MURPHY BROWN Turns 25 With Return to TV!
November 14th marked the 25th anniversary of the classic 1990s sitcom Murphy Brown, which aired on the CBS television network for a record ten seasons. To celebrate, STARZ and ENCORE will start airing all 247 episodes uncut for the first time since they originally aired.
On December 11th, creator Diane English and the surviving original cast members reunited, not only for a special event sponsored by Starz at New York's Museum Of Modern Art, but to record a short segment for Katie Couric's daytime talk show, Katie, which aired the following day.
Almost every episode from Murphy Brown's run included music from the 1960s, most notably from the Motown catalogue and Murphy's favorite Atlantic artist, Aretha Franklin. Therefore, the show is not currently on DVD past the first season due to issues involving the music rights for its trademark openings.
The main cast members include theatre favorites Candice Bergen (The Best Man; Hurlyburly) as the eponymous Murphy Brown, Charles Kimbrough (Harvey; Company; Sunday In The Park with George) as Jim Dial and Grant Shaud (Relativity Speaking; EST Member) as Miles Silverberg, all of whom have appeared on Broadway in the last year.
Rounding out the great cast are TV veterans Faith Ford as Corky Sherwood and Joe Regalbuto as Frank Fontana. All were in attendance at both events. The late Robert Pastorelli (TV's South Pacific; West End: A Streetcar Named Desire) and Pat Corley (Of Mice & Men; Actors Studio Member) played Eldin Bernecky and Phil respectively. Lily Tomlin (The Search For Signs Of Intelligent Life in the Universe), who later replaced Shaud in the last two seasons as Kay Carter-Shepley, was not in attendance at either event.
Murphy Brown told the story of a forty-year-old female news magazine anchor (more of an oddity back then) returning to her life after a stint in rehab for cigarettes and alcohol. The network was at first uneasy about the premise, suggesting instead that Murphy be much younger and be returning home from a spa. The show went on to win eighteen Emmys and didn't shy away from hot button issues such as abortion, single motherhood, breast cancer and famously lampooned the Clarence Thomas Hearings.