Stories of What Could Have Been have grown so numerous, we've had to split the page into to different sections.
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[[index]]
* WhatCouldHaveBeen/TwentyFour
* WhatCouldHaveBeen/{{Angel}}
* WhatCouldHaveBeen/BabylonFive
* WhatCouldHaveBeen/BattlestarGalactica2003
* WhatCouldHaveBeen/BuffyTheVampireSlayer
* WhatCouldHaveBeen/{{CSI}}
* WhatCouldHaveBeen/DoctorWho
* WhatCouldHaveBeen/{{Friends}}
* WhatCouldHaveBeen/KamenRider
* WhatCouldHaveBeen/{{Lost}}
* WhatCouldHaveBeen/MontyPythonsFlyingCircus
* WhatCouldHaveBeen/PowerRangers
* WhatCouldHaveBeen/RedDwarf
* WhatCouldHaveBeen/SaturdayNightLive
* WhatCouldHaveBeen/StarTrek
* WhatCouldHaveBeen/{{Supernatural}}
[[/index]]
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!!Other Shows

* On ''Series/TheVampireDiaries'', a deleted scene reveals Kelly Donovan, Matt's mother, as a succubus.
* In ''Series/TopGear'', the presenter originally planned for the Vampire rocket-car segment was James May. He had to back out due to a schedule conflict and Richard Hammond did it instead. The car crashed at 288 mph and nearly killed him. The car not only went off the track but rolled over and did an extended slide upside down. Hammond's height, generously listed as 5'7" and for which he is frequently made fun of, may have saved him from being decapitated. May is five inches taller. On the news segment where they watch the footage, notice Clarkson is doing most of the talking; you can see that May knows exactly that fact... his expression says it all. On the other hand, the bulk of the filming had been completed around 5 pm, but they had use of the track for another half hour. Hammond opted to take the rocket-car out [[AlwaysNeedWhatYouGaveUp one more time]], leading to the crash. Had he done the segment, the cautious May (compared to the risk-taker Hammond) might never have taken it out for one last run.
* ''Series/LawAndOrderSpecialVictimsUnit'': A plan was scrapped to reveal in the episode "Taken", when Olivia's mother dies, that her mother lied about being raped, followed by Olivia meeting her father. Unfortunately, many fans still haven't gotten the "scrapped" part and think that's AllThereInTheManual, which must have made for a very confusing Season 8.
* For ''Series/LawAndOrder'': Alana de la Garza's pregnancy was going to be written into Season 21. In spite of Law & Order's tendency to give minimal details about the character's personal lives, both Mike/Connie and Lupo/Connie had fanbases.
* ''Series/{{Heroes}}'': Forget Peter Petrelli's telekinesis. What ''really'' saved the world from getting a virus released on it in S2 was the [[TVStrikes Writer's Strike]]. As you might have been expecting, a whole section of the S2 DVD/Bluray release is devoted to WhatCouldHaveBeen without the Strike ("Untold Stories").
** Elle was supposed to be revealed as Claire's sister... and, of course, ''yet another damn Petrelli''. This was luckily dropped. [[spoiler:Though the writers briefly decided to imply that Sylar was a Petrelli for no discernible reason instead. Then it turned out Mama Petrelli lied about that.]]
** Being "revealed as Claire's sister" '''does not''' mean she would've been a Petrelli - all it required was for them to share a ''single'' parent, since they never specified whether the plan was that they be full-blooded sisters or half. As such, Bob Bishop might well have still been intended to be her father, but Meredith Gordon - who is blonde like both Claire and Elle - would almost certainly have been her mother. In turn, if Bob was still her father in this case, it would have made things fascinating if Creator/StephenTobolowsky [[RealLifeWritesThePlot hadn't badly hurt his neck and thus had a Bridge Dropped on His Character]], instead getting character development regarding his relationship with Elle and her mother that might've seen him RescuedFromTheScrappyHeap.
** Let's all breathe a heavy, sad sigh for the proposed ''Origins'' spinoff anthology series.
** The first season had plenty of plans that were abandoned, with Sylar originally being a Paul E. Sylar (and much older than the Sylar that was used), and a terrorist plot involving a character named Amid Halebi (who had a connection to Matt), and countless other differences in the plans...
** Before the series started, the plan was to have a revolving cast, with only a few characters from previous seasons returning the next. Strangely, that started to happen later in the series, but only with characters who were introduced after season one. Virtually every main character from season one either survived or is survived by a twin, and of now the main cast is still mostly season one alumni and new introductions. Meanwhile, main characters from other seasons, such as [[spoiler:Adam]], were promptly killed off when their existence wasn't relevant, or like [[spoiler:Monica]], completely forgotten.
* ''Series/CaptainPowerAndTheSoldiersOfTheFuture'': [[http://www.geocities.com/Hollywood/6213/articles/cpfeature.html This early article on the series]] has brief mentions of the head writer's plans for S2. And then [[http://www.geocities.com/Hollywood/6213/articles/ditillio.html S2 got canceled.]]
* [[Series/MysteryScienceTheater3000 Tom Servo]] was originally envisioned as "Beeper", an [[TheUnintelligible Unintelligible]] SilentPartner to Crow, making the robot pair a lot like [[Franchise/StarWars R2-D2 and C-3PO]].
** Another early idea was for the show to be about an alien who watched bad movies as a way of understanding Earth's culture.
** ''[[Recap/MysteryScienceTheater3000TheMovie Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Movie]]'' was originally conceived as an origin movie, revealing how Joel got to space and built the bots. However, the executives funding the movie wanted little to no riffing and it would lead to Joel's departure from the show.
** Now, ''that's'' an interesting WhatCouldHaveBeen there - how the series could have gone if Joel didn't leave!
** The last episode for season 6 was originally planned to be ''Series/MasterNinja III'', but a combination of being unable to get it and it being Frank Conniff's last episode lead them to use ''Film/SamsonVsTheVampireWomen'' instead.
** Before Creator/ComedyCentral cancelled MST3K, they offered the crew the idea to reformat the show to make fun of TV shows under a thirty minute time-slot.
** Creator/JerrySeinfeld could have been the host of MST3K, but when Joel Hodgson pitched it to him, he turned it down as he was in the midst of making his own series.
** Movies attempted to get but couldn't include the Creator/JohnTravolta and Lily Thomlin "romance" film ''Moment by Moment'' (which had the rights yanked at the last minute), the Creator/ElvisPresley western film ''Charro!'' (which was planned to be aired in Season 4) and the Creator/LeonardNimoy pilot movie ''Baffled!'' about a race car driver turned psychic occult detective.
* ''Series/SoWeird'' had its arc all planned out (including episodes about Fi's mom coming to terms with her alcoholism, one about Jack discovering that he was a knight in a past life (with help from Rebecca, who had known his past life), one about Fi helping a wandering spirit get to Heaven, and one where Fi finds a portal to Hell and goes there to rescue her dead father). Sadly, the lead actress left midway through, a replacement was cast, and the show --while still keeping its weird stories and characters -- got LighterAndSofter (making it more like a Disneyfied version of ''Goosebumps'') instead of DarkerAndEdgier.
* ''Series/TheXFiles'' episode "Musings of a Cigarette Smoking Man" was supposed to end with the CSM killing the Lone Gunmen for discovering his identity; the ending was changed because the writers wanted to leave it ambiguous how much of the story was true. In reference to this, one scene has the Cigarette Smoking Man read a story that he had published to a magazine and then complain that the ending had been totally changed.
* Once the fans revived ''Series/{{Jericho}}'' for a second season, only 7 episodes were allotted it. It was originally going to be much broader, with the story in Cheyenne expanded and a story in [[spoiler:New York City]] as well.
* ''Series/BlakesSeven'' was slated to continue into a fifth season, with the first episode revealing that the only character to die in the dramatic shoot-out at the end of Season 4 was Blake himself. Everyone else would merely have been stunned (aside from any actors who didn't wish to return) and the season would start with the crew as prisoners of the Federation. However, it was generally felt that the series had gone as far as it could go and rather than face the cost of building new sets (since the crew's starship and base had been destroyed at the end of Season 4) the BBC decided to can the show, although ratings were still decent. As a result, [[KillEmAll everyone dies]].
** Terry Nation wanted [[spoiler: the aliens invading the galaxy at the end of the second season to actually be the Daleks themselves. In fact, the idea of a Doctor Who/Blake's 7 crossover was popular with Tom Baker and some of the B7 cast.]]
* Creator/GeneRoddenberry wrote and produced sci-fi pilots that were never picked up for a regular series. ''Genesis II'' had six episode concepts written. ''Planet Earth'', aka ''Gene Roddenberry's Earth'' or ''Battleground: Earth'', reused characters and concepts, and was the inspiration for ''Series/EarthFinalConflict''. Concepts from both pilots were reused for a third pilot, ''Strange New World''. ''Series/{{Andromeda}}'' is based on notes for those series. A fourth pilot, ''The Questor Tapes'', was the inspiration for Data from ''Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration''.
* At one point in the 1970s, Creator/GeorgeLucas approached Creator/GeneRoddenberry to ask if the ''Franchise/StarTrek'' franchise was for sale....
* After the series ''Series/{{Andromeda}}'' came to an end, its original producer Robert Hewitt Wolfe, who was forced out midway through season 2, released a "Coda" on his website detailing where he had planned to take the series in its planned five-year run. To say that his original vision was different to what made it onto screen is an understatement. So is saying that it was better.
** Tyr would take command of the combined Nietchzean prides, Harper would become the controlling intelligence of the Consensus of Parts (by this time he would have already gotten laid and be over the crude sexual jokes), Rev Bem would become leader of the Wayists, and Beka would take the final action to defeat the Abyss using the Engine of Creation, already being AGodAmI by this point due to her prolonged use of the Engine and becoming even more of one when she merges with the Abyss (though this essentially results in both of them disappearing as they AscendToAHigherPlaneOfExistence).
* Apparently Creator/NeilPatrickHarris was considered for the role of Simon Tam on ''Series/{{Firefly}}''. That's right, [[WebVideo/DoctorHorriblesSingAlongBlog Neil Patrick Harris]] starring opposite Nathan Fillion, five years earlier.
** And they'd still be a doctor and a captain! But with HoYay!
** Also, judging from the shooting script of the first episode, Simon (and possibly, by extension, River) was supposed to have an English accent (Simon uses the word "maths" instead of the American "math"). But, this could also be attributed to show creator and pilot writer Joss Whedon's upbringing and education in the UK.
** Kaylee was originally going to be an Asian character, but Jewel Staite was cast instead. Understandable, but with the series' issues with Asian representation...[[UnfortunateImplications yeah.]]
** Speaking of unfortunate material, there was a proposed episode (that never made it to air) where the audience learns what was in the needle Inara was toting in the pilot during the flight through Reaver territory. Turns out it's a biological weapon that kills anyone who tries to touch her... which is discovered when Inara is gang-raped. Yikes.
* ''Series/AgentsOfSHIELD'':
** Nicholas Brendon initially tried out for the Mike Peterson/Deathlok role, but didn't get it.
** Melinda May was originally going to be a white woman named Althea Rice. The role was rewritten after Ming-Na Wen nailed her audition, and the character's name was thusly changed to avoid any UnfortunateImplications.
** Isabelle Hartley was originally going to be the girlfriend of the late Victoria Hand. Maurissa Tancharoen claims this idea ended up scrapped since the staff didn't want to deal with the InternetBackdraft the show would've gotten over killing off ''another'' lesbian character.
** There were plans for a spin-off centered around Comicbook/{{Mockingbird}} and Lance Hunter, which would have launched after Season 2. Poor Mockingbird can't catch a break!
