A spokeswoman for the prime minister told AFP that he had been invited to appear as himself on the show, but “respectfully declined their offer.” Instead, Canadian journalist Lucas Meyer, who does a pretty accurate Trudeau voice impersonation, was given the gig after sending the producers a video clip.
Meyer told public broadcaster CBC it was a “quite surreal” opportunity. He said he appears as Trudeau in only two scenes, and one might have been cut. “It’s a handful of lines.”
According to Canadian media, a subplot of the episode involves daughter Lisa Simpson being granted asylum in Canada during a family trip to Niagara Falls. Canadian-born Simpsons consulting producer Tim Long said the show would also touch on a political scandal plaguing Trudeau ahead of October elections, involving accusations of meddling in the prosecution of a corporate engineering giant.
View this post on Instagram
Over 900,000 more jobs since 2015 ✅ Our plan to invest in Canadians is working: more people have good jobs, unemployment is at a historic low, and conditions to #InvestInCanada have never been better. 🇨🇦 Plus de 900 000 nouveaux emplois depuis 2015 ✅ Notre plan d'investissement dans les Canadiens fonctionne : plus de gens ont de bons emplois, le taux de chômage est à un creux historique et les conditions pour #InvestirAuCanada n'ont jamais été meilleures.
“That may be one of those things that nobody in America is going to get,” Long told The Canadian Press. “It’s funny, though, because of course America got used to the idea that, ‘Well, Trudeau is great’ – at least the liberal part of America has sort of got it in their head that, ‘Oh, he’s amazing and Canadians must love him’ – and I think they’re shocked to learn that he’s in a little bit of trouble right now,” he said.
A previous Simpsons visit to Canada in 2002 had created a huge splash, with political leaders issuing statements welcoming the fictional family and local broadcaster Global TV hosting a red-carpet pre-screening event. That 30-minute episode saw the family tour Toronto’s CN Tower and Homer seeking to get injured to take advantage of Canada’s public health system.
In 2014, Trudeau’s predecessor Stephen Harper stopped following Homer on Twitter after local media reported that the animated family patriarch was on his Twitter list.
What a once-in-a-lifetime honor it was for Mick Jagger and Keith Richards to meet me. pic.twitter.com/NH2hzsBfzY
— Homer J. Simpson (@HomerJSimpson) August 27, 2014