One of the most-watched shows from the 1970s, All in the Family was no ordinary sitcom. Indeed, Norman Lear’s creation broke new ground by tackling themes previously seen as taboo for U.S. prime-time comedy. And it was just as interesting behind-the-scenes, too. So, here are 20 things you may not know about this all-time classic TV series.
20. Carroll O’Connor wasn’t the first choice to play Archie
Carroll O’Connor undoubtedly made the Archie role his own, but he wasn’t producers’ first choice. In fact, Mickey Rooney was originally offered the part but turned it down over fears about its chances of success and its controversial nature. Scott Brady also said no, but later played Joe Foley for four episodes, instead.
19. O’Connor wanted flight money before accepting the role
Based in Italy at the time, O’Connor also took some persuading to accept the role. The actor wanted reassurance his flight home would be paid for if All in the Family stalled at the pilot stage. But as we all now know, producers never needed to take out their wallets.