Good news? FXX's It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia is set to one-up ABC's The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet, with Mac (Rob McElhenney), Dennis (Glenn Howerton), Charlie (Charlie Day), Dee (Kaitlin Olson), and Frank (Danny DeVito) taking the title for the longest-running live-action comedy series.
Bad news? Always Sunny is one of hundreds of television and film productions that either has been or will be impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, as more and more people are urged to engage in social distancing and self-quarantine to kill the spread of the virus. Except not everyone's listening.
So New York State Governer Andrew Cuomo asked DeVito to take a break from Philly to do a little good for NYS – and for anyone, anywhere who needs a reminder of what they should be doing – in the most beautifully blunt, Frank-like way possible.
Check out the video for yourselves below – and trust the words of "Uncle Frank". He knows stuff. He's seen things.
— Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) March 22, 2020
As you probably know by now, FX Networks and Hulu entered into a new streaming deal known as FX on Hulu – and Always Sunny is just one of just a ton of others shows whose past catalog is available exclusively on the Disney-owned streaming service. So to mark the occasion, the fine folks at FX Networks offered new viewers and the viewing faithful a little treat: the sights and (mostly) sounds of Wolf Cola CEO Frank Reynolds.
Every scream. Every grunt. Every groan…
Last month, McElhenney appeared on CBS' The Late Show with Stephen Colbert to promote his new Apple TV+ series Mythic Quest: Raven's Banquet, we knew that some Always Sunny questions were inevitable. That said, we didn't know what went on behind the scenes that resulted in DeVito joining that series, starting with its second season – and we definitely didn't know that his hiring kept the series from being a "one-season wonder".
When the series premiered in 2005, it do so with the support of FX President John Landgraf and the network – but its freshman year run didn't result in a ton of eyeballs tuning in. Landgraf avised McElhenney to bring on someone of "name" who could help boost the show's presence from a marketing standpoint – suggesting DeVito as he had previously run the actor's prodcution company, Jersey Films.
For McElhenney, the idea of bringing a "movie star" of any name (nothing personal against DeVito) would prove counter to the chemistry the cast developed during its first season that made the series so unique:
"We said, 'No'. I said, 'No thank you. We don't want Danny DeVito'. I said, 'It's nothing personal against Danny DeVito. I grew up watching Danny. He's a legend and he's incredibly funny and we love him.' But we felt we had something really special and we really thought maybe bringing a movie star on would ruin the chemistry."
While McElhenney made a strong argument from the creative standpoint, it was Landgraf's response that proved to be the "killing blow" in this back-n-forth: he'll have to cancel the show.
Check out the story for yourself below (starting at 4:10, just in case), and see the exact moment McElhenney realized you can't worry about chemistry on a show – when you don't have a show…