** [[spoiler: Tripp]] was originally supposed to die in the Season 1 finale, essentially serving as a MauveShirt. [[spoiler: BJ Britt]]'s performance made the character so popular with the writers and fans that he was kept around until Season 2's mid-season finale, where he was then killed off for maximum shock value.
* Before getting picked up by Creator/{{Netflix}}, ''Series/JessicaJones2015'' was originally pitched to ABC, which likely would've meant toning down some of the content. Comicbook/MsMarvel was also originally going to appear as a supporting character (as she did in [[Comicbook/{{Alias}} the comic]]), but plans for the upcoming ''Captain Marvel'' movie killed any chance of that. Ms. Marvel was subsequently replaced with Comicbook/PatsyWalker.
* Marvel had plans for a Comicbook/{{Mockingbird}} series that was to air on Creator/ABCFamily. The series would have featured Bobbi Morse as a geeky college freshman who ends up recruited by a spy agency, with a tone that was compared to "''Series/{{Alias}}'' [[JustForFun/XMeetsY meets]] ''Series/{{Felicity}}''."
* Cameron getting caught in a jeep explosion at the end of the first season of ''Series/TerminatorTheSarahConnorChronicles'' was supposedly written in case Summer Glau wanted to leave the role at the end of the series. If she had, the resolution would have been that Cameron had her skin burned off in the fire and regrew a new one for the new actress, either like Cromartie did early in the series or by having similar abilities to the T-X of the third film.
** One vocal part of the series HateDom was that the series was set in the present day, instead of being set in Future War as basically ''Series/BandOfBrothers'' [[RecycledInSpace with cyborgs]]. The season two cliffhanger indicates this is what the third season would actually have been. [[ScrewedByTheNetwork But, of course, Fox]]...
** Actually, thanks again to the Writer's Strike, the whole plot for Season 1 had to be dropped and canceled. The Jeep explosion was supposed to be the halfway point. Remember that blonde chick, Cheri Westin who was mysterious, "broken goods" (as Morris called her) and seemed like she'd play a big part, but then suddenly vanished in Season 2, never to be mentioned again? Yeah, she was supposed to have a sub-plot about being the victim of blackmail from the same person who made Jordan Cowan (the cheerleader who killed herself near the beginning) commit suicide. Because John got to know her, he unwittingly got dragged into a similar type of situation where his identity would be compromised. Guess we'll never know who made poor Jordan kill herself, or what dark secrets Cheri had...
* The producers of the show ''Series/OnceUponATime'' originally wanted to cast Lady Gaga as the Blue Fairy, but her management never replied back to them.
* In an early version of the script for the ''Series/QuantumLeap'' episode that introduced Alia, the "Evil Leaper", the major difference from the aired version occurred at the end. Alia has a gun on Sam, and is being ordered to kill him. Sam talks her down, appealing to her better nature, and gets the gun from her. Then, Sam ''points the gun at Alia!'' He tells her that he can't let her go, that the "stakes are too high." Al is very encouraging of this development, and Ziggy even says that Sam has to shoot her to protect the timeline. Alia, needless to say, feels a tad betrayed. Then she Leaps out. One can only presume that sanity prevailed, because this out-of-character display of hypocrisy never made it to air.
** The producers planned to have Sam leap into [[Series/MagnumPI Thomas Magnum]] for the season four finale, but the plan was nixed by reluctance from Tom Selleck (who apparently hadn't been in on the idea until late) and rumors that a ''Magnum P.I.'' movie was in the works, so they might not be allowed anyway.
* In the beginning, Saban's ''Series/MaskedRider'' was supposed to be a very different show. Several big differences included Edenoi exploding, no Ferbus, a different Albee and Molly, different voices for Chopper & Magno, no original villain footage... Yet, Ted Jan Roberts is still Dex. As seen in [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=djnZUgzZEs0 this pilot]].
* The pilot for ''Series/{{Chuck}}'' originally had Natalie Martinez cast as a neighbor and love interest for Chuck Bartowski. The character, Kayla Hart, was dropped because the show's cocreators thought she made the plot too complicated. (They also realized it was unlikely a Nerd Herder would have two women pining over him.) [[http://tv.yahoo.com/chuck/show/40464/photos/9 Her photo]] was released with some early cast promo shots.
** Word has it that originally the character of Ellie was either conceived as a friend of Chuck's, not his sister '''OR''' that Ellie took on some of the lines from removed Kayla, explaining some of the unintentional IncestSubtext in the pilot.
* ''Series/{{Torchwood}}: Children of Earth'' was originally going to have Mickey and Martha on the team, but this was unfortunately scrapped due to actors' scheduling conflicts.
* The original pilot of ''Series/{{Dollhouse}}'' was quite different and is available as an extra on the last disc of the Season One DVD set. Several scenes from it were placed in episodes 2-5. Interestingly, in this version Saunders almost can't be [[spoiler:a doll]], indicating that this was not a plot point planned from the beginning. And Topher doesn't approve of altruistic ''pro bono'' engagements, whereas he himself is behind one in the aired episode "Briar Rose".
* ''Series/DesperateHousewives'' had a weird take on an inversion early on. Throughout season 1, there was subtle build-up to a sub-plot, picked up by many fans, that [[spoiler:Tom Scavo]] is a bigamist. When this eventually went nowhere, creator Marc Cherry went on the record, explaining that they didn't feel it was right for [[spoiler:Tom]]'s character to be a cheater. Season and a half later, once the audience dropped its guard, a version of the plot - that Tom had a daughter by a pre-marital one-night stand - was bombarded into the show, taking everyone by surprise.
* The [[http://www.tvshark.com/read/?art=arc3792 original ending]] of ''Series/HarpersIsland'' featured [[spoiler: SerialKiller Henry Dunn getting away with the murders he commits and winning the heart of the protagonist Abby Mills, who doesn't have a clue.]] ExecutiveMeddling said no.
* In the late nineties, there was talk of resurrecting the cult ChannelFour gameshow ''Wanted'' with celebrities as a one-off tie-in for Comic Relief- instead, we got the first ''Celebrity Series/BigBrother''.
* ''Series/StargateSG1'' would have went down a very different road if the writers had their way. Originally it was planned to end after the fifth season, and be continued with a theatrical film which in turn would lead to a sequel series, and if that wasn't picked up, another film. Another plan was to have a series of SG-1 theatrical films run alongside the sequel series to allow it to have its own characters and plots. The series was cancelled by Showtime, but the Sci-Fi Channel picked it up and gave it a sixth season. The writers then planned that season to be SG-1's last, but the ratings were so strong, MGM and Sci-Fi decided to give it another season and axed their plans for the film. So their script was then reworked into a grand series finale, which would lead to the sequel series. The seventh season ended up doing even better than the sixth, and the series was renewed yet again. So finally the script had to be reworked into the two part season finale "Lost City" with the same basic plot of the film, but a lot trimmed out and removed. The ideas and plot elements written for the sequel series were used to create Stargate Atlantis.
* "Lost City" originally was going to have Sam and Jack kiss, when it was planned to be the series finale, as a nod to all the shipping requests and theories among fans, which wouldn't have been the first time. The irony is they were never intended to be a couple, as this was pure fan speculation/wishes, and in fact they had separate love interests intended for them but both characters were eventually axed.
* Originally the entire Goa'uld fleet would have been destroyed at the end of "Lost City" as Anubis would have conquered the entire Goa'uld empire and sent a fleet of hundreds of ships to attack Earth, essentially ending the Goa'uld plotline with a bang. After an 8th season was confirmed, the writers decided to extend the Goa'uld story to the end of that season (which they believed would finally be their last).
* The original press information for ''Series/StargateAtlantis'' included a scientist called Dr. Benjamin Ingram, African Canadian. They brought back Dr. Rodney [=McKay=] from SG-1 instead.
** This is because David Hewlett read for the part of Benjamin Ingram and got the part. He then basically said "why don't we just bring my SG-1 character back instead of having me play a different character?" The producers agreed.
* Stargate Atlantis was not conceived originally as a spin-off series, but as a sequel to SG-1. The idea of Atlantis being a lost city of the Ancients was an idea the writers had for a long time, and its discovery was supposed to end SG-1, essentially as a way to move the franchise forward. Atlantis would have been discovered under Antarctica, rather than a distant galaxy, and the Stargate would have become public knowledge. The SGC would have been relocated to Atlantis, with the teams and command being less military in orientation and international in membership. Contact with new alien races and travel between galaxies would have been more commonplace, and the Replicators alongside rouge androids the Ancients built would have been the major villains (probably an inspiration for the Asurans), not the Wraith. Most of this was axed when SG-1 looked like it would not end anytime in the near future, and the basic premise had to be reworked into a spin-off that ran alongside SG-1.
* Tok'ra characters were planned to have a much larger role in the franchise. Lantash was also originally planned to be a main character in Stargate: Atlantis, and start a romantic relationship with Samantha Carter, which is hinted at in SG-1, but was cut short after the character was killed off. Anise, another Tok'ra, was planned to be SG-1's answer to Seven of Nine and be a potential love interest for Jack O'Neill, but after it was discovered the character had no impact on SG-1's ratings, the writers happily dumped the character.
* It looked like the Franchise/StargateVerse was set for a happy ending, with a film planned where the Stargate program was going to be made public. [[ScrewedByTheNetwork But thanks to the SyFy channel]] [[FridayNightDeathSlot messing with Universe's schedule]], [[FranchiseKiller the IP is doomed.]] [[DevelopmentHell It's probably not going to get]] [[WhatCouldHaveBeen a proper ending.]] With the announcement of reboot films by Roland Emmerich that will ignore the SG-1 continuity, it's a sure fire bet we'll never see this film.
* Had it continued into a third season, the narrative of ''Series/StargateUniverse'' might have jumped a few weeks, a few years or a few hundred years into the future. The writers also didn't intend to leave Park blind forever.
* The DVD commentaries for mid-90's show ''Series/{{Profit}}'' have co-creators David Greenwalt (''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'') and John [=McNamara=](''Series/LoisAndClark'') talking about their plans for the Season Two arcs:
** Joanne would never have survived that trip to Ireland; the phone booth she was in during her last scene in "Forgiveness" would have been targeted by an IRA bomb - arranged by [[spoiler: Jim Profit]], of course.
** Pete Gracen would have been a senator, then he and Nora would have eventually divorced.
** Jim Profit, a full 10 years before [[Series/MadMen Don Draper]], would have been revealed to have [[spoiler: pulled a MartinGuerre, and gone back to kill the man whose identity he stole]].
** Jim would have engineered the poisoning of Chaz Gracen (who also would have still been married to Bobbie), and convinced him that his father was trying to kill him. He would then have eliminated Gracen Senior, thus reconciling Chaz and Pete.
** David Greenwalt wanted Jim to reappear in ''Angel'' as an employee of Wolfram and Hart, but because of Adrian's schedule and rights issues, this was scrapped.
* As much as Coy and Vance Duke were disliked amongst ''''Series/TheDukesOfHazzard'' fans, the idea of having all FIVE Duke cousins working together would have been pretty cool.
* Creator Dan Knauf dropped a few bombshells during a convention of how the now-canceled season three of ''Series/{{Carnivale}}'' would have started:
** Both Ben and Justin [[spoiler: would have survived their apparent "deaths" from the finale]]. Ben would have [[spoiler: ended up like Management, crippled and surviving on his own magic, manipulating the Carnivale to his own purposes]]. Justin would have [[spoiler: married Sofie, and supposedly had a child with her, though whether he ever found out she was his daughter was not mentioned]]. He would not have had the power he once had, though: [[spoiler: the shrapnel near his heart would have severely weakened him, reducing him to a figurehead and leaving Sofie and Iris as the true powers of the Ministry]].
** Jonesy [[spoiler: would also have survived the gunshot wound]]. He would have [[spoiler: returned to baseball to play for the Yankees, and stayed married to Libby]].
