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Facts About Charlie’s Angels
John Forsythe was not the original choice for the voice of Charlie Townsend. Gig Young had been cast to do the voiceovers but showed up drunk. Producer Aaron Spelling called John Forsythe late at night in a desperate attempt to find a replacement before he had to hand the pilot over to ABC executives.
John Forsythe was uncredited during the entire run of the show. He thought it would add to the mystery behind the character of Charlie Townsend.
David Doyle was often mistaken for actor Tom Bosley. Originally, producer Aaron Spelling wanted Tom Bosley for the role. His character’s surname on the show is an in-joke reference to this fact.
The original title of the show was The Alley Cats. Kate Jackson suggested the name be changed to Harry’s Angels, after the original name of their boss and because she had seen angel imagery in producer Aaron Spelling’s office. The name was changed to Charlie’s Angels to avoid confusion with the David Janssen show Harry-O.
When Farrah Fawcett-Majors left the show at the height of its popularity, Cheryl Ladd was cast as her character’s sister, Kris Munroe. Her first day on the set, she wore a t-shirt that said “Farrah Fawcett Minor” to break the ice.
The costume budget was over $20,000 per episode and there were at least 8 costume changes per episode. The most costume changes in an episode were 12, by Farrah Fawcett.
The iconic poster of Farrah Fawcett in the red swimsuit was supposed to be a promotional poster for the pilot of the show. She was the only actress to agree to the photo shoot. That poster would go on to become the best selling poster of all time. After her passing in 2009 from cancer, that swimsuit was donated to the Smithsonian Institute and can be seen in their American culture history collection.
Kate Jackson was given the leading female role in Kramer vs Kramer, opposite Dustin Hoffman. Due to her contractual obligations to Charlie’s Angels, she had to decline. The role ended up going to Meryl Streep, who won an Oscar for it. Kate held a grudge and became very unpleasant to work with, leading to her departure from the show at the end of the third season.
Charlie’s Angels was one of Gerald Ford’s favorite shows and he visited the set once.
The address used as the exterior shot for the Charles Townsend Private Investigations office is 189 N. Robertson Blvd., Beverly Hills, CA 90211.
An all-male spin-off with a female version of Charlie (named Toni, played by Barbara Stanwyck) was attempted. It was a backdoor pilot shot as part of the fourth season of Charlie’s Angels. The episode (and the name of the show if successful) was “Toni’s Boys”. It didn’t have the same appeal to viewers and, thus, the plans were scrapped.
The character of Julie Rogers was the only Angel who was never a cop.
When Kate Jackson left, Connie Sellecca, Shari Belafonte, Barbara Bach, Melanie Griffith and Michelle Pfeiffer were considered for the role that ultimately went to Shelley Hack.
The phone number for the Angels’ office was 555-0267.
The Angels visited The Love Boat in a 2-hour crossover special. The episode introduced the character of Tiffany Welles, a cop from Boston, who joins the team after Sabrina leaves to get married. Bosley and the Angels take a cruise on the Pacific Princess to track down a fortune in ancient artifacts and catch an art thief.
Kelly Garrett, played by Jaclyn Smith, was the only Angel to remain through the entire series.
All the Angels and Bosley drove Ford vehicles. Jill and Kris drove a Cobra, Sabrina drove a Pinto, Kelly drove a Mustang, and Bosley drove a Thunderbird.
The executive wanted to show Charlie, especially during sweeps, but John Forsythe would’ve demanded a great deal for the role and the producers thought it added to the mystery to keep him faceless.
John Forsythe never visited the set.
The actress originally cast as Kelly was Kate Jackson. However, she preferred the role of Sabrina.
We hope you’ve enjoyed these fun facts about Charlie’s Angels. While many attempts have been made to reboot or remake the show, none have been as successful as the original.
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