Get to know the fun facts about Cheers (1982-1993) one of the most beloved sitcoms in American television history.
Like many other successful TV series, Cheers was off to a not-so-good start. It premiered on September 30, 1982 and suffered rock-bottom ratings. Thankfully, NBC exec Brandon Tartikoff saved it from being axed off the air.
The exterior shots of the bar setting of Cheers come from a real-life venue, the Bull & Finch Pub which is located across the Boston Public Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. Now it is called as Cheers Beacon Hill or simply Cheers.
Cheers’ leading character Sam Malone was originally written as a retired football player. But because of actor Ted Danson’s physique that was more ideal to a baseball player’s, Sam was re-written as a pro baseball player instead.
To really get into the role as the bartender of the Cheers pub, Danson enrolled in a two-week bartending class in Burbank, California.
Of course! Kelsey Grammer, who played as the psychiatrist and regular bar customer Frasier Crane, would have his own spin-off show Frasier which ran successfully for eleven seasons (1993-2004). John Lithgow was originally chosen to play Frasier, but the he turned it down.
When Ted Danson chose to move forward in 1993, the writers offered the role of Sam Malone to Woody Harrelson. But Harrelson didn’t want to continue the show without Danson.
Jay Thomas, a radio talk show host who also played the recurring role of an ice hockey player named Eddie LeBec, answered a caller who asked what it was like working on Cheers. Thomas then went on to make unsavory remarks about his co-star Rhea Perlman, who also happened to listen to his show that morning without his knowledge.
Although Thomas later denied that his comments referred to Perlman and that they were really meant for her character Carla, they cost him his Cheers stint anyway. It resulted into Eddie’s demise in the show (by an ice resurfacer).
Ted Danson wore a hairpiece to fit to his character Sam Malone, who was also known as hair-obsessed. When Danson accepted his Emmy trophy in 1990, he surprised the audience with the literally (almost) bald truth — his hair was thinning.
However, the truth is that there was no laugh track. In 1983, a disclaimer was put forward on the show that Cheers was taped in front of a live audience — a direct response to the viewers who were complaining about the volume of the “laugh track.”
It is probably because the role of a psychiatrist seemed to be in conflict with Alley’s Scientology beliefs. Cheers colleague and Frasier star Kelsey Grammer himself attested that Alley won’t do a show about a psychiatrist.