Trivia / Charlie's Angels


For the original TV series:

  • Absentee Actor: Charlie may not be seen (except for the Series Finale), but "Avenging Angel" is the only episode in which he also isn't heard.
  • Actor Allusion: John Bosley's name is a reference to the fact that his actor David Doyle was often mistaken for actor Tom Bosley.
  • Big Name Fan: Ayn Rand was a great fan of the show, considering the idea of beautiful women doing impossible things to be a welcome divergence from its contemporaries.
  • The Cast Showoff: Before joining the series, Cheryl Ladd was already known as a singer (she was one of the singing voices in Josie and the Pussycats and recorded an album with the group), and she used her fame on Charlie's Angels to launch a solo singing career that actually scored a few hits in the late 1970s. Not surprisingly, the series built an episode titled "Angels in the Wings" around Kris performing in a musical, allowing Ladd to sing several tunes.
  • Money, Dear Boy:
    • In an "Emmy TV Legends" interview 'John Forsythe' called the show a "potboiler"; (a bad show), of deliberately poor quality, made quickly on the cheap solely to make a lot of money, which it did. Money is also the reason he was never seen on-screen, claiming he'd have needed to be paid a lot to do so.
    • Jaclyn Smith was eventually given a raise from $5000 an episode to $40,000 to prevent her from leaving the show.
  • The Other Marty: The original Charlie was fired due to his drinking problems. John Forsythe was asked to do the voiceover on the midnight of the Friday before the pilot was to be broadcast. He recorded the first voiceover in his pyjamas.
  • Throw It In: Kate Jackson suggested the name 'Charlie's Angels' after seeing a poster of angels in Aaron Spelling's office.
  • Unintentional Period Piece:
    • The fact that the series often takes place in fashionable or then-modern settings makes it positively scream 1970's today.
    • The series features lots of 70's fashions, designs, hairstyles and sets that may seem either cool or cheesy today.
    • Several episodes also display the rampant discrimination against women that was still common in the era (usually in a lampshading manner as the Angels soon prove how outdated those viewpoints are).
    • It's perhaps telling that the series didn't survive very long into the 1980s.
  • Wag the Director: A lot of writers were fired from the show because the stars were always demanding better scripts.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • Reportedly it was Ayn Rand's favorite show and Farrah Fawcett was her top choice for the role of Dagny Taggart if Atlas Shrugged was ever turned into a movie.note 
    • Producers originally wanted to have a Blonde, Brunette, Redhead trio as the Angels, but they abandoned this in order to have Jaclyn Smith as the third Angel. They finally got their redhead when Tanya Roberts joined in Season 5.
    • Kate Jackson originally signed on to play Kelly, being the first name the showrunners had in mind. However, when she warmed up to the role of the rather brainy Sabrina, the producers cast Jaclyn Smith as Kelly instead. This is why the pilot episode mainly focuses on Kelly.
    • At the end of the fifth season, Jaclyn Smith’s five year contract was up, and she had made it clear she was not going to return. Interestingly enough, her character apparently was going to be killed off. But when the show was cancelled instead of renewed, it was decided that Kelly should remain alive for the sake of syndication. Had there been a sixth season, Kelly would have died.
    • Kim Basinger, who appears in the episode "Angels in Chains" as an inmate, was later offered the role of Kris Munroe and turned it down because she wanted to do film.
    • Among the actresses considered for the role of Tiffany Welles were Michelle Pfeiffer and Kathie Lee Gifford.
    • Kate Jackson was cast as Joanna in Kramer vs. Kramer but filming would overlap with Charlie's Angels. Despite attempts to work around Aaron Spelling's schedule, Kate had to drop out and Meryl Streep got the part instead.
  • Working Title: The series had two alternate titles: The Alley Cats and Harry's Angels.

For the 2000 Film series:

  • Actor Allusion:
    • When Dylan uses a flamethrower in Full Throttle, the song "Firestarter" plays, as a reference to Drew Barrymore's role in the film Firestarter.
    • In the first film, the house in which the two kids are playing a videogame when a naked Dylan comes knocking is the same house from E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial.
    • Dylan can also be seen wearing a Harry Potter themed disguise at the start of the first film. Drew Barrymore is a massive fan of the series.
    • Jason (played by Matt LeBlanc) is an actor and a bit of a ditz. Sound familiar?
    • Bruce Willis plays the first federal agent Madison Lee (Demi Moore) kills. Guess that divorce wasn't as amicable as they made it seem...
    • In the sequel, Carrie Fisher plays a nun.
  • Actor-Inspired Element: Crispin Glover came up with many of his character's eccentric trades, such as ripping off women's hair, sniffing it and then screaming.
  • Dyeing for Your Art: The women trained with their martial arts master for three months, eight hours daily (except weekends).
  • Hostility on the Set: During the filming of the movie, there was apparently so much hostility between Bill Murray and Lucy Liu (he repeatedly called her acting skills into question) that she attacked him at one point, forcing the crew to separate them.
  • Irony as She Is Cast: Cameron Diaz is a trained ballroom dancer, and had to be told to dance terribly after the dream sequence.
  • Race Lift: In the original script, Vivian Wood was Chinese and her name was Vivian Wu. Once Lucy Liu was cast as Alex, they changed her to Caucasian.
  • Remake Cameo: Jacyln Smith appears in the sequel.
  • Role Reprisal: The Japanese dub deserves a special mention, as Charlie's Japanese voice actor (Tadashi Nakamura) reprise his role from the dub of the TV series in both films.
  • Romance on the Set: Drew Barrymore and Tom Green were dating at the time.
  • Troubled Production: Bill Murray and Lucy Liu had trouble getting along on a daily basis, often erupting into shouting matches (one argument even stopped production for a day). Beforehand the script was rewritten about thirty times until it was deemed "acceptable".
  • Wag the Director: Drew Barrymore insisted that the Angels be able to do all their fighting without firearms, hence why only the bad guys use guns.
  • What Could Have Been:

For the reboot TV series:

  • Fake American: Rachel Taylor as an American since she's an Australian.
  • The Pete Best or The Other Marty: Robert Wagner was set to be the voice of Charlie (replacing the late John Forsythe) but was prevented by scheduling conflicts; ultimately Victor Garber supplied Charlie's voice.

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