** The third season's theme would have been [[spoiler: Sofie's internal struggle of her good, human, side and her evil Omega side]].
** The opening scene would have been a small boy of about three, running through the New Caanan camp. He would have [[spoiler: approached Justin, flanked by Sofie and Iris, and called him "Daddy". The question of his parentage - Sofie or Iris as his mother, Ben or Justin as his father - would have been a driving plot point]].
* [[http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0285403/trivia Supposedly]] ''Series/{{Scrubs}}'' initially planned, if the show wound up being canceled after or during its first season to do a [[TheReveal reveal]] in its final episode that the Janitor was actually a figment of JD's imagination; as a result, they tried to avoid having him interact with anyone else. The show resolutely failed to get canceled, and eventually the actor playing the Janitor begged the writers to let him interact with other people, so this idea was dropped.
* The sci-fi series ''Series/OdysseyFive'' was supposed to end up with humanity changing into human-AI hybrids, which is certainly bold. Given the uneven writing of the show, I'm not sure if they could have pulled it off. Anyway, it was cancelled after one season.
* In the book ''Batman Begins and the Comics'', released in 2005, Julian Darius talks about a proposed [[http://www.kryptonsite.com/brucewayne/script.htm Bruce Wayne]] spinoff series. The show would have run for five to six seasons, and followed Wayne as he matured from a rambunctious 17-year old kid to a serious young man, and follow his travels from Gotham City to various parts of the world (where he would train). At some point late in the series, he would discover a large cavern under Wayne Manor, and he, Lucius Fox and several ''Polish workers in blacked-out buses'' would construct the Batcave. Wayne would have also met early versions of The Joker, Harleen Quinzel, Jonathan Crane and Edward Nygma, as well as Clark Kent. In the end, the rise of the big-budget superhero film (''X-Men'' came out in 2000) and an aborted plan for a film adaptation of Frank Miller's ''Year One'' script, as well as the reboot of the film franchise in 2005 killed this series stone-dead. Instead, Alfred Gough and his production team chose to create ''Series/{{Smallville}}'' instead. Almost ten years later, a "young Bruce Wayne" series [[Series/{{Gotham}} actually did materialise]].
* The cancelled TV adaptation of the ''ComicBook/GlobalFrequency'' comic book series would have seen storylines and concepts from the source material being adapted (including the ''Le Parkour'' one-shot, where a female member of the organization must race across London and stop a madman who plans to infect the city with the Ebola Virus) as well as episodes scripted by heavyweight comic writers, including series creator Creator/WarrenEllis.
* If ''Series/DefyingGravity'' had lasted beyond the first season, several plot threads would have been revealed. The team would obtain all of the "fractal objects" (like Beta) over the course of the show. Earth would have been revealed as a very messed-up place. Season three would have taken place either partially or completely on Mars, with two characters (Sharon and Walker) still alive on the planet when the team arrived. Nadia would have been revealed as a hermaphrodite (explaining fan theories) and would have turned into a man because of exposure to the fractal objects, and Goss would have a change of heart and end up helping the team at one point.
* ''Series/WizardsOfWaverlyPlace'': Justin was originally meant to be a friend of Alex, and not her brother.
** This isn't mentioning the thousands of Jalex fics, a fandom that supports this incestuous pair in a childrens show, a bunch of viewers who obtained unwanted NoYay, and two teenage actors who can't help their {{U|nresolvedSexualTension}}ST.
* ''Series/SonnyWithAChance'' was originally intended to play up a Nico/Sonny/Chad love triangle. For example, the pilot doesn't include Chad, and has Nico kissing Sonny's hand. A few hints of the Nico/Sonny side of the triangle survived into the 1st season scripts, but on the whole the show is only ever going to be Sonny/Chad.
** Before that, the series was going to be called ''Welcome To Mollywood'', and Sonny was originally called Molly.
** It was also briefly ''Welcome to Holliwood'' with Music/DemiLovato's character being named Holli (yes, it was spelled with an "i") before they settled on the final show title. YMMV on whether or not they chose the best title.
** The episodes that were going to be filmed after the ''Film/CampRock 2'' Tour were going to deal with the damaged Sonny/Chad relationship, [[RealLifeWritesThePlot but then Demi had a breakdown and assaulted a dancer on the tour and ended up going to rehab]] so the episodes were retooled to focus more on the sketches because it's not really Sonny With A Chance without Sonny. Originally, Demi was supposed to go back to work after rehab, but she decided to focus on her personal problems and her music career so the ''entire show'' was retooled into a {{defictionaliz|ation}}ed version of the ShowWithinAShow, ''Series/SoRandom''. Unfortunately, it seems as though we're never going to get to see Sonny and Chad get back together.
** Creator/DanSchneider has implied that he believes that ''Series/SonnyWithAChance'' was based on an idea he created and pitched to the Disney Channel a long time before that show actually aired. Had he ended up doing his version of the show he would probably still be working for Disney, it probably would have stopped him from making ''Series/DrakeAndJosh'', and that would have ended the successor shows ''Series/{{iCarly}}'', ''Series/{{Victorious}}'', ''Series/SamAndCat'' and ''Gibby''. That would have left gaping holes in Nick's schedule, torched the finances (as iCarly was an unexpected mega-smash hit) for at least 5 years and would likely have killed the careers of Creator/MirandaCosgrove, Music/VictoriaJustice and Creator/JennetteMcCurdy before they ever got off the ground.
** One other potential alternate future would've been Dan making his Sonny With A Chance show, but still doing ''Drake & Josh'', just on Disney. Which would have meant Cosgrove (who was an accomplished singer even back then) becoming a Disney starlet around the same time Disney were trying to figure out what to do with DevelopmentHell project for what eventually became ''Series/HannahMontana''.
* Speaking of ''Series/ICarly'', the title characters name was meant to be Sam, with the sidekick being named Kira. They couldn't get the website address for iSam though. So Sam became Carly and Kira became Sam. With Freddie keeping his name, it has the humorous consequence of swapping around what the PortmanteauCoupleName for the two main couples are. The JustFriends main character/male lead ship would have been called Seddie (instead of Creddie) and the JerkAss sidekick/male lead would have been called Kreddie (instead of Seddie) instead. Funnily enough, the LesYay ship on the show would almost be the exact same name, except it would be Kam (Kira/Sam) instead of Cam (Carly/Sam).
* Creator/GregRucka claims that there was enough serious love of ''ComicBook/GothamCentral'' by not just [[Creator/DCComics DC brass]] but by [[Creator/WarnerBros WB execs]] that a series was almost assured. It's not quite clear why it never got off the ground.
* For ''Series/PushingDaisies'', the character of Olive Shnook was originally planned as a lesbian and a former pop-up book maker before becoming a waitress and former horse jockey.
** The pop-up book creator concept was actually used with a minor character from the episode "Smell of Success" who had written some very bizarre pop-up books.
* ''Series/OnlyFoolsAndHorses'':
** Jim Broadbent was John Sullivan's original choice for the role of Del Boy. While failing to get the role, he did still appear within the show as DCI Slater, who made three appearances - all highly memorable.
** Enn Reitel, Robin Nedwell, and Billy Murray were also considered possible candidates for the role of Del Boy Trotter, before it went to Creator/DavidJason.
** John Sullivan intended for Chas & Dave to sing the series' theme song due to the success from their "Rockney" style of music (a mixture of rock 'n roll and cockney). However, they were unavailable having just recorded their hit record "Ain't No Pleasing You", so Sullivan was persuaded by Ray Butt to sing the song himself, which he did.
** In 1986, David Jason told John Sullivan at a dinner that he wanted to leave the show and further his career elsewhere, so the fifth series finale "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire" was written as the final OFAH episode, and would have seen Del leaving England with his friend Jumbo Mills to run a car business in Australia. A spin-off entitled ''Hot-Rod'' was planned, which would've been all about Rodney running Trotters Independent Traders with Mickey Pearce. However, Jason changed his mind and decided to stay on, and Sullivan rewrote the ending to show Del rejecting Jumbo's offer.
** In the first chapter of the early 2000s Christmas trilogy, "If They Could See Us Now" (2001), The BBC wanted to get the rights from ITV to use the actual ''Series/WhoWantsToBeAMillionaire'' gameshow with a special guest appearance from Chris Tarrant, but ITV refused because a plot point was that Del gave a correct answer and the quizmaster said it was wrong due to an error. They ended up with a blatant {{expy}} called ''Goldrush'', hosted by Creator/JonathanRoss.
* Not only was ''Series/{{Glee}}'' originally going to be a movie, it was a bit more dark with actual drug use and a sexual student-teacher relationship. Also there was going to be an Indian character named Ranjit. When Creator/ChrisColfer came in to audition, the writers made up a character for him and Ranjit was completely written out. Sure, Chris is great as Kurt, but you can't help wondering what Ranjit would have been like...
** The original pilot script for ''Series/{{Glee}}'' also did not include Sue Sylvester or any analogous character. She was written in because a higher-up suggested that the story needed an antagonist (a rare occasion of ExecutiveMeddling getting something right?) and was not originally intended to be a regular character until another project of Jane Lynch's fell through.
** Rumors have it as well that Sam was originally was supposed to be Kurt's football-playing boyfriend, but Ryan Murphy scrapped that idea after it got spread around the web. Eventually Blaine was written in as a potential love interest for Kurt.
** Another reason the Sam/Kurt story arc was dropped was after Murphy noticed Chord Overstreet's chemistry with Diana Agron, and decided to pair up their characters instead. So the popular season 2 Quam/Fabrevans ship was never meant to happen at all.
** Tina was originally meant to be a much bigger character than she turned out to be, with a plan for her to sing "Erotica"/"Justify my Love" in the Madonna special, and for her to have a season 3 adoption storyline with her adoptive mother portrayed by Margaret Cho. It was scrapped.
*** Fans speculate that the writers simply lost interest in Tina and decided to put more focus on Kurt.
** Fandom-wise: One of Kurt and Blaine's [[PortmanteauCoupleName portmanteau couple names]] would probably have been Burt, if it hadn't been for the fact that that is the name of Kurt's dad.
** The biggest one right now: What if Cory Monteith lived instead of [[AuthorExistenceFailure died]], and thus Finn dosen't get [[TheCharacterDiedWithHim killed off]]?
** Through this isn't confirmed, it is likely that Glee 5x03 did reveal a bit of what would have happened had Cory lived. [[spoiler: Rachel would succeed on Broadway and maybe do a Woody Allen movie, while Finn would become a Teacher, and they would reunite in what would have been a distant finale.]]
* After the finale of ''Series/AshesToAshes'' aired, producer Matthew Graham [[http://www.guardian.co.uk/tv-and-radio/tvandradioblog/2010/may/21/ashes-to-ashes-final-episode gave an interview]] (and you can consider yourself warned for massive spoilers) where he talked about the three possible endings the writers had considered, and one alternate version to the third they almost shot before going with the version they chose:
** Ending #1: [[spoiler: Alex woke up in 2008, the world of 1981-1983 was all a dream. Discarded because "we didn't think anyone would want that because we didn't want that with Sam".]]
** Ending #2: [[spoiler: Alex woke up, but chose to "go back" by killing herself, which would have been a repeat of how ''Series/{{Life On Mars|2006}}'' ended]].
** Ending #3: [[spoiler: Alex is dead and has to move on with her existence,]] which is the one they chose. There was almost a [[spoiler: cameo from John Simm, reprising his role as Sam Tyler, which they storyboarded and apparently everyone liked. Sam would have walked out of the Railway Arms at the end, instead of Nelson, and the ending was ultimately discarded because "it would steal all of Keeley's thunder, it would undermine Ashes as a show and also Sam's supposed to be dead, so he should be in heaven. It suddenly made him seem like a superhero – he could go from purgatory to heaven and back again."]]
