Time for Friday Questions. The theme this week seems to be stars.
Frasier's first wife, the children's entertainer "Nanny G," was played by Emma Thompson on an episode of Cheers, then by Laurie Metcalf on an episode of Frasier years later. Would you happen to know if any attempt was made to get Thompson to reprise the role?
Yes. Ms. Thompson was unavailable. I will say it was a great thrill to work with her on CHEERS. She’s as incredibly nice as she is Oscar awarded.
Laurie Metcalf was one of the very few people who could replace her. She was great in FRASIER, but it wasn't the same. I couldn't ask her what Kenneth Branagh was really like.
VP81955 wants to know:
Ken, in the old days of the studio system, places such as Paramount and MGM had rather palatial dressing rooms for their stars under contract. Those days are long since gone, of course, as all film stars are independent contractors -- but I'm wondering if such rooms now house stars on TV series, particularly those that have proven to be hits.
First of all, let me make it clear I wasn’t born during those glory days of the studios.
Generally speaking, those lavish dressing rooms have been converted to offices. When David Isaacs and I were at Paramount we had our own bungalow, which used to be Judd Hirsch’s dressing room during TAXI. You can usually tell if it’s a former dressing room because there’s a shower in the bathroom. And there’s a bathroom.
I don’t know what accommodations are made for big movie stars today – I don’t know what Julia Roberts or R2D2 get – but I’m sure they’re nicer than all of our homes.
Some TV stars just prefer giant trailers. You can really trick out those babies these days.
I tried to stay out of stars’ dressing rooms. When I was invited it was usually because they had problems with the script.
From Adam Hauck:
I had a dream the other night that I was at a bowling alley and all of a sudden David Schramm enters. He seems like a nice guy (I'm a big Wings fan).
This got me wondering if you have any good (or even mediocre) stories about him. Also if he really is a nice guy like in my dream, lol.
What were you eating before going to sleep?
I've been watching Cheers again on Netflix. I've found that the Woody centered episodes are my least favorite. Nothing against Woody Harrelson, but the character just seems so two dimensional that's it's hard to have him carry an episode. Even the Woody centered episode of Frasier is not a favorite of mine. What are your thoughts?
I have to respectfully disagree. Some of my favorite CHEERS episodes are the ones with him and Kelly. Their wedding episode is a series highlight.
I didn’t love the FRASIER that Woody guested on. It was a hard week with a lot of rewriting. I’ll leave it at that.
And finally, from leemats:
I recently learned that some cable shows have "partial contracts" for their actors. (I'm not sure what the actual term is.) For example, Jon Hamm is contracted for all 13 episodes of a Mad Men season, but some members of the cast may only appear in 10 or so.
Has this been going on for a while?
Anything you’d like to know? Just ask me in the comments section I'll be in my dressing room.