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Classic Sitcom: “The Nanny”

Classic Sitcom: “The Nanny”

To celebrate all this wave of a revival of the 90s, how about remembering one of the most iconic sitcoms of that decade? Let’s embark on this journey to the past right now recalling “The Nanny”:

The American sitcom “The Nanny”, produced by CBS, in the 90s, was a smash hit that was born by chance, due to the boldness of actress Fran Drescher, who when on a flight to London, with her husband at the time, Peter Marc Jacobson, crossed paths with Jeff Sagansky, then president of CBS Entertainment. She managed to set up a meeting to pitch a sitcom project she had created. In fact, she had no project developed at that time. From that moment on, she desperately started looking for an idea to show to the CBS board.

When introducing the project to Sagansky, Drescher and Peter used the plot of the film “The Sound of Music” as inspiration but, instead of a Julie Andrews, the audience would have Fran Fine, a Jewish from Queens, in New York, who makes tricks to appear she does well in her life. Sagansky liked the project and commissioned a pilot, nominating producers Prudence Fraser and both of “Who’s the Boss?” to help with the script. The four wrote the pilot and developed the characters. But the most important thing, which made the series have a special touch, was to shape Fran around Drescher’s personality, memories and family relationships.

The series portrays the story of Fran Fine, played by Fran Drescher, who accidentally becomes a nanny. In the real world, in order to hire a nanny, the essential thing is to ask for references and evaluate resumes. But that was not the case with the fictional character Fran Fine. With her characteristic nasal voice and flamboyant style, Fran had only to knock on Maxwell Sheffield’s door to soon assume the position of nanny when she was trying to sell cosmetics. It was all a mess, as Maxwell mistook her for the nanny he had hired. Despite this, Fran was hired. From there, a love relationship and fights between Maxwell and the new nanny begin. This plot led the series during its six seasons, which has won thousands of fans around the world.

The series had 143 episodes and was shown in many countries such as Argentina, Brazil and Spain reaching a good audience. Like any classic sitcoms of the 90s, “The nanny” contained supporting roles who were as successful as the protagonist, for example, the butler with a British accent Niles (played by actor Daniel Davis), who has the function of keeping the house clean, but who always gives a hint in situations that occur at the residence. Fran and Niles become great friends and partners. With acid humour and sarcastic jokes, Niles won over a legion of fans.

In addition to the regular cast, “The nanny” featured special appearances, such as Sylvia Rosenberg Fine (Renée Taylor), who lived Fran’s mother, always wanting her daughter to marry Maxwell soon, and grandmother Yetta Rosenberg Jones (Ann Morgan Guilbert), who, due to age, believed that the nanny and the boss had already married and raised three children. Apart from them, there were still television stars, who were eventually there, such as Jay Leno, Ray Charles, Elton John, Whoopi Goldberg, Erik Estrada and Elizabeth Taylor.

The series was recorded until June 23, 1999. There are some reasons for the end of the series. The series proposal began to run out in the fourth season, which prompted the CBS network to ask Max and Fran to get married in an attempt to regain the audience. The trick did not work, prompting “The Nanny” to register about 9.3 million viewers live in its sixth season, the sitcom’s lowest audience since its debut. After six seasons, the children were well grown and also, Fran Drescher discovered that she had cancer.

Have you seen this series? What was the series best moment in your opinion? Share it with us!

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I am a script and creative writer, journalist, producer, and marketing content developer with over 9 years of experience in Media (TV / Film Production), Communication, Journalism and Marketing. I worked for companies such as MTV, Animal Planet, Band, Discovery and, Fremantle Media. I am from Brazil, but I've been living in Dublin, Ireland, since 2017. I am also maniac for entertainment and pop culture.
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