* In 1969, Film/TheThreeStooges (Moe, Larry, and [[SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute Curly-Joe]]) filmed a pilot episode for a TV series called ''Kook's Tour'', which would have featured the "retired" Stooges traveling around the world, with every episode filmed on location. Larry Fine, however, suffered a stroke in 1970, that killed his acting career and plans for the TV series. Larry died in January 1975 after a second stroke that left him in a coma. Moe planned to continue The Three Stooges, with [[SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute Emil]] filling in for Larry, but Moe died in mid-1975. As a result, the pilot episode of "Kook's Tour" is the last Three Stooges short.
* A Venezuelan one: the (in)famous [[TheNineties early nineties]] SoapOpera ''Por Estas Calles'' originally was, and was promoted in the pre-air sales as, a typical pink soap named "Eva Luna", about a WronglyAccused girl who had to hide and change her name, taking the titular name for herself. They even had filmed several chapters when the 1992 coup attempt against the president happened and suddenly there wasn't the right atmosphere for a "normal" soap. Then the head writer decided to retool the story to take place in ThePresentDay instead of the atemporal Soap Opera Time, and go for [[SlidingScaleOfIdealismVersusCynicism realism and cynicism]], expanding the cast and introducing LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters. The Exceutives loved it so much that they immediately ordered the erasure of the already filmed chapters. The only things that survived from the original were the already cast actor, and the plot about the heroine being wrongly accused and changing her name while hiding, now made gritty and dark.
** More fun: one of the characters of ''Por Estas Calles'' was "El Hombre de la Etiqueta" (The Tag Man), a ex-policeman turned vigilante SerialKiller after the murder of his son, going for common crooks and placing a morgue tag with the word "Irrecuperable" ("unreedemeable") on his victims. Despite being the main enemy of the heroine (whom he mistakenly believed the real murderer of his son), the character gained a MisaimedFandom of his own. Had the soap not had enough ExecutiveMeddling to make the original head writer resign, he would have had a RedemptionEqualsDeath destiny, instead of the KarmaHoudini ending he eventually got.
* ''Series/MortalKombatConquest'' was supposed to resume for a second season after the KillEmAll ending (which would have been AllJustADream), but money ran out suddenly and they couldn't make it.
* ''Series/UnnaturalHistory'' had ended after only one season, possibly (hopefully only temporarily delayed instead of) canning these plots and plot threads: "[[http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/posts.php?discussion=raonkyeayxthdw01dcaheda6&page=8#198 the Gobi adventure ... involving both the tomb of that most famous of all Mongolians and the rumored Mongolian death worm ... followed up by a Rashomon 'what I did this summer' reflection ... the triangular relationship between the boys and Maggie gets increasingly more complicated, Henry's long thought-to-be-dead g.f. reappears (someone with more skills than he's got and anger issues) — as well as Jasper's mother.]]"
* [[http://www.cnn.com/2004/SHOWBIZ/TV/02/17/television.casting.reut/index.html Sherman Hemsley]] or [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lJBnmoXkCHY Ol' Dirty Bastard]] as ''Series/MisterEd''?
* At one point, there were plans for the GrandFinale of ''Series/{{Seinfeld}}'' to end with a scene where the MainCharacters, after spending a year in prison, would gather at the coffee shop, Kramer having become a religious freak, Elaine having a mohawk and piercings, and George wearing a dress, before Jerry walks in, looking completely ordinary, sits down and says cheerfully, "Well, ''that'' was tough.
** During the summer of 1993, when Creator/JerrySeinfeld was answering fans' questions on the Prodigy bulletin board system, someone asked who had won the infamous Contest. Jerry notes that it was George, and that he and Creator/LarryDavid were tempted to have a scene early in the next season where George would discover that the contest had ended a year earlier and no one had bothered to tell him.
* ''Series/{{Farscape}}'': Chiana was originally intended to have been killed by Durka in her very first episode, but the writers liked Gigi Edgley so much that it was OnlyAFleshWound. Zhaan was originally a male character called Zen. Also, in very early versions of the storyline, Scorpius would have been a puppet character, and Crais's sidekick.
** Reported possibilities for the aborted Season Five as well as the main Scarran-Sebacean arc that got [[WrapItUp wrapped up]] as "The Peacekeeper Wars": return appearances by previous villains Furlow and Natira, and the long-awaited Chiana-centric plot arc picking up on the Nebari and their plan for galactic domination through VD.
** The original plan for Rygel was that we would see him take back his empire from his traitorous cousin, like he promises to do one day in the pilot. Unfortunately, an episode with just one more Hynerian puppet caused so many filming issues that everyone realized there was no way they could do an episode with a whole planet of them. Luckily, this plot thread did get wrapped up in the comics.
* Young Jeezy, not Saigon, was the rapper originally slated to be managed by Turtle on ''Series/{{Entourage}}''.
* In ''Series/{{Survivor}}'', Shane Powers was intended to be on ''Heroes vs. Villains'', but was dropped in favour of [[CreatorsPet Russell Hantz]], who more or less wound up continuing his ''Samoa'' adventures (while somehow knowing he didn't win the latter) and had the advantage of nobody actually really ''knowing'' who he was, similar to how Amanda and James had the advantage in ''Micronesia'' and Rupert in ''All stars''.
** A player quit ''Fiji'' before filming even began so it was the only cast to be an odd number.
** Similarly, Shane and Sandra amongst others were intended to return in ''Micronesia''.
** The fourth season, which ended up taking place in the Marquesas Islands, was originally supposed to have taken place in the country of Jordan. Due to the fact that 9/11 had occurred less than two months before the contestants were supposed to be shipped out, the idea of sending civilians to a Middle Eastern country to play on a game show was scrapped for obvious reasons.
* In ''Series/BigBrother 12'' US, there was a fourteenth houseguest named "Paula" who quit during sequester and wasn't replaced. It's likely this is why the first head of household competition had to have Andrew sit out as the odd-man out. (He got immunity for the first week, though.)
** And in ''Series/BigBrother 8'' US, Jessica had a completely different nemesis who quit and was replaced with Carol. This nemesis was actually a dance rival of hers; rather than Carol who was an ex friend from high school and not as much of a nemesis compared to the other two. (i.e., Carol's response was just a shrug when she saw Jessica, and Jessica had to ''think'' of what they had against each other.)
* The famous [[SoapOpera Telenovela]] ''La Señora de Cárdenas'' by the late Jose Ignacio Cabrujas was going to end with the titular Mrs. Cardenas going back with the terrible husband she had left, after his presumed redemption; but then, in a strange variant of ButIPlayOneOnTV, many fans began to write and even tell Cabrujas in the supermarket queue "Please, don't make her come back with that JerkAss". Cabrujas then decided to get his protagonist to hook up with another love interest instead.
* Two words: ''[[http://tv.gawker.com/#!5758177/jay-leno-digs-up-rare-footage-of-rob-lowes-unaired-80s-show-mean-jeans Mean Jeans]]''
* Several different people could've been the host of ''FamilyFeud''. Geoff Edwards (best known for ''[[TreasureHuntUS Treasure Hunt]]'') confirmed on the newsgroup alt.tv.game-shows that he had been tapped to host the original ''Feud'' in 1976, but he was committed to a pilot at the time, so Richard Dawson got the job. Dawson confirmed in a 2010 interview that Creator/WilliamShatner got a crack, and it is believed that Jack Narz of ''{{Series/Concentration}}'' fame was in the running at one point. Joe Namath auditioned for the 1988 revival, which went to Ray Combs. And Music/DollyParton auditioned for the 1999 revival, for which Louie Anderson got the nod. (Anderson was replaced by Richard Karn, then John O'Hurley, then Steve Harvey.)
* After ''Series/ThePriceIsRight'' announcer Johnny Olson died in 1985, the show held on-air auditions with Gene Wood, Rich Jeffries, Bob Hilton, and Rod Roddy. Bob Hilton was apparently tapped to take the role, but he declined since he was hosting a pilot that ultimately never sold, so Rod Roddy got the job instead. Given that Hilton is only in his early 60s now, he could still be announcing today had he gotten the nod in 1985. (By comparison, Charlie O'Donnell announced ''Series/WheelOfFortune'' until his death at age 77, and Johnny Gilbert still does ''Series/{{Jeopardy}}'' in his upper 80s.)
** Creator/PhilHartman, of all people, also auditioned to be ''Price'' announcer after Olson's death. But unlike the men mentioned above, Hartman never actually got an on-air audition.
** Similarly, the rotation of announcers after Rod's 2003 death included a radio news anchor named Art Sanders. Host Bob Barker really wanted Art to become the new announcer, and almost hired him on the spot. Had either of these situations come to be, then Rich Fields (who announced from 2004-2010) likely wouldn't have gotten his big break.
** After Bob Barker's retirement in 2007, several people auditioned for the show, including Mexican TV personality Marco Antonio Regil (who hosted Mexico's version of ''Price'' years before), ''Rosie O'Donnell'' and experienced game show hosts [[Series/{{Whammy}} Todd Newton]], [[Series/RussianRoulette Mark L. Walberg]] and [[Series/DoubleDare1986 Marc Summers]]. Drew Carey got the part.
** The producer's first choice for Barker's replacement? [[Series/SportsCenter Dan Patrick]], who turned the job down.
* Speaking of game shows, one of the first things that comes to mind when one mentions ''Series/WheelOfFortune'' is longtime hostess Vanna White — she was ridiculously popular in the 1980s, and no doubt helped entrench it as one of the longest-running game shows ever. One wonders how things would've panned out if original hostess Susan Stafford hadn't quit. (Interestingly, ''Wheel'' was not originally intended to have a hostess. The board was supposed to be mechanical and self-revealing like the original ''{{Series/Concentration}}'' board, but they didn't have time to finish it before taping of the {{pilot}}s, so they simply brought Susan in to turn the letters.) Furthermore, host Pat Sajak took over from Chuck Woolery about a year prior; one wonders where the show would've ended up today had Chuck stayed.
** From 1981-89, Sajak was hosting the daytime (NBC) and syndicated nighttime versions concurrently. He stepped down from daytime to host a talk show for CBS which didn't go anywhere. Creator/MervGriffin had several worthy candidates in mind for daytime host, but went with the completely inexperienced Rolf Benirschke, a former place kicker for the San Diego Chargers who was completely out of his element. After a mere six months, the daytime version hopped over to CBS with new host Bob Goen. While daytime game shows as a whole fell out of favor in the early 1990s, one can't help but wonder what would happen if a more capable name had helmed the last few months of NBC ''Wheel''.
* Had ''Series/{{Titus}}'' not been ScrewedByTheNetwork, the fourth season would've featured Dave and Tommy in their own Neutral Space episodes, as they did with Papa Titus in season 2, and with Erin in season 3.
* Originally, {{Divine}} (yes, ''[[Creator/JohnWaters that]]'' Divine) was going to play Peggy's mother on ''Series/MarriedWithChildren'', but that plan was quashed by his untimely death. This is why we never actually ''see'' Peggy's mom on the show; out of respect.
** It was also planned to be a dual role. Divine in his male persona was going to play Uncle Buck. The family dog being named Buck was also a reference in honor of the role that never was.
* Originally, the British panel game ''Series/{{QI}}'' was to be hosted by Michael Palin, with Creator/StephenFry and Alan Davies as team captains. Fry would have captained the "Clever-Clogs" team each week while Davies would have been captain of the "Dunderheads".
* Several unsuccessful attempts have been made to spin off a TV series from ''Film/TheAdventuresOfBuckarooBanzaiAcrossThe8thDimension''. ''Buckaroo Banzai: Ancient Secrets and New Mysteries'' got as far as a concept pilot created using CGI (it's available on the DVD release of the movie), but it never got off the ground.
