they have me on a weight-loss thing," he says optimistically. "They really care about me on this show."

Watch ET for more with Splash!