Trivia

EntertainmentTelevisionBars and ClubsSportsFootballCelebritiesJobs and Workplace

Fred Dryer and Julia Duffy auditioned for the parts of Sam and Diane. Both were later guest-stars.

------------------------

The series was originally to have been set in Barstow, California, and Sam Malone was to originally to have been a retired football player. When Ted Danson was hired for the role, his character was rewritten to be a retired baseball player for the Boston Red Sox to match Danson's body type.

------------------------

John Ratzenberger (Cliff Clavin) was originally hired for seven episodes during the 1982-1983 season. Kelsey Grammer (Frasier Crane) was hired for the same number of episodes during the 1984-1985 season.

------------------------

Norm Peterson's oft-mentioned wife, Vera, was never shown. In a Thanksgiving Day episode she finally appeared, only to have her face covered with a pie meant for Sam (and thrown by Diane) before the audience can see her face.

------------------------

An alternate ending was shot before the studio audience of Shelley Long's final episode to hide the fact that Long was leaving the series. That ending, in which Sam and Diane actually go through with the wedding ceremony and get married, was discarded in favor of the real ending, which was filmed without a studio audience, in which Sam and Diane stop the ceremony before they are married.

------------------------

The stage at Paramount Studios where Cheers was shot became the home of its hit spin-off "Frasier" (1993).

------------------------

NBC came close to cancelling the show in its first season, but it was championed by then-NBC entertainment president Brandon Tartikoff.

------------------------

It was the decision of Ted Danson to leave the show at the end of the 1992-1993 season that led to its cancellation at the end of that season.

------------------------

The exterior shots of the bar were filmed at "The Bull and Finch Pub" in Boston. The bar was named after famous American architect Charles Bulfinch (1763-1844).

------------------------

When star Kirstie Alley became pregnant in the 10th season, the show's writers planned for her character, Rebecca, to have conceived a child with Sam. Sadly, Kirstie Alley had a miscarriage and the plot was abandoned.

------------------------

The series finished 77th - dead last - in the Nielsen ratings the week it debuted.

------------------------

The silhouetted photo of Sam "Mayday" Malone - his nickname during his baseball career - in his baseball days that hangs in the bar is actually a photo of Jim Lonborg, a Boston Red Sox pitcher in the 1960s and early '70s. Lonborg wore #16 for the Red Sox; in one episode, Sam's jersey is shown with #16 on it.

------------------------

All 10 of the actors who appeared as regulars during the show's run, Ted Danson, George Wendt, John Ratzenberger, Kirstie Alley, Shelley Long, Rhea Perlman, Kelsey Grammer, Woody Harrelson, Nicholas Colasanto and Bebe Neuwirth, received Emmy nominations for their roles. Ted Danson, Kirstie Alley, Shelley Long, Rhea Perlman, Woody Harrelson and Bebe Neuwirth have won.

------------------------

Early episodes did not have the familiar "Cheers was Filmed Before a Live Studio Audience" announcement spoken by a different cast member at the beginning of each episode. The spoken disclaimer was added in 1983 due to some viewers' complaining that the laugh track was too loud. No laugh track was used on the show. Despite the disclaimer, viewers still complained about the "laugh track".

------------------------

A digitally remastered set of episodes was donated to the Museum of Television and Radio by creator James Burrows on behalf of Paramount Pictures in the summer of 2001. Paramount began circulating the digitally remastered episodes in syndication in the fall of 2001, and on Nick at Nite on October 7, 2001.

------------------------

Norm's real first name was Hillary. Norman was has middle name.

------------------------

Cliff wasn't in the original script. John Ratzenberger auditioned for the part of Norm and wasn't thought suitable. He then asked the writers if they had a "bar know-it-all" and quickly improvised a character. This impressed the producers to the point that they created the part of Cliff Clavin for him.

------------------------

Sadly, the set used for the bar is no longer available for viewing by the public. In 2006, The Hollywood Entertainment Museum was closed, and the set is now being held in storage. But there are plans in the next couple years to re-open a larger museum where the set will be featured again.

------------------------

When Shelley Long (Diane) and Rhea Perlman (Carla) both became pregnant in real life during the 1984-1985 season, only Pearlman's pregnancy was written into the script. For most of that season, Long was mostly filmed behind the bar or from the neck up.

------------------------

'Karen Valentine' was one of the original choices for the role of Diane.

------------------------

One special episode was filmed but never aired on TV called "Uncle Sam Malone", in which the gang tries to convince Diane that U.S. Savings Bonds are a good investment. This is a special episode produced for the U.S. Treasury to be used during savings bonds drives. It was written by Ralph Phillips and directed by James Burrows.

