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There’s a lot more to know about ‘It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia’ than you thought (30 Photos)
When the 12th season of everyone’s favorite show about the bar keepers with hilariously bad moral compasses kicks off in 2017, it will tie with the 1960’s show
My Three Sons as the 2nd longest-running live-action TV sitcom in the history of television. However, they still have to get through 2016 with Season 11, so let’s hope the effects of sniffing gasoline don’t get to them before they can reach that milestone. Here are a few facts you probably didn’t know about the gang from Paddy’s Pub.
Paddy’s Pub is supposed to be a traditional Philly bar somewhere in the south side of the city. In reality, the building used for the bar is not actually in Philadelphia. The location that’s used for the bar’s exterior is the Starkman Building in Los Angeles.
Mrs. Mac’s home is actually located next to McElhenney’s real childhood home.
Since Danny DeVito was only available for 20 days for shooting during season 2, the production crew had to work on all 10 episodes of the season at once, often shooting scenes from multiple episodes in one day.
After a short 6-episode first season, the show hadn’t exactly wowed anyone. FX demanded that a big name actor join the cast to attract attention for the second season. Since Danny DeVito knew president Landgraf, he met with them and talked about the show, adding that his kids were fans. After the meeting he agreed to take on the role of absentee father Frank Reynolds, essentially saving the show.
There is a Russian adaptation of the show named, “It’s Always Sunny in Moscow.”
At the end of every episode, the “RCG Productions” credit plays a message backward. Each season the message is different.
The cast actually never drinks on set or during filming, despite their characters being complete alcoholics.
The episode “The Gang Cracks The Liberty Bell” was inspired by a historical tour of Philadelphia that the cast went on.
Vice in 2010 that his idea for Charlie to dress in a green body suit for games was inspired by a real person. A friend of McElhenney’s would dress up the same way for all of the Philadelphia Eagles games.
Olson was disappointed that Sweet Dee’s character wasn’t as funny as her male counterparts and only agreed to be on the show if she were as funny as the men. Olson recalled the incident to Metro, “He [Rob] said,’We don’t really know how to write for women, because we just kind of write for ourselves.’ And I said, ‘Well don’t write for a woman, just write another funny character and I’ll make it a woman.’ So I’m glad that I trusted him, and I’m glad that he wasn’t lying.” Though the writers admit they didn’t handle Sweet Dee’s character the best in season 1, they eventually elevated her character to be one of the raunchiest women on television.
In the episode “Sweet Dee Has a Heart Attack” (season 4), the mental health clinic where Frank (Danny DeVito) ends up, is a a nod to the movie “One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest” (1975).
During series development, the network said they would give writers $500 if they could come up with a better name than “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.”
When series leads Rob McElhenney, Glenn Howerton and Charlie Day started out making the pilot, they were unknowns. In 2004 the first episode was called “It’s Always Sunny on TV” and featured them as 3 struggling actors all auditioning for a role as a cancer patient. It cost less than $100 to make. After shopping it around to the networks they finally found support in FX president John Landgraf, who gave them $400,000 to film a proper pilot and changed the setting to Paddy’s Pub in Philadelphia.
As you’re probably aware, McElhenney gained 50 pounds for the 7th season in response to his theory that everyone gets progressively better looking with time. He ate 5,000 calories a day to achieve his curvaceous appearance, but his original plan was for the entire cast to get just as fat as he did. All except for DeVito, whom he wanted to get dramatically skinnier. No one else was on board with the plan.
That $400,000 was still just a third of the normal budget for a network sitcom. The 3 actors shared a trailer and McElhenney was still so strapped for cash that he had to keep waiting tables at the West Hollywood Cafe all throughout the first season.
Sweet Dee was originally another woman in the original pilot. Jordan Reid, then-girlfriend of McElhenney, played the role before Kaitlin Olson, and was expected to continue playing her when the show was picked up by FX. However, when she and McElhenney broke up, she was recast. Kristen Wiig was also considered for the role before it went to Olson, who ended up marrying McElhenney.
Mac and Dee aren’t the only ones married in real life. Day and Mary Elizabeth Ellis, who plays the Waitress, are actually hitched offscreen. They met in 2004 when they played incestuous twins on
While the pilot was called “It’s Always Sunny on TV,” the original title of the show was simply “Jerks.” The show was marketed by FX as “Seinfeld on crack.”
McElhenney and Olson actually own a real bar in Philadelphia. It may not be called Paddy’s Pub, but the two funded Mac’s Tavern, a sports bar that opened in 2010. Dishes include Mac’s chili and Sweet D’s turkey BLT.
Fred Savage betrayed his wholesome
The Wonder Years roots and directed several episodes of the show. He sought out work with them because he said he sees his own “worst qualities” in the characters. McElhenney hired him because he “wanted to know if he really loved Becky Slater or if it was just Winnie all the way.”
You might have noticed that the character Dennis has become increasingly sociopathic over the years, and this is done on purpose. Howerton has stated that he always knew he wanted Dennis to be a full-blown sociopath, but he wanted to be cautious about it at first. He said, “I always knew he was socio, I just wasn’t ready to go all the way with it at first. It’s been fun to tease it out and let it build over the years. “
Before the show premiered, Howerton auditioned for other things as well. One of the casting calls he attended was for
Superman Returns, the 2006 film that eventually starred Brandon Routh. He also auditioned for the role of Peter Quill in Guardians of the Galaxy.
Remember the episode “Flowers for Charlie?” It was a take on the book “Flowers for Algernon,” and features Charlie transforming into a super genius after “taking an experimental drug.” This episode was written by “Game of Thrones” writers D.B. Weiss and David Benioff. Apparently, they’re huge fans of the show.
The opening credits are some of the cheapest in TV history. One night, Howerton, Day and McElhenney shot them on a camcorder as they drove around the city. It cost them nothing but the gas needed for the car.
You can actually visit the Dick Towel website that was featured in the Season 5 episode called “Paddy’s Pub: Home of the Original Kitten Mittens.”
Most of the horribly catchy songs that have appeared on the show are written by Charlie Day himself.
It took the Emmy’s 8 years to recognize
It’s Always Sunny, and it wasn’t even nominated for a big category. In 2013, it was nominated for Outstanding Stunt Coordination for a Comedy Series or a Variety Program, but they didn’t win.
The McPoyles are based off of a real family McElhenney knew when he was growing up in Philadelphia. However, they were not actually psychotic inbreds.
The highest-viewed episode of the series is the Season 7 premiere titled “Frank’s Pretty Woman.” 2.28 million viewers tuned in.