First coming to TV screens in 1976, Charlie’s Angels has undoubtedly stood the test of time. Indeed, this genre-defining show about three feisty female detectives has become a cultural juggernaut, spawning two movie adaptations and a small screen reboot in 2011. Over the years, the individual Angels may have changed, but their ass-kicking appeal is still as strong as ever. And their on-set stories make this legendary franchise even more intriguing.
20. Jaclyn Smith (Kelly Garrett)
The only Angel to make it through the entirety of the original series, Jaclyn Smith was well-loved for her role as Kelly Garrett. So much so, in fact, that fans treated her like a rock star. “We had a private back-door entrance to anywhere we wanted,” she reminisced to People in 2016.
19. Kate Jackson (Sabrina Duncan)
Though idolized by fans for playing Angel Sabrina Duncan, Kate Jackson was not so admired by her producers. Indeed, the star’s defiant attitude eventually led to her dismissal “for the good of the show” in 1979. “I got tired of them and they got tired of me,” she told People at the time.
18. Tanya Roberts (Julie Rogers)
While she’s best known as Midge Pinciotti in That ’70s Show, Tanya Roberts also had a brief stint playing Julie Rogers in Charlie’s Angels’ final season. After the series ended success, Roberts later appeared as a Bond girl in 1985’s A View to a Kill.
17. Minka Kelly (Eve French)
Hot off the heels of a starring role in Friday Night Lights, Minka Kelly sought to capitalize on her success by playing Eve French in 2011’s Charlie’s Angels reboot. Unfortunately, the show tanked after just a few episodes. But with later roles in The Butler and Almost Human, Kelly’s career certainly survived.
16. Rachael Taylor (Abby Sampson)
Though she put in a fighting performance as Abby Sampson, Rachael Taylor was unable to salvage the Charlie’s Angels remake. Yet despite this setback, Taylor’s fortunes soon improved thanks to a starring role in Jessica Jones.
15. Ramon Rodriguez (John Bosley)
Growing up with three sisters, Ramon Rodriguez was grudgingly introduced to the influential ’70s show. “I want to watch Transformers or G.I. Joe… and I gotta watch Charlie’s Angels,” he jokingly told Jimmy Kimmel in 2011. This childhood torment paid off, however, when he landed the role of John Bosley in the 2011 reboot.
14. Cameron Diaz (Natalie Cook)
Although she gained a huge career boost from 2000’s Charlie’s Angels movie, Cameron Diaz was initially reluctant to come aboard as Natalie Cook. Producer Leonard Goldberg subsequently admitted to Entertainment Weekly in 2000 that the star’s agent declined the script “30 times.” Nevertheless, a $12 million paycheck eventually put Diaz’s doubts to rest.
13. Drew Barrymore (Dylan Sanders)
While she wasn’t the producers’ first choice to portray Dylan Sanders, Drew Barrymore enthusiastically pushed to appear in the 2000 film. Her love of the franchise is so great that she even executive produced 2011’s TV reboot and has publicly supported a third Charlie’s Angels movie in the press.
12. Lucy Liu (Alex Munday)
After the likes of Catherine Zeta-Jones and Ashley Judd apparently dropped out of the running, Lucy Liu secured the role-of-a-lifetime with Alex Munday from 2000’s Charlie’s Angels. Shooting conflicts with Ally McBeal left the actress exhausted on set, however. “They’d just prop me up and give me In-N-Out Burgers,” she told Entertainment Weekly in 2000.
11. Bill Murray (John Bosley)
Though he always seems laid back in public, Bill Murray was anything but on the set of 2000’s Charlie’s Angels. Indeed, the actor – who played John Bosley – reportedly informed co-star Lucy Liu that her acting was atrocious. He also clashed with director McG and even told The Times in 2009 that the filmmaker “deserves to die.”
10. Tim Curry (Roger Corwin)
Famed for his over-the-top villainous roles, Tim Curry was on high form playing the 2000 film adaptation’s baddie Roger Corwin. Sadly, the esteemed star has been absent from screens of late due to a debilitating stroke in 2012. He continues to battle through towards good health, however.
9. Sam Rockwell (Eric Knox)
He made a great antagonist in Eric Knox, but Sam Rockwell admitted that shooting 2000’s Charlie’s Angels was full of challenges. “We were scared,” he told the AV Club in 2008. “We didn’t know if it was going to turn out okay. I thought it did… but it was touch ’n’ go there for a while.”
8. Crispin Glover (The Thin Man)
Eccentric actor Crispin Glover is infamously hard to work with and his stint on Charlie’s Angels and its 2003 sequel was no different. After taking issue with his character the Thin Man’s dialogue, Glover insisted that he play the role mute. Surprisingly, the film’s put-upon producers relented.
7. Tom Green (Chad)
After playing Drew Barrymore’s boyfriend Chad in 2000’s film adaptation, comedian Tom Green found life imitating art. To wit, the two stars married in 2001, although their relationship collapsed the following year. Speaking on Oprah: Where Are They Now in 2014, Green described the union as a “crazy, whirlwind of a time.”
6. Luke Wilson (Peter Kominsky)
Besides starring alongside future-husband Tom Green, Drew Barrymore also hired ex-boyfriend Luke Wilson for 2000’s film adaptation. Perhaps to avoid awkwardness, however, Wilson was given the role of Cameron Diaz’s onscreen boyfriend Peter Kominsky – a role that perfectly suited his nice-guy persona.
5. Matt LeBlanc (Jason Gibbons)
Completing the roster of love interests in the 2000 film adaptation was Matt LeBlanc as Lucy Liu’s beau, Jason Gibbons. A few years later, Liu would star alongside LeBlanc again in a 2004 episode of Joey.
4. LL Cool J (Mr. Jones)
Despite only making a brief on-screen appearance as a disguised Drew Barrymore in Charlie’s Angels, LL Cool J still credits the 2000 film as a springboard for his acting career. “It was a pivotal moment,” he told Entertainment Tonight in 2012. “Charlie’s Angels definitely helped me through a few tough moments in life.”
3. Justin Theroux (Seamus O’Grady)
For his role as Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttler’s villain Seamus O’Grady, Justin Theroux affected an Irish accent. However, some viewers were unimpressed by the efforts of the future husband of Jennifer Aniston. For example, in 2013 Time writer Richard Conway called Theroux’s brogue “the worst sounds to come out of anyone’s mouth.”
2. John Cleese (Mr. Munday)
Though he made his name in the Monty Python comedy series and films, John Cleese slipped right into the fray of Full Throttle as Mr. Munday. “I think it’s just great fun in that slightly old fashioned way that kind of opens us all up,” he told Meet the Stars in 2003.
1. Shia LaBeouf (Max Petroni)
Before he was the Hollywood bad boy he is today, Shia LaBeouf was a fresh-faced teen playing Max Petroni in Full Throttle. But even as a 15-year-old he still got into trouble. Indeed, he admitted to Playboy in 2009 that he’d peep into Cameron Diaz and Lucy Liu’s trailers during filming.