* ''Series/{{Degrassi}}'' has a few. Two which revolve around Adam are: He was supposed to be an androgynous lesbian named Zoe, and his birth name was originally not Gracie (it was Chelsea).
** YMMV on Zoe: only WordOfGod would confirm it, but that might've been a way for them to audition different girls for the role while remaining tight-lipped about their plans to introduce a transgender character.
** Heck, if they had stuck with the original concept of ''[[WorkingTitle Ready, Willing and Wired]]'' there'd be no [[Series/DegrassiJuniorHigh adults with backstories]], the Emma character wouldn't necessarily have been product-of-a-teen pregnancy Emma and the setting would've been quite explicitly a tech magnet school, forcing them to stick with the sort of kids who ''could get into'' a somewhat selective school...
** The S11 character conceived as "Noah" was renamed Jake when Justin Kelly was cast in the role [[note]] His character on ''Series/TheLatestBuzz'' had been named Noah[[/note]].
* According to this [[http://magiranger.livejournal.com/25135.html interview]], ''Series/MahouSentaiMagiranger'' could have been the first Franchise/SuperSentai to feature a [[DistaffCounterpart female red ranger]].
** Sentai actors who have confirmed that they auditioned for other roles in tokusatsu include Mikiho Niwa (auditioned for [[Series/GoGoSentaiBoukenger BoukenPink]], ended up as [[Series/TensouSentaiGoseiger GoseiYellow]]), Tsuyoshi Hayashi (auditioned for [[Series/BakuryuuSentaiAbaranger AbareKiller]], ended up as [[Series/TokusouSentaiDekaranger DekaBlue]]) and Yasuhisa Furuhara (auditioned for [[Series/KamenRiderKabuto Kamen Rider Sasword]] ''and'' [[Series/GoGoSentaiBoukenger BoukenSilver]], ended up as [[Series/EngineSentaiGoOnger Go-on Red]]).
** IdolSinger Shoko "Shokotan" Nakagawa, a big fan of Sentai, has auditioned to play a Pink Ranger on the show several times but never been cast - reportedly due to a lack of gymnastic ability. She did make a guest appearance as an alien in ''[[Series/TokusouSentaiDekaranger Dekaranger]]''.
** Yutaka Kobayashi was offered the role of Captain Marvelous in ''Series/KaizokuSentaiGokaiger'', but had to turn it down because he was committed to ''[[Manga/ThePrinceOfTennis Tenimyu]]''. He later went on to play Kaito Kumon[=/=]Kamen Rider Baron in ''Series/KamenRiderGaim''.
** Hideaki Tsukada, who was one of the producers on ''Dekaranger'', confirmed in an interview that he had tried to interest Toei in making a sequel or second series; but the idea wasn't picked up.
** Naruhisa Arakawa, writer of ''Series/KaizokuSentaiGokaiger'', stated in an interview that his original idea for Don's backstory was for Don to have witnessed his father's horrific death at the hands of Zangyack. This was dropped in favor of having Don be "an ordinary guy."
** Speaking of ''Gokaiger'', it originally wasn't meant to have ''that'' many returning characters. It was said that the only returning characters would have been those connected to Gokai-Oh-related toys (which mean those from Gorenger and the series between Gaoranger and Gokaiger). One of the returning actors expressed how awesome it was on a Twitter post and it didn't gain traction until the 2011 Japan Earthquake and Tsunami, where a special Twitter set up by the original actors to calm the children, inspired others to try to return to their roles, even if they had retired from acting.
** Gai Yuuki of ''Series/ChoujinSentaiJetman'' nearly didn't get to show up in the Great Legend War. One of ''Gokaiger'''s writers was one of the writers for ''Jetman'' and actually got into a fist fight with one of the other writers over the man's fate and if he should come back.
** Thanks to owners fiddling around with the Mobirates toy, they had learned that it had already been preprogrammed with the cry of "''Series/KamenRiderOOO''!" a year before ''Film/KamenRiderXSuperSentaiSuperHeroTaisen'' was even announced. It is highly possible that they had planned for the Gokaigers and OOO to team up while OOO was still airing, but was scrapped.
** Series/TokusouSentaiDekaranger's original planned title was "Sirenger", but Toei was denied the copyright because there was already an anime with that name. [[HilariousInHindsight Ironically]], the anime also had as part of the title "[[Series/TokumeiSentaiGoBusters Tokumei Sentai]]".
** ''Series/ChourikiSentaiOhranger'' was meant to have been a much darker season, but had to have a ReTool early in its run after the Tokyo sarin gas attacks. Some elements of the show involving superpowers and ancient civilizations were felt to be too similar to the claims made by the Aum Shinrikyo cult.
** ''Series/KagakuSentaiDynaman'' was originally planned to be a baseball-themed Sentai team before it was changed to be about science and StuffBlowingUp. However, the team's suits still somewhat resemble baseball uniforms.
** ''Series/SeijuuSentaiGingaman'' was originally meant to have been "Gaoranger". However, since [[Anime/GaoGaiGar a certain Sunrise mecha anime with the name "Gao" in it]] was running at the time, they changed it and reused the name [[Series/HyakujuuSentaiGaoranger a few years later]]
** The same thing happened with ''Series/KousokuSentaiTurboranger'' as it was once named ''Series/GekisouSentaiCarranger''.
** In ''Series/DaiSentaiGoggleFive'', a different actress was initially cast as Miki, and she filmed several episodes before being replaced by Megumi Ogawa.
** The Blue Ranger of ''Series/ZyudenSentaiKyoryuger'' was initially conceived by writer Riku Sanjo as a 40-something man with a wife and children, but Toei rejected the idea. Instead, the character is in his early 30s and lives with his sister and young niece.
** Nao Nagasawa, known to Sentai fans as Nanami Nono in ''Series/NinpuuSentaiHurricaneger'', stated after the announcement of Kyoryuger that she had signed on for a guest role in the series; but she never appeared, possibly due to scheduling conflicts.
** After Torin was revealed on the show as [=KyoryuSilver=], Sanjo claimed in an interview that he'd had trouble deciding whether Silver should be Torin or Dantetsu Kiryu, and that it could have gone either way. [[spoiler:Dantetsu does ultimately become Silver at the end of the show.]]
** Before ''Kyoryuger'' began, producer Takahito Ohmori stated in an interview that the production team had decided the show should have only one female Ranger in order to [[ValuesDissonance make the team look stronger]]. However, Koichi Sakamoto later convinced him to have Yayoi join the heroes as the second Kyoryu Violet (and later, Nossan's sister Yuko briefly becomes the second Kyoryu Cyan, making three women on the team.)
** Sometimes, early promotional material will mention character titbits that ultimately never made it into the show (such as ''Series/SamuraiSentaiShinkenger'''s pre-release material stating that Kotoha worked in a wood carvings shop before becoming a Shinkenger) or planned character details later changed in on-screen canon (early ''Series/TensouSentaiGoseiger'' information stated that Blue Ranger Hyde was to be the team leader, but they ultimately didn't have one, even going so far as to base an episode around the characters agreeing that they don't need an official leader.)
** Kenji Ebisawa, who portrayed Go-on Black in ''Series/EngineSentaiGoOnger'', stated in an interview that he struggled to play the character as the tough guy originally written in the scripts. As a result, the character became TheComicallySerious and later sided with the other Go-ongers against the more uptight and no-nonsense Go-on Wings.
** ''Series/GoseiSentaiDairanger'' originally cast Keisuke Tsuchiya as Ryō and Keiichi Wada as Kazu, and they filmed early promotional material before it was decided to switch their roles because of Wada's martial arts skills.
* ''Series/VRTroopers'' was originally titled ''Cybertron''. It would have starred Creator/JasonDavidFrank in the same role Brad Hawkings would play later on. The karate master would have been the one to give Jason's character the Cybertron powers and Jason's character would have been bothered by a Bulk and Skull-type duo. The villain Grimlord would have still been there. However, the popularity of Jason's role as Tommy on ''Series/MightyMorphinPowerRangers'' would lead him to return to the series and Brad Hawkings would take his role. Cybertron's theme song ended up being reworked as the MMPR theme "Go Green Ranger Go" and Cybertron itself would be renamed to the well-known VR Troopers after [[Franchise/{{Transformers}} Hasbro complained]].
** When ''VR Troopers'' reached their third season, Saban realized they were running out of Metal Hero series and picked up the more recent ''Series/JuukouBFighter''. However, Saban got cold feet about doing a major retool with ''VR Troopers'' and decided, in the end, to cancel ''VR Troopers'' and turn ''B-Fighter'' into ''Series/BigBadBeetleBorgs''
* ''Series/DadsArmy'':
** John Le Mesurier was initially approached to play Mainwaring and Arthur Lowe for Wilson, but it was decided they worked much better in the opposite roles.
** Writer Jimmy Perry wanted to play Walker, but worried that it might cause friction with the rest of the cast. Instead he made a guest appearance as a pierside entertainer in a series 1 episode.
** Jack Haig was considered for the role of Jones, and did end up [[TheOtherDarrin taking over the role]] for part of the stage show tour while Clive Dunn had other commitments.
** The show was to include a character called Private Bracewell as a member of the main cast. He did appear in the first episode, but was cut because the writers felt his character was too much like Godfrey's.
** Miss King, a character who appeared in the first series, was intended to have had a larger role as the FanService character of the cast. For whatever reason, it didn't work out and she [[ChuckCunninghamSyndrome vanished]] after series one, with the fanservice position largely taken over by Mrs Pike.
** An American adaptation of the show called ''The Rear Guard'' was planned, but scrapped when the pilot wasn't successful.
* ''Bottom'': A fourth series was written in the mid-90s, but rejected by, according to Rik Mayall: "Some fat lesbian bitch" at the BBC. In 2012 Mayall and Adrian Edmondson began writing a Bottom spin-off called "Hooligan's Island", which was picked up by the BBC. Edmondson would later pull out after a change of heart. With Mayall's death in 2014, one can only wonder what could have been.
* The ''Series/LoisAndClark'' episode "Soul Mates" was fun, but the ReincarnationRomance would have made a heck of a lot more sense if John Shea had been available to play Clark's eternal archenemy who wants to marry Lois. The fact Tempus doesn't really fit the role is even {{lampshade|Hanging}}d:
-->'''Lois''': I'm not saying I'm buying into any of this stuff yet, but it is kind of bizarre that Tempus, of all people, is behind the curse. I mean, Comicbook/LexLuthor, I could understand, but...
** Also, Kevin Sorbo was considered for the role of Superman.
* ''Series/{{Rome}}'' had plans for five full seasons. If not for the cancellation at the end of season 2, the second and following seasons could have depicted history with the same eye for details as the first one. To quote creator Bruno Heller:
--> "The second [season] was going to end with the death of Brutus. Third and fourth season would be set in Egypt. Fifth was going to be the rise of the messiah in Palestine. But because we got the heads-up that the second season would be it, I telescoped the third and fourth season into the second one, which accounts for the blazing speed we go through history near the end."
* Prior to starring in ''Series/WizardsOfWaverlyPlace'', Music/SelenaGomez would have been cast in a ''Series/LizzieMcGuire'' spin-off series called ''What's Stevie Thinking?" as the titular Stevie, Miranda Sanchez's sister a pilot episode was filmed, but not picked up.
** She was also cast in a "''[[Series/TheSuiteLifeOfZackAndCody Suite Life of Zack and Cody]]''" spinoff called ''Arwin'', following the misadventures of the ManChild repairman. Again, a pilot episode was filmed, but the show was not picked up.
* The Creator/AdamWest ''Series/{{Batman}}'' was cancelled by ABC, but NBC was willing to pick up the show for a fourth season. Unfortunately, all of the sets had been destroyed just a week before and NBC was unwilling to pay for new sets.
