Wednesday, September 14, 2016
The $5000 name change
The trick is clear the names before you go into production. In 1985 when David Isaacs and I created a comeback series for Mary Tyler Moore, we had her play a columnist at a tabloid Chicago newspaper. James Farentino played the editor. We named him Frank Luciano (or something kind of Italian). We didn’t hear back from the research firm so we figured we were fine.
For the door to his office we had a frosted window with his name embossed.
Then we heard from research that the name didn’t clear. We came up with another one. Once it was in the script the art department redid the door.
And that name didn’t clear. We proposed a new name, a new door was built, and guess what? (I know. You’re way ahead of me.)
I don’t recall what our contingency plan was if that name wasn’t cleared and cameras were about to roll. Of course, now that I think of it, all of this could have easily been avoided if we just (a) not used a frosted glass window door, (b) left the door open, or (c) changed his name to Tony Soprano.
Oh well. It was Mary’s money; not mine.