------------------------

Paramount was so convinced in the potential of the series, the producers were promised that if the show was canceled by NBC, new episodes would be shot for first run syndication in a early version of Paramount's network UPN. This proved unnecessary.

------------------------

Including the spin-off "Frasier" (1993), Kelsey Grammer played the character of Frasier Crane for 20 consecutive years, a record for an American actor in a comedy series.

------------------------

The writers often gave Kelsey Grammer deliberately bad lines as a game to see if he could make them funny - and Grammer always did.

------------------------

According to the sign outside the bar, Cheers was established in 1895. But in the episode where Rebecca wants to have a 100th anniversary party for Cheers, Sam says that when he bought the bar, he made up the date.

------------------------

Rebecca's nickname in college was "Backseat Beckie".

------------------------

The show was originally going to be set in a hotel. When they realized the bulk of the show was going to be set in the hotel bar, they dropped the hotel and stayed with the bar.

------------------------

David Angell (who was a writer, story editor, and producer for Cheers) and his wife were both killed on September 11, 2001, when the plane that they were on, American Airlines flight 11 from Boston to Los Angeles, was hijacked and flown into the World Trade Center in New York City. They were returning home to California after attending a family wedding in Cape Cod, Massachusetts.

------------------------

More performers (17) received Emmy nominations as lead, supporting or guest actors/actresses on this show than did for any other series, until "ER" (1994), which received Emmy nominations for 27 different actors and actresses (as of 2005)

------------------------

The full-length single version of this song was recorded by Gary Portnoy and included a second verse.

------------------------

After Nicholas Colasanto who played Coach passed away, a picture of the Native American leader Geronimo was put on the wall of the elevated alcove behind the bar. The picture had hung in Colasanto's dressing room and he considered it a good luck charm.

------------------------

The part of Carla was at one point offered to singer-songwriter Janis Ian. Ian declined, as she would effectively have to take seven years out of her musical career to fill the acting contract. Ironically, the following year Ian was dropped by her label after the commercial failure of the album she had declined Cheers to write; it would be seven years before she recorded or toured significantly again.

------------------------

Originally, the character of Rebecca Howe was written as a frigid, no nonsense ice queen, and this was how she was portrayed in her early episodes, and fans did not warm to her character. Meanwhile, Kirstie Alley had actually become quite popular with the cast. It was not until the episode where Rebecca gets drunk and confesses her feeling about her boss to Sam Malone that audiences finally responded to the character. The writers, seeing this, rewrote the character as neurotic and zany, and she remained that way for the rest of the show.

------------------------

David Alan Grier auditioned for a proposed African-American character that never came to fruition.

------------------------

Ted Danson, Rhea Perlman and 'George Wendt' are the only actors to appear in every episode.

------------------------

Jay Thomas was a DJ at an LA radio station when he auditioned for the role of hockey star Eddie LeBec. He won the role, and was brought back in several episodes in order to give Carla a story arc; Eddie and Carla eventually were married on the show. However, since he was not a 'regular' on the series he kept working at the radio station. One day he took a call on the air asking him what it was like to work on 'Cheers', and Thomas made several unflattering remarks about Rhea Perlman and having to kiss her. Perlman happened to be listening to the show, and a few episodes later the 'Zamboni incident' killed off the Eddie LeBec character. Thomas confronted the cast in the "200th Anniversary Special" episode about the way his character was killed off. This scene is cut from the reruns.

------------------------

In episodes where scenes are set in the pool room at the rear of the bar, a poster for the "Boston Barleyhoppers" can sometimes be seen. The Barleyhoppers were a running club that met at the actual "Bull & Finch" pub in Boston.

------------------------

The fact that Woody Harrelson shared the same first name as his character was a total coincidence. The character was named Woody before any actor had auditioned for it. According to Harrelson, he had never seen the show and was not interested in doing television but auditioned at the suggestion of a friend.

------------------------

The address of "Cheers" is 112 1/2 Beacon Street.

------------------------

The series was shot on film unlike most sitcoms during this time which were shot on tape. Because the series was low-rated at first, NBC was losing money on it. Paramount considered switching to tape due to its lower cost. A test scene was shot on tape but the producers hated how it looked.

------------------------

Carla's full name was Carla Maria Victoria Angelina Teresa Apollonia Lozupone Tortelli LeBec.

------------------------

To help boost ratings during the first season, a special scene was produced and aired right before Super Bowl XVII (1983). The scene featured commentator Pete Axthelm.

 

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
Comments
Loading