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Gilmore Girls launched Adam Shapiro’s acting career. While in college, Shapiro did a walk-on role on The Andy Dick Show, but Gilmore Girls started his process of auditioning and landing roles. He’d have much more dialogue in subsequent roles, but Shapiro remembers his one line on Gilmore Girls being especially challenging.

'Gilmore Girls' guest star Adam Shapiro stands on the red carpet
Adam Shapiro | Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images for FLC

Shapiro was a guest on Scott Patterson’s I Am All In podcast on Nov. 16 to reminisce about his first scene on Gilmore Girls. He’s part of Marty (Wayne Wilcox)’s breakfast crew sitting at a table in the dining hall at Yale.

Adam Shapiro’s one line on ‘Gilmore Girls’

At Yale, Rory (Alexis Bledel) wears her bunny slippers to breakfast, which any college student past or present can acknowledge as a valid choice. Sugarman (Shapiro) comments on them. 

“It’s so funny, now it’s 20 years ago, 19 years ago,” Shapiro said on I Am All In. “It is so much harder to be in a scene with one line than it is to be in a scene with like 50 lines. My line in that episode is ‘nice bunny shoes.’ That’s it. I just say ‘nice bunny shoes.’ And all I remember was trying to just not mess up the whole scene with my one line.”

The reason 1 line is harder to pull off well

Since Gilmore Girls, Shapiro has guested on Scandal, Full Circle, The Mindy Project, Bones and more. In those and movies like A Single Man, Steve Jobs, and Mank he surely had more lines than “nice bunny shoes.”

“The hard part about the one line thing is you have to act like you’re not just sitting there waiting for your line when that’s all you are doing,” Shapiro said. “All you are doing is just waiting for that moment to say that line. The other thing was I come from theater. I had never done a TV show so I was completely unaware of where the cameras were, what that meant, what my eyeline was.”

Alexis Bledel and Neema Barnette helped Adam Shapiro on his ‘Gilmore Girls’ line

Neema Barnette directed that episode of Gilmore Girls. She and Bledel helped Shapiro find his bearings for his line. 

“So I remember not being able to see her bunny shoes,” Shapiro said. “But having to say nice bunny shoes. I kept standing up so that I could see her bunny shoes with my eyes and I remember the director being like just you’re stepping out of frame. Just sit down and say nice bunny shoes and move on. I was trying to make a total meal out of it. So I remember that really well. I remember Alexis being really wonderful and I remember her saying, she was like right here, she covered my face and said, ‘You look exactly like Milo in your eyes.’ I don’t see it. I’m a squinter.”