10 Things You Might Not Know About CHARMED (1998) - Warped Factor - Words in the Key of Geek.

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10 Things You Might Not Know About CHARMED (1998)

The power of three will set us free.

1. Debuting on October 7th 1998 and running for eight seasons from, Charmed came to be after the then-relatively new U.S. network The WB approached Spelling Television (which had produced the network's then-most successful series, 7th Heaven) to create a new drama series. Expanding on the popularity of recent supernatural-themed dramas such as The Craft, the production company explored different forms of mythology to find characters they could realise with contemporary storytelling.

The Craft, as you may know, follows a group of four girls who pursue witchcraft for their own gain but soon encounter negative repercussions. It was highly influential in the early development of Charmed, so much so that a version of The Smith's song How Soon Is Now performed by Love Spit's Love for the soundtrack of The Craft was used in Charmed as the theme tune across all eight seasons.

2. Shannen Doherty was the first actress to be cast as eldest Halliwell sister Prue. She recommended her best friend at the time Holly Marie Combs for the role of middle sister Piper. For the original 28-minute unbroadcast pilot episode, Lori Rom was cast as the youngest sister Phoebe Halliwell. However, after Charmed received a series order Rom quit, and a new pilot was filmed with former Who's the Boss? actress Alyssa Milano in the role of Phoebe.

3. Much time was spent developing the mythology of the show and attempting to be as realistic to the world of witchcraft and the occult as possible. So much so that Charmed emplyed their own demonologist, Robert Masello, as an executive story editor for the series. In his bio, Masello credits himself as the only demonologist hired for a television series...
"Charmed is the only show that has a licensed fully bonded demonologist, which is me, on staff and as a result because I've written books about demonology and the occult of witchcraft, I'm there to answer questions about how a demon would behave."

4. The Book Of Shadows was not just a mightily impressive prop it was the heavy one - weighing nine pounds and six ounces -  and the most valuable prop in the series.

5. Although Charmed was supposed to be set in San Francisco, the show was actually filmed in and around Los Angeles. All of the aerial shots and background shots that are shown, are stock footage of San Franciso. During the eighth and final season, when the production budget was cut, the entire year was shot only on the Paramount Studios lot as they could not afford to go out on location anymore

6. The house used for the exterior shots of Halliwell Manor is located at 1329 Carroll Avenue, Los Angeles, California. The picturesque neighborhood has served as the backdrop for countless motion pictures from the earliest days of cinema to the present, with the directly neighbouring houses used in the final scene of Michael Jackson's Thriller, and the main home in Adam Sandler's 2006 comedy Grandma's Boy.

7. Shannon Doherty already had something of a reputation as a "bad girl" thanks to her often reported on-set antics with fellow Beverly Hills 90210 cast members. This reputation gained further ground during her three seasons on Charmed, when tabloids fueled rumors of a feud with co-star Alyssa Milano. In both instances, Doherty departed the shows acrimoniously after a few seasons; on Charmed she was allegedly fired by producer Aaron Spelling after an ultimatum from Milano.

Doherty, for her part, has admitted to making mistakes, blaming her behavior on the pressures of fame, her youth, and problems in her personal life. In 2010, she stated:
"I have a rep. Did I earn it? Yeah, I did. But, after awhile you sort of try to shed that rep because you're kind of a different person. You've evolved and all of the bad things you've done in your life have brought you to a much better place."
She's gone on to say that although sed did fight on-set with Alyssa Milano it was due to them both growing up as child stars and both promised the lead role, causing a riff when it was switched around to reflect one another each season. But since then, tensions have cooled and they have become friends.

8. After Doherty left the series a potential recasting of the character was toyed with, being that the concept of three Halliwell sisters was so integral to the mythology of Charmed. Many actresses were considered, including Jennifer Love Hewitt, Sarah Brown, Tiffani Thiessen, Soleil Moon Frye, Susan Ward, and Eliza Dushku, before Rose McGowan was cast as a new character Paige Matthews, the long-lost, baby half-sister of Prue, Piper, and Phoebe.

9. Who do you think received the most fan mail from the Charmed cast? Alyssa Milano? Rose McGowen? How about Julian McMahon who played the demon Cole? None of the above. Surprisingly it was Finola Hughes who had a recurring role across all eight seasons as Patty Halliwell, the mother of Prue, Piper, Phoebe and Paige,.

10. As well as receiving a cult following, Charmed was a huge ratings success. The first episode, broadcast October 7th 1998 on The WB, "Something Wicca This Way Comes" garnered 7.7 million viewers, breaking the record for the network's highest-rated debut episode.

Charmed went through several timeslot changes during its eight-season run. For its first three seasons in the Wednesday/Thursday 9:00 pm timeslot, Charmed was the second-highest rated series on The WB, behind 7th Heaven. During its fifth season, the show moved to the Sunday 8:00 pm timeslot, where it became the highest-rated Sunday night program in The WB's history.

After broadcasting its last episode on May 21st 2006, Charmed had notched up an impressive 178 instalments. At the time this made it the second-longest drama broadcast by The WB, behind 7th Heaven, and the longest running hour-long U.S. television series featuring all female leads (a title it eventually lost to Desperate Housewives in 2012).

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