** During the crossover with ''Franchise/TheGreenHornet'', Robin was originally supposed to defeat Kato, but Creator/BruceLee got really angry, so it was changed to a draw. Even though Burt Ward was a legitimate martial artist, he was nowhere near Lee's level, and a lot of fans found it hard to believe Kato didn't outright win.
** An outline for an episode featuring Two-Face was submitted, where Clint Eastwood would have played a news anchor who was disfigured by an exploding TV, but it did not go through as the character was considered too grotesque to be made campy. The story would be adapted into an issue of ''Batman '66''.
* The 1996 TV movie adaptation of ''Comicbook/GenerationX'' was supposed to be a pilot for a proposed TV series, but the movie's negative reception killed this idea in its tracks. Considering the [[AdaptationDecay quality]] of said movie, this is probably a good thing. Still, a live-action TV show based on an ''Comicbook/XMen'' spinoff would have been interesting.
* The ''Series/MalcolmInTheMiddle'' episode in which the family took a vacation to a water park leaving ear-infected Dewey behind with a babysitter (played by Bea Arthur) was originally going to culminate with the sitter dyeing Dewey's hair black and calling him "Pepe" as they head for the Mexican border. The producers found this too dark and disturbing, so they instead had the sitter die of a sudden heart attack during a dance together.
* ''Series/HannahMontana'':
** According to a lawsuit filed against Disney by a writer who claimed the show was his idea, it would have originally featured a male protagonist and was called ''Rock and Roland.'' How much of that is true isn't clear, but the possibility is there.
** In its development stages, the show was to be set in school and involve a movie star, not a pop singer. It was to be called ''Better Days'' and be a star vehicle for AlysonStoner of ''Film/CampRock'' fame. [=JoAnna=] "[=JoJo=]" [=LeVesque=], Jordan [=McCoy=] of American Juniors, and Taylor Momsen of ''Series/GossipGirl'' were also considered for the role.
** Music/MileyCyrus had originally auditioned for The Lilly Truscott role, which went to Creator/EmilyOsment. And Lilly's last name was to be "Romero".
** "Anna Cabana", "Alexis Texas" and "Samantha York" were to be the names of the pop singer alter ego, until Miley suggested "Hannah Montana".
** The creators early on believed that it would be hard for then 13-year old Cyrus to remember so many aliases, and changed the protagonist's name from ''Chloe'' to Miley to make it easier. And it was Zoe before that. The name was changed because it was too close to the name of the title character in rival network, Nickelodeon's ''Series/{{Zoey 101}}''.
** Billy Ray Cyrus only turned up to offer moral support and help his daughter with her lines at the audition. He did not want to play the dad, but Disney felt his RealLife rapport with Miley was convincing and entertaining enough for him to get him the role of Robby Ray.
* Had ''Series/VeronicaMars'' gotten a fourth season, the plan was a ReTool into "Veronica Mars: FBI Trainee.". The new season would fire everyone except Creator/KristenBell and go with an all new cast. A short was included on the Season 3 DVD set.
* ''Series/{{Benson}}'''s eighth season would've fetured Gene Gatling winning re-election and Benson moving on to become a senator (it wasn't made clear whether this meant "state senator" or "U.S. senator").
* ''Series/{{Sliders}}'': The idea was thrown around of revealing that Maggie's biological parents were Colonel Rickman and her universe's version of Wade (this would have meant Maggie's universe was in the future compared to ours).
** There was a proposed episode that would have shown what happened to Wade after she was taken to a Kromagg breeding camp without Sabrina Lloyd having to return to the show, via the gang coming upon a device that made them experience past events from the perspective of other people. Maggie would have been Wade, Diana would have been Mrs. Mallory, Mallory would have been a Humagg soldier in love with Wade, and Rembrandt would have been a sympathetic Kromagg scientist.
* ''Series/ForeverKnight'''s writers wanted to take the focus off Nick's redemption in season 3. They tried to write out both Janette and Natalie, but Geraint Wyn Davies threatened to quit if Natalie was taken out. There was also going to be a promotion to captain for Schanke, but John Kapelos turned it down.
** The ending was originally to have Lacroix saying the last few lines of ''Theatre/RomeoAndJuliet'' at the very end, but this was nixed because the producers wanted the show just open ended enough to avoid major hurt in syndication.
* ''Series/{{Highlander}}'' wanted a spinoff with a new female immortal, and pitched quite a few of them in season six. But none clicked and despite initially not wanting Amanda as the lead, they got her anyway. The Raven title came from a plan to make immortal Alex Raven, from one of those eps, the spinoff lead, but that fell through.
** The season six plot was originally going to be made as a movie, set 20 years after Richie's death.
** Methos was originally a short-term character for season 3, but the fans liked him so much he was kept.
** Tessa's death wasn't originally planned, but had to be written in when Alexandra Vandernoot chose to leave the show.
** Adrian Paul could have played a re-cast Connor [=MacLeod=]. The writers throw this around for a while in the beginning, and even Adrian didn't know after casting whether he'd play the movie character or a new one.
** Also, Creator/RonPerlman auditioned for the part of Duncan. He did show up in season 5's "The Messenger" as the false Methos.
* ''Series/{{Tracker}}'' was originally written with Mel and a younger sister, but the sister was replaced by Jess.
* Fox at one point had plans to turn Creator/MyNetworkTV into an over-the-air version of Creator/{{Fox News|Channel}}. Is it no surprise that this didn't happen?
* ''Series/{{ER}}'': Carol Hathaway was supposed to die from her drug overdose--indeed, dialogue in the episode indicates that chances of recovery are slim--but test audiences liked her character and were intrigued by the hints of a romantic past with Doug Ross, and so, she was revived. The character went on to be one of the show's most popular, Doug & Carol one of its (and TV's) best pairings, and her portrayer received an Emmy. This was even lampshaded by Carol's portrayer, Julianna Marguiles, upon accepting her award, who noted, "A year ago at this time, I was dead."
* ''The $10,000 Series/{{Pyramid}}'' originally had ten boxes on the big Pyramid, each with a subject the contestant had to identify in 60 seconds (which is what TV Guide printed in their synopsis the week it premiered on CBS). Two nights before taping the pilot, creator Bob Stewart realized that there was no way anyone could get ten subjects in 60 seconds, so he had a 2x4 plank nailed over the bottom four squares.
* In the 1980s, there was going to be a TV movie that would unite the casts of Marvel's two biggest live-action shows of the previous decade: ''Series/TheIncredibleHulk'' and ''The Amazing Spider-Man''.
* [[Series/{{Seinfeld}} Michael Richards]] was offered the starring role in ''Series/{{Monk}}'' but he turned it down.
* This happened twice to ''Series/LetsMakeADeal'':
** On the 1984-86 revival (titled ''The All-New Let's Make a Deal''), announcer Dean Goss hosted two deals. According to Goss himself, this was a trial run to see if he had the chops to take over for a retiring Monty Hall should the show be picked up for a third season. It wasn't.
** Likewise, Hall stepped out of retirement to attempt an AuthorsSavingThrow on the 1990 revival, mainly because new host Bob Hilton was poorly received. Hall's plan was to carry the show to the end of its first season, then seek a replacement for Season 2, but Season 2 never came.
* ''Series/GoodLuckCharlie'' was originally called ''Love, Teddy''
** Charlie's name was originally ''Daisy''
* ''Series/TheSarahJaneAdventures'': Had Series Five been completed, the final three stories would have included one where Mr Smith (Sarah's alien computer) became human, one that involved a secret thirteenth floor at Rani's work experience, and a big finale that would have revealed Sky's true identity and written out the Trickster permanently. Beyond that, had there been a Series Six, Creator/RussellTDavies wanted to bring Ace back for a story (as with the Brigadier and Jo previously). This story would possibly also have seen a cameo from the Seventh Doctor, as it would have depicted how Ace eventually left the TARDIS.
** After Creator/ElisabethSladen had been diagnosed with cancer, the production team considered a Halloween special to help maintain the series' presence (at first wanting something interactive, then deciding to do an animated adventure).
** Also, a ''lot'' of ideas were considered for Series Four which never came to fruition. Half of ''Magazine/DoctorWhoMagazine'''s "The Sarah Jane Companion: Volume Three" is devoted to what might have been for the series one way or another.
** However, the production team never considered continuing the series without Lis, or replacing her.
* In 1980, Creator/StephenJCannell and Glen A. Larson joined forces to create, write and executive produce a pilot about night workers called ''Nightside'' - imagine if Creator/JJAbrams and Creator/JossWhedon collaborated on a TV series and you'll get how awesome this prospect was. Unfortunately the pilot, though made, didn't sell (Cannell: "It was funny as hell, but it just didn't work").
* ''Series/TheLAComplex'' was planned as a spin-off of ''Degrassi'' following Manny Santos to Hollywood, but they chose to make it a freestanding franchise.
* Blue of ''WesternAnimation/BluesClues'' was supposed to be a cat, but they said that there were too many TV shows where the main character was a cat on when the show was produced (''WesternAnimation/GarfieldAndFriends'' and ''WesternAnimation/EekTheCat'', to name two), so she was changed into a dog.
* ''Series/IDreamOfJeannie'' was originally planned to have Jeannie with -- guess what? -- light brown hair, mainly to avoid comparisons with the blonde Samantha from ''Series/{{Bewitched}}''. However, Creator/SidneySheldon, the show's creator, couldn't find one, so the role -- and TV stardom -- fell to blonde-haired Barbara Eden.
* In ''Series/{{Leverage}}'', Hardison's arch-rival hacker Chaos was originally going to be played by Zoe Saldana. Creator/WilWheaton got the part, but the alternative makes quite an interesting thought.
* Music/MichaelJackson's 1995 ''Primetime Live'' interview, the first he granted after his 1993 child molestation scandal, could have been a lot different if all of his ideas for it were used. According to ''Esquire'', Diane Sawyer wouldn't have been the only person interviewing him -- she would have been joined by Barbara Walters, Peter Jennings, OprahWinfrey (who interviewed him before the scandal broke), and '''Creator/HowardStern!''' ''Vanity Fair'' noted that Jackson also appealed to the Royal Family to have Princess Diana and Queen Elizabeth II make appearances -- the former to support his complaints on the tabloid press and the latter to ''knight him for his charity work''.
* [[http://www.vanityfair.com/online/oscars/2012/12/paul-feig-season-two-freaks-and-geeks This article]] describes what the creators of ''Series/FreaksAndGeeks'' think they would've done with a second season. Among the plans: Sam having to support his alcoholic drama teacher, Kim getting pregnant (with the father not necessarily being Daniel), and Neal in swing choir (though they acknowledge that [[Series/{{Glee}} another show ended up covering similar ground]]).
* In ''Series/{{Smallville}}'' the character of Adam was originally going to be revealed to be Bruce Wayne, but the producers couldn't get permission to use the character because of the then-in-production ''Film/BatmanBegins''. They salvaged their plans in later seasons by transferring Bruce's role in the comics to Oliver Queen.
* There were originally plans for a second season of ''Series/TheMysticKnightsOfTirNaNog'' called ''Mystic Knights: Battle Thunder'', but Saban cancelled it in favor of putting its budget towards ''Series/PowerRangersLostGalaxy''.
* In a DVDCommentary for ''Series/{{Merlin|2008}}'' one of the writers mention that they were going to try and bring back Guinevere's treacherous-yet-sympathetic hand-maiden Sefa back for an episode. They didn't manage it, and she became an example of WhatHappenedToTheMouse
* On ''Series/{{Charmed}}'', the character of Prue was killed off due in part to difficulties Shannen Doherty had with several people on set, including costar Alyssa Milano (Phoebe.) It finally reached a breaking point when Shannen allegedly said "either she goes or I go." How different would everything have been post Season 3 had Alyssa went instead? Phoebe would have died instead of Prue, Piper's character development from mousy middle sister to Badass oldest sister wouldn't have happened, and the Cole storyline would have likely been very different. Similarly, Constance M. Burge left around the same time.
