Trivia: Supermarket Sweep

  • Hey, It's That Guy!: In addition to Supermarket Sweep, Al Howard is also best known as creator and executive producer of Sale Of The Century.
  • Hey, It's That Voice!: Everybody.
    • Wally King was one of many who guested on the American version of That Was The Week That Was (1964). He later narrated the documentary Blue Water, White Death (1971), then moved to the United Kingdom and spent some time (1981-84) as floor manager on a few shows.
    • Richard Hayes hosted ABC's Baby Game (1968), a 26-week revival of Name That Tune (1970-71), and All About Faces (1971-72).
    • Johnny Olson and Gene Wood were longtime announcers for various Mark Goodson productions. Incidentally, producer Jerome Schnur also previously worked for Goodson as a director on Beat the Clock and The Names The Same, as did director Lloyd Gross (who worked as a director on Clock, To Tell the Truth, Whats My Line, and Ive Got A Secret).
    • Johnny Gilbert has held the position of Jeopardy announcer since 1984 and announced on the ABC version of The Price Is Right from 1963-65. Incidentally, creator and executive producer Al Howard previously worked for ABC himself as an account executive and advertising copywriter.
    • Randy West has worked as announcer on a variety of games, and in more recent years wrote a biography of Johnny Olson.
  • Keep Circulating the Tapes:
    • Only seven ABC episodes are known to exist, all viewable at the Museum of Broadcast Communications in Chicago. One full episode (March 28, 1967) and two minutes from another (1966) are known to circulate.
    • The Lifetime/PAX version hasn't been seen since 2004, although finding episodes really isn't a problem unless you're looking for 1990-91 shows (which are pretty scarce).
  • Money, Dear Boy: The whole reason why Talent Associates agreed to produce the original Supermarket Sweep in the first place. At the time, the company was losing money off another program of theirs, Get Smart, largely due to production issues involving the show's star, Don Adams. Among other things, Adams insisted on doing his own stunts, and while it may have looked amazing on camera, Adams would frequently get injured in the process. As a result, according to Jay Sandrich, who was the producer of Get Smart during the first season, production would often be delayed as Adams would be recuperating from his injuries. Also, Adams was also a compulsive gambler, and whenever he would rack up debts, he would always have to take time off to do side work such as performing stand up comedy just to replenish his finances.
  • Old Shame: Subverted; while virtually no clips of the ABC era were seen on the Lifetime/PAX run, the rights to the ABC footage are not held by Al Howard Productions...but by HBO through their ownership of the Talent Associates library. Yes, the cable channel that brought us The Sopranos owns the original Supermarket Sweep.
  • Producer Backlash: Despite the fact that the ABC version saved the production company, Talent Associates, from bankruptcy, company founder and president David Susskind was quick to note that he had nothing to do with the show. When Al Howard, his agent from Ashley-Famous, Sy Fischer, and Jerome Schnur were pitching the concept to Ed Vane, ABC's vice president of daytime programming, Susskind was absent. ABC president Thomas W. Moore, on the other hand, liked the show from the beginning when test showings were done in theaters indeed, he had something to say when he first hired Vane at ABC:
    Moore: Now, remember, boy, in daytime we ain't improving the breed. Don't you bother your little head about quality or Peabody Awards. Just go get the money, kid.
  • Uncanceled: PAX revived the show on April 3, 2000 following nearly four solid years of repeats (Lifetime from 1995-98, PAX from 1999-2000). The show ran three more years in first-run, followed by another year of repeats before being removed entirely on March 26, 2004.
  • Word of God: According to Randy West, the cheeses were real, and staff got to take some home at the end of each season.