Commandant Eric Lassard is a fictional character in the 1984 film Police Academy, as well as its six sequels. He is portrayed by actor George Gaynes.
Commandant Lassard is introduced as head of the Metropolitan Police Academy (sometimes also called the Midcity Police Academy). He is initially not into the politics of the police department. When Police Chief Henry J. Hurst and Lieutenant Thaddeus Harris are denouncing the new female mayor's policy change to remove race and gender as barriers from academy admissions, he plays along with them and quickly dismisses their comments once they've left the room. In Police Academy 4 : Citizens On Patrol, however, he initiated a program known as Citizens on Patrol (COP), which is a community outreach course.
Lassard is also rather eccentric. He is rarely seen without his goldfish, frequently travels by golfcart, and tends to destroy things while golfing in his office. He also often loses touch with reality, either by beginning to pace and proceeding to walk several yards away from the group he is addressing, or by repeating the word "very" an abundance of times ("Have a very, very, very good day." "This is very, very... very bad.") The commandant is a skilful billiards player, once clearing an entire pool table in a single turn, much to the surprise of local bar players.
Lassard nearly loses his job three times in the series: In Police Academy 3 : Back In Training, the Metropolitan Police Academy, now a semi-statewide institution, is pitted against the state's other police academy in a competition to decide which school will be closed due to budget cuts. In Police Academy 5 : Assingnment Miami Beach, Lassard reaches the mandatory retirement age for police officers. This is brought to his superiors' attention by Captain Harris, and Lassard's retirement is announced to the surprise of everyone (including himself) at the subsequent graduation ceremony. He flies with his contingent to Miami Beach, Florida to be honored as Police Officer of the Decade at the National Police Chief's Convention. While in Miami, he inadvertently foils a jewel thief's escape, earning him and his men and women medals from the city of Miami. As a result, the mandatory retirement age is waived for him, and he is allowed to serve until he decides to retire himself. His age is not given but he is approximately 70 years old. In Police Academy 6 : City Under Siege, the criminal mastermind who has begun to seize control of the city frames Lassard for another jewel heist, planting missing pieces in his desk drawer at the Oakdale Station, where he is heading up a task force. Lassard is taken off active duty pending an investigation, which ultimately clears him, when Nick and Hightower proved that Harris (which he wasn't aware about at the time) was the leak to the Mayor's master plan.
Comdt. Lassard's immediate family features his wife, who is only seen briefly during the first movie and is never named, and a brother, Captain Pete Lassard (played by Howard Hesseman), who is approximately 15 to 20 years younger, and head of a precinct that has one of the worst crime rates in the city until the fresh graduates eventually snag a gang that's been terrorizing the streets. A nephew (possibly Pete's son), Nick Lassard, is with the Miami Police, but leaves to join Eric in Police Academy 6.
Lassard has other nephews in the animated series. He is most likely a deputy chief who is in charge of training and likes commandant as he is the head of the academy.
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