* Jim Broadbent was originally slated to play the role of Lord Whiteadder in the ''Series/{{Blackadder}} II'' episode "Beer", but was unable to do so due to scheduling conflicts. This would have had the pleasing symmetry of all Miriam Margoyles's roles (the Spanish Infantia in ''The Black Adder'', Lady Whiteadder in ''Blackadder II'' and Queen Victoria in ''Blackadder's Christmas Carol'') being opposite Broadbent (who played the Infantia's interpreter and Prince Albert).
* There was serious talk of Mike Brady dying if ''Series/TheBradyBunch'' had got a season 6, due to Robert Reed's constant conflicts with the producers and writers.
* Carl Reiner originally wrote ''Series/TheDickVanDykeShow'' as ''Head of the Family'' starring himself. It bombed, but the pilot was retooled with Van Dyke in the lead role and was a hit.
* Betty White and [=Rue McClanahan=] switched roles on ''Series/TheGoldenGirls''. White was offered Blanche due to playing Sue Ann Nivens on ''Series/TheMaryTylerMooreShow'' and Mclanahan had played a ditzy character named Vivian on ''Series/{{Maude}}'' which lead to her being offered Rose. However, there was fear of Blanche being too much like Sue Ann and Rue didn't feel comfortable with Rose and they swapped.
** Also, this original iteration might not have had Bea Arthur at all. When the show was first pitched to her, Arthur declined, saying, with her as the DeadpanSnarker, [=McClanahan=] as the ditz, and White as the maneater, it sounded too much like "Maude and Vivian meet Sue Ann Nivens." It was only after they decide to swap roles that Arthur said, "Now '''that''' sounds interesting."
** Additionally, the series was supposed to be about the three ladies and a gay cook named Coco, with Sophia only supposed to be a recurring DropInCharacter. However, the positive reaction to Creator/EstelleGetty as Sophia led to them writing her in as a regular and writing Coco out (hence the reason he [[ChuckCunninghamSyndrome disappears without a word]] after the pilot episode.)
* ''Series/{{Being Human|UK}}'' had several cast changes between the pilot and the first series. Mitchell was originally played by Guy Flanagan, Annie by Andrea Riseborough, Herrick by Adrian Lester, and Lauren by Dominique Mcelligott.
** Initially, the show wasn't going to be made at all. It was one of several pilots aired by the BBC in 2008, with the plan to choose the most successful to make into a full-length series. They went with ''Phoo Action'', a "dramedy" based around futuristic antics, kung-fu, and TheyFightCrime. However, its commission was cancelled when the BBC decided the scripts weren't good enough, and ''Being Human'' was then commissioned instead after fans successfully petitioned for it to be ''Phoo Action'''s replacement.
* ''Series/{{Frasier}}'':
** Kirstie Alley is the only actor from ''Cheers'' to not reprise her role on ''Frasier'', reportedly because Scientology does not believe in psychiatry, and Frasier is a psychiatrist. In the later episodes of ''Cheers'', around the time Lilith and Frasier were going through their separation, Frasier and Rebecca nearly ended up in bed together. Wasting a perfectly good [[UnresolvedSexualTension UST]] plot...
** Kirstie Alley claimed in one interview that her being a Scientologist had nothing to do with her never appearing on ''Frasier'', and at least one of the show's writers (Ken Levine) said in a radio interview that they never considered having Kirstie Alley on, mainly because they weren't sure how to write her in, as Rebecca and Frasier hardly interacted on ''Cheers''. Alley also said once she auditioned to play one of Frasier's [[GirlOfTheWeek girlfriends of the week]], but was turned down, because the producers thought [[YouLookFamiliar that would be kind of weird]].
** Lisa Kudrow was originally cast as Roz, however after the first few days of filming the producers decided that her quirky humor didn't fit the part and they hired Peri Gilpin instead (according to Kudrow, Gilpin was their first choice, but switched her for Kudrow for some reason, then simply restored order by bringing Gilpin back.) Plus, imagine how this would have affected ''Series/{{Friends}}'' if Kudrow had remained on ''Frasier''.
** Frasier's brother Niles wasn't in the original concept and hadn't been mentioned on ''Cheers''. The inspiration for the character came after the producers saw a headshot of David Hyde Pierce and noted his brotherly resemblance to Kelsey Grammer.
** There were talks about having [[TheGhost Maris]] make a physical appearance on the show, but the idea was scrapped when they realized that no human alive would be able to fit the bizarre descriptions of the character's appearance.
* Most of the cast of ''Series/{{Moonlight}}'' was different in the original pilot. Josef was supposed to have been played by Rade Šerbedžija and have a more older-and-wiser look (plus an Eastern European accent fitting an Old World vampire), rather than Creator/JasonDohring's snarky young-looking businessman with a [[Film/WallStreet Gordon Gekko]] feel. To be fair, though, Dohring does a good job nonetheless. Also, Beth and Coraline were originally played by Shannon Lucio and Amber Valletta, respectively, before being replaced by Sophia Myles and Shannyn Sossamon. Alex O'Loughlin is the only main actor to avoid being recast.
* ''PeepShow'' was originally conceived as a "live action ''BeavisAndButthead''" with Mark and Jeremy commenting on clips from various TV shows, never leaving their front room and using point-of-view shots to show their view of the TV set. After a pilot was made, Mitchell and Webb wanted to get more from the characters, which led to writers Armstrong and Bain opening up the world away from the sofa and turning the idea into a sitcom - but keeping the POV shots.
* ''Series/TeenWolf'' had several of these, mostly changed thanks to actors being unavailable or becoming unexpectedly popular.
** The Alpha Pack was meant to have come to Beacon Hills for the Kanima, but due to Jackson's actor leaving very abruptly in between season, they had to hastily write him off along with any prospective plots.
** Isaac was meant to die in the finale of Season 2, but his unexpected popularity with fans caused him to live on.
** Erica and Boyd were meant to have a storyline of their own which included them becoming a couple, but Erica's actress leaving along with contract issues with Boyd's actor led to them both being killed off, Erica especially abruptly.
** [[spoiler: Kate Argent's return was meant to happen earlier, but along with the actress being unavaible the writers decided season 2 was packed enough as it is.]]
** Chris Argent and Isaac Lahey were meant to develop a father-son bond in the fourth season, but thanks to Isaac's actor leaving that isn't happening. There is potential for it to happen at a later date since his actor specifically asked to be written off in a way that allowed him to return.
* According to actor Dwight Schultz, he read for the role of Dr. Wayne Fiscus on ''St. Elsewhere''. However, before he went in to read, he ran into producer Bruce Paltrow, who had several years earlier gotten into a fight with Schultz because of their disparate politics, and Paltrow told him in no uncertain terms that "there's not gonna be a Reagan asshole on this show." Thankfully producers of ''Series/TheATeam'' didn't care about Schultz's politics.
* Aaron Sorkin and company originally had Sidney Poitier in mind for the role of the President on ''Series/TheWestWing''. One can easily imagine the line, "They call me ''Mister'' President ..." However, Poitier's agent quoted a salary figure that was so massive Sorkin figured it was a backhanded way of saying "not interested," so they turned to Martin Sheen instead.
** The original plan was also for the President to be more or less a supporting character, appearing for only a scene or two each week. This idea died as soon as Martin Sheen knocked his first scene right out of the park.
* Storylines abandoned or changed on ''Series/EastEnders'' over the years have included:
** The storyline surrounding Ronnie switching Kat's living baby with her own dead one was cut short both because of a flood of viewer complaints, and because Ronnie's actress claimed to have hated the storyline.
** "Mad" May was originally to have kidnapped Dawn's baby Summer, but this was changed due to the [[TooSoon then-recent]] disappearance of Madeleine [=McCann=]. Instead, May kidnaps Dawn with the intention of delivering and stealing the baby for herself; but Dawn escapes.
** In a similar example, an episode that was to have shown Lucas Johnson [[DisposableSexWorker murdering a prostitute]] was changed to him kidnapping a random woman from a club, because of the high-profile murders of several sex workers in Ipswich along with [[MoralGuardians complaints]] that the episode was going to be shown before the 9pm "watershed". He did later murder a prostitute to pass off her corpse as Denise's, but the murder wasn't shown onscreen.
** A series of special episodes sending the Mitchells to Spain had to have them going to a seaside resort in the UK instead, because it would have been too expensive to film on location overseas.
** The Ferreira family was going to be the centre of a huge storyline where bullying patriarch Dan was murdered by the rest of the family, who would then have to cover up the death. This had to be changed when Dan's actor (an Indian citizen) ran into problems with his permit to work in the UK, and was forced to leave the show. The others were given a new storyline where when Ronny needs a sudden kidney transplant, the family discovers that their friend Tariq is really their half-brother. This storyline, which fans called "Kidneygate", became very unpopular and contributed to the Ferreiras being written out shortly afterwards. Elements of Dan's planned murder were recycled for Den Watts's death the following year.
** Barry Evans was to have killed Janine when he forces her onto a cliff to make her confess that she married him for his money. Instead she accidentally kills Barry, who falls and hits his head after she pushes him away.
** When Suzy Branning's actress departed at the end of 2008, some of her planned storylines for the following year were given to Janine instead, including her being the one to accidentally kill Danielle.
** A storyline involving Grant Mitchell raping Tiffany at Christmas was dropped because Ross Kemp refused to shoot it.
** Lorna Cartwright was supposed to have become a prostitute and been gang-raped; but her actress was worried about the effect the public response would have on her young son, and chose not to renew her contract.
** Peggy Mitchell was planned to have an affair with a much younger man: initially Alfie, but it was then decided to set him up with Kat and have Peggy get together with Dennis Rickman instead. However, the whole storyline was dropped when Barbara Windsor left the show for health reasons.
** During Mike Gibbon's run as the show's producer there were plans for a massive cast cull which would have included, controversially, one of the show's few characters of colour being killed by an armed robber and several characters dying in an IRA bombing. The BBC feared public backlash and being targeted by the [[MoralGuardians Broadcasting Standards Council]], so the scripts were rejected and Gibbons demoted.
** In the 1980s, there were plans for Nick Cotton to have begun an affair with Lofty Holloway. Nick's actor John Altman felt that this would be [[SuddenlySexuality out of character]], and objected; so the show's co-creator had Nick written out.
** Peggy Mitchell was the original choice to have been guilty of Archie's murder, but when Barbara Windsor left the show, it was changed to Stacey instead. Several alternate endings featuring different suspects confessing to the murder were filmed, including one with Peggy as the culprit.
* About two years before shows like ''Series/TheIncredibleHulk'' and ''Series/WonderWoman'' became front and center, there were actual plans for a series involving ComicBook/BlackWidow and ComicBook/{{Daredevil}}. Angela Bowie, then-wife of Creator/DavidBowie was to be the Widow and Ben Carruthers was to be Daredevil. However, all that came out of that was just photo shoots of the two actors in costume.
* Had Bill Bixby not [[ActorExistenceFailure passed away due to prostate cancer]], there would have been another installment of ''LiveAction/TheIncredibleHulk'' TV movies following ''The Death of the Incredible Hulk'' where the titular creature would have been resurrected, but it would have caused him to gain Banner's intelligence.
* ''Beane’s of Boston'', an Americanization of the popular Britcom ''Series/AreYouBeingServed'', was developed by series creators Jeremy Lloyd and David Croft in collaboration with producer GarryMarshall. It never got past the pilot stage, and the pilot has never aired anywhere. The cast included John Hillerman (''Series/MagnumPI'') as Capt. Peacock, Tom Poston (''Newhart'') as Mr. Rumbold, Alan Sues (''Laugh-In'') as Mr. Humphries, Charlotte Rae (''The Facts of Life'') as Mrs. Slocombe and Lorna Patterson (the TV series version of ''Private Benjamin'') as Miss Brahms.
