It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia: Before Dennis? There Was Dr. Cooper

Fans of FXX/FX on Hulu's It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia find themselves in a very unique position. On one hand, there's the excitement that comes with knowing that Dennis (Glenn Howerton), Dee (Kaitlin Olson), Mac (Rob McElhenney), Charlie (Charlie Day), and Frank (Danny DeVito) will be keeping the doors of Paddy's open for four more seasons- taking the series to its 18th season and the title of longest-running, live-action sitcom in television history. While that brings a whole lot of stress relief regarding the show's long-term future (now let's talk an Artemis spinoff), it also has fans more anxious as ever for any news on the 15th season. But because The Gang cannot live by Paddy's alone (shocking, I know), today's update looks more at the past than the future. In this case, Howerton's acting past. Checking in with PeopleTV's Lola Ogunnaike for Couch Surfing to promote his new film Archenemy, Howerton had an opportunity to comment on some of the roles on his resume- including his brief run on NBC's ER. Just to be clear, we were huge ER fans but this totally slipped our brains- and now like Celine Dion? It's all coming back to us now.

It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia star Glenn Howerton remembers his ER run. (Image; NBC screencap)
It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia star Glenn Howerton remembers his ER run. (Image; NBC screencap)

Howerton played 2nd Year Resident Dr. Nick "Coop" Cooper on the long-running medical drama, appearing in six episodes of the series' 10th season. He was friends with Dr. Archie Morris (Scott Grimes) and had a particularly nasty run-in with Dr. Romano (Paul McCrane). In the clip below, Howerton discusses what it was like being a part of the series and jokes about how he was sure his six-episode run would lead to series regular stardom. And to find out why Day is to "blame" for Dennis' outburst on Always Sunny, why Larry David may be the one Always Sunny fans should thank for the series never leaving our screens, and Howerton's thoughts on starring in The Mindy Project, Fargo, A.P. Bio, and more, check out the full episode here.

So what's the good word when it comes to production on the record-setting return of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia? Bleeding Cool had the opportunity to ask Howerton that very question during our one-on-one discussion on the return of A.P. Bio for a third season. In the clip below, Howerton explains that the combination of pandemic-related delays and other projects that the cast is committed to (for example, McElhenney's Mythic Quest, Olson's Flipped, as well as other television and film projects- both behind and in front of the camera) has made it difficult to finalize a production ("at this point, it's more of a timing thing"). Though they may still be in the process of "trying to figure it out," Howerton expressed how excited and committed they are to a strong 15th run (and "maybe even a sixteenth").

In April, McElhenney revealed that writing was underway, though production timelines were in flux due to production shutdowns caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. McElhenney was hopeful that they'll be able to "jump right into something new with 'Sunny'" soon. And he also made one thing clear: as long as the fans want it (and FX Networks wants to keep paying for it) then Paddy's will be keeping its doors open for some time to come:

"How many years do I have on this planet? I'll do it forever. If people keep watching it and we keep having fun, why would we ever stop? It's my dream job. I never understand why people leave shows. I don't. I never understand that. The show is what I dreamed of doing my entire life. I don't take it for granted. And if they keep paying me and the audience keeps watching it and I still love it… why would I ever stop?"

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About Ray Flook

Serving as Television Editor since 2018, Ray began five years earlier as a contributing writer/photographer before being brought onto the core BC team in 2017.
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