* ''Series/{{Hollyoaks}}'':
** It was planned to have Loretta's friend Chrissy arrive on the show and reveal that as children they had murdered another child, and were now living under police-protected identities. This was abandoned because the mother of James Bulger, who died in similar circumstances, objected to the storyline. The whole thing was scrapped, Chrissy never appeared (though her actress was cast in a guest role) and Loretta left the show shortly afterwards.
** Clare Devine had storylines planned for a longer run on the show, but when her actress quit, Clare was killed off and replaced with her sister Grace, who took over some of the plot intended for Clare.
** A reported storyline for 2010, which would have involved an intersex character coming to terms with their gender identity and going through gender reassignment surgery, never took place. However, the show introduced its first trans character (Jason Costello) at the end of that year.
** The idea of Robbie Roscoe raping John Paul [=McQueen=] was changed to make Finn O'Connor the perpetrator, since it was felt that Robbie had been introduced too recently to write him out by having him jailed for the crime.
** Nancy's storyline in the 2010 series of ''Hollyoaks Later'' was originally intended for Michaela [=McQueen=], whose actress came into conflict with the producer so her contract was cut short and she was written out of ''Later''.
** Louise Summers was to have been the one to try to kill Warren Fox in The Loft fire, with the reveal that [[NeverFoundTheBody he hadn't really killed her after all]]. The producers could not get her actress back, so Clare Devine was used for the storyline instead and Louise was considered murdered by Warren.
** Emily Lawrence was originally cast as Sienna Blake, but quit the show before the character's introduction, and was replaced by Anna Passey. Early promotional pictures and trailers featuring Lawrence were released before the role was re-cast.
** A planned storyline involving Ste's affair with a stripper who looks like his old flame Brendan was dropped. Instead, Ste has a one-night-stand with a guy who resembles Ste's late husband Doug; leading to a later storyline where Ste finds out that he caught HIV from this liaison.
** Charles, Margaret, and Nancy Hayton were originally to have been named John, Andrea, and Zoe. Their original names appeared on Becca's profile on the show's official site, as she was introduced before the rest of the family. Several other characters have had their names changed between the casting and their appearance onscreen: e.g. Grace Black was originally named "Kate" in casting sides, and Lisa Loveday was named as "Lauren."
** It was announced in early 2015 that Danniella Westbrook would reprise her role as Trudy Ryan for a storyline later in the year; but later confirmed that Westbrook had dropped out before filming. A Trudy {{Expy}} called Ashley was used instead.
** One idea reported to have been considered was that Phoebe [=McQueen=] would trace her biological father, who would fall in love with Myra. It never got past the story conference stage.
** At one point, Amy Barnes was going to die in the Dog In The Pond fire. Her actress announced her exit and a death scene for Amy was filmed; but the character got a reprieve and survived, remaining on the show for another two years.
** When Lindsey Butterfield was revealed as the "Gloved Hand Killer", executive producer Bryan Kirkwood claimed in an interview that they considered making Tegan Lomax the killer and had discussions about this before deciding to go with Lindsey.
** Phoebe [=McQueen=] was to have died in the "End of the Line" storyline, when Sonny Valentine knocks her out and stashes her in a bathroom to prevent her from telling anyone she saw him; she was to have been trapped and killed during the explosion on the train. Instead, she was found and rescued in time, and lasted until summer the following year when she was murdered by Lindsey.
** Scenes relating to Cindy Cunningham's flirtation with her daughter's boyfriend Jason were previewed in the press and TV guides (including a scene where she tries to give him a massage), but never aired.
** A planned storyline would have involved Kathy Barnes returning to the village, being homophobic towards Ste, and then being murdered by Ste's daughter Leah (Kathy's granddaughter.) However, Kathy's actress was too busy to return so this was scrapped. It's possible this was re-worked into a later plot where Nico Blake murders her grandfather Patrick.
* The TV special ''Julie Andrews: One Step Into Spring'' was to get a DVD release by Legend Film Group by April 2013, but it was cancelled for whatever reason. It was initially thought to be postponed to March 2014 to tie in with ''Film/MuppetsMostWanted'' (Franchise/TheMuppets were costarring in the special), however, no reason has been given for this sudden cancellation.
* In a Creator/DisneyChannel example, there was originally to be a duet in the first ''Film/HighSchoolMusical'' that was basically a song fight between Ms. Drabus and Coach Bolton. Ms. Darbus was played by Alyson Reed, a former Broadway actress, and this cut meant that she didn't get to sing a note in any of the three movies.
* ''Series/SpartacusBloodAndSand'': It's now really difficult to watch the first season without wondering what the rest of the series would have been like if leading man Andy Whitfield hadn't died of non-Hodgkins lymphoma in September 2011. His performance in Season 1 is also so commanding and sympathetic that you have to wonder how his career would have turned out had he lived. Liam [=McIntyre=] did a fantastic job stepping in as Spartacus, especially considering the circumstances, but AuthorExistenceFailure is never fun.
* ''Series/TheOfficeUS'' has had several actors audition for parts, including Creator/SethRogen as Dwight, [[Series/ModernFamily Eric Stonestreet]] as Kevin and Creator/JohnCho as Jim. It's also worth noting that two actors who ended up on the QuietlyPerformingSisterShow ''Series/ParksAndRecreation'', Adam Scott and Kathryn Hahn, also auditioned.
* When Adam Goldberg created ''Series/TheGoldbergs'' based on his early life, executives told him the show would probably be funnier if his younger self had a brother and sister instead of two brothers like in real life. So, Adam's real life brother Eric became his sister Erica. Although you have to wonder what if they hadn't said anything or Adam chose to GenderFlip Barry instead.
* In 2007, NBC ordered a pilot for an American version of ''Series/TheITCrowd'' which failed to get picked up. While unsold pilots are commonplace, the American ''IT Crowd'' would have featured Joel [=McHale=] in the cast. If the show had gotten picked up and renewed through the 2009-2010 season, who would have played Jeff Winger on ''Series/{{Community}}''?
* When ''Series/{{Nashville}}'' was being set up, the original idea was for Juliette Barnes to be much more of TheRival to Rayna Jaymes, to the extent of her being the BigBad of the series. But after Creator/HaydenPanettiere was cast, the producers liked her sympathetic reading of Juliette so much that she was changed from being an antagonist to being joint lead with Creator/ConnieBritton.
* ''Series/{{Hannibal}}'':
** Creator/DavidTennant tried out for the part of Lecter. He didn't get it (obviously), but Creator/BryanFuller was so impressed by his audition that he expressed the desire to write him a part as a psychopathic serial killer later in the series.
** Apparently, Fuller initially considered Creator/LeePace as Will Graham ([[PushingDaisies The Pie Maker]] as a profiler?) and as Mason Verger, but there's the possibility Pace still might appear in future...
** Bryan Fuller originally wrote Dr. Du Maurier as an older woman and hoped to cast Angela Lansbury. When scheduling conflicts made this impossible, NBC recommended Gillian Anderson. This modified the storyline slightly; instead of being retired due to age, she left her practice for [[DarkSecret other reasons.]]
** Fuller has stated multiple times (and has extended an offer) that he'd like the incomparable DavidBowie to play Hannibal's artist uncle Robert, the only stable parental figure in Hannibal's life after his parents were slain by Nazis. It would have been terrific to see Bowie interacting with Mikkelsen, for sure. Unfortunately, this was made impossible both by the show's cancellation in 2015 and [[AuthorExistenceFailure Bowie's death in January 2016.]]
*** Fuller has mentioned that, assuming everything lined up properly, Chi [=McBride=] would be his top choice for the role of [[AlmightyJanitor Barney]] [[HypercompetentSidekick Matthews]]. He has expressed interest in working with a number of actors with whom he has past experience, specifically naming [[Series/PushingDaisies Anna Friel]] and Kristin Chenoweth. Fuller wanted Friel to appear in Season 2 (likely as Margot Verger), but she had already signed onto an adaptation of ''The Odyssey'' at the time.
** Caroline Dhavernas was offered her choice of Freddie Lounds or Alana Bloom.
** Tobias Budge was originally intended to be Jame Gumb, a.k.a [[Literature/TheSilenceOfTheLambs Buffalo Bill]] (much as Franklin was supposed to be Benjamin Raspail), but when they couldn't get the rights to the character, they decided to rework him into somebody completely original.
** Fuller originally intended [[spoiler:Beverly Katz]] to die at the end of Season One instead of [[spoiler:Abigail Hobbs]], but was so impressed by her actress that he changed the script and story to give her more time for CharacterDevelopment.
** The role of Peter Bernadone was originally offered to Creator/PattonOswalt.
** A relatively minor example, but occasionally minor bits of the script that are missing from the final cuts of the episodes show up in the closed captions.
** After being impressed with her performance in ''Film/TheWolverine'', Fuller cast Tao Okamoto as Lady Murasaki from the novels. He changed the character to Chiyoh after becoming worried that Tao was too young to believable as Mads Mikkelsen's aunt. According to Fuller, this worked out for the best, since bringing Hannibal's childhood friend into the plot opened up new storytelling avenues the writers hadn't previously considered.
** Fuller asked Creator/JodieFoster to direct an episode of Season 4.
** Fuller actually wanted Zachary Quinto to play another character, but due to Quinto's schedule and desire to work with Gillian Anderson, the role of Bedelia's patient was written for him instead.
* Creator/{{Disney}} at one point was very close to taking control of Creator/{{NBC}} from General Electric, as part of Disney's massive expansion plan spearheaded by then-Disney-chairman Michael Eisner. However, Eisner's ego got the best of him and demanded total control of the network, and General Electric objected to giving up its stake in the network. Thus, the deal was scrapped and Disney took over Creator/{{ABC}} instead (probably helped by Eisner's relationship with that network during much of the 1970s).
* ''LiveActionTV/AllInTheFamily'':
** The role of Archie was originally offered to Mickey Rooney, who turned it down because he thought the show wouldn't last a season. Caroll O'Connor accepted the role, but didn't think much more of the show's chances.
** Penny Marshall and Sally Struthers both read for the role of Gloria. Everyone, including Struthers, thought the role would go to Marshall, who did the stronger readings (She was also [[Creator/RobReiner Rob "Meathead" Reiner's]] girlfriend at the time). Creator/NormanLear chose Struthers because he wanted Gloria to be a "daddy's girl" and Struthers closer resemblance to Carol O'Connor emphasized that better than Marshall (who looked more like Jean Stapleton, Edith's actress).
* ''[[Theatre/TheWiz The Wiz Live!]]'':
** The producers originally intended to adapt ''The Wiz'' as a ''[[Series/WaltDisneyPresents The Wonderful World of Disney]]'' TV special, starring Anika Noni Rose as Dorothy Gale. However, rights issues with Creator/{{Universal}}, the studio that distributed the 1978 movie of ''Film/TheWiz'', caused the project to fall through. The producers eventually obtained the rights to have the musical performed on Creator/{{NBC}}, except Noni Rose had become too old to play Dorothy by then. A talent search for a new lead resulted in then-19-year old Shanice Williams landing the role.
** NBC approached Music/{{Beyonce}} to play Glinda, the Good Witch of the South, but she turned the offer down. The part ended up going to Uzo Aduba instead.
** Aduba's Glinda originally sported blonde curly hair, as shown in early promo pictures and videos. By the time the special aired, she boasted brunette braids instead. According to Shanice Williams, the crew decided that letting Aduba show off her natural hair color would provide a stronger expression of African-American beauty.
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