I have been loving writer/producer Earl Pomerantz's brilliant and hilarious blog posts about the development of his sitcom MAJOR DAD. Here's an anecdote he shared about working on the pilot with then-CBS President Kim LeMasters:
Here’s something somebody told me I said once about how TV networks behave: “The first thing they say is the last thing they say.” What did I mean by that? I meant this.
During the “casting approval” process, the president of CBS, Kim (a man) had strongly objected to the casting of Shanna Reed as our leading lady. Universal insisted. We got Shanna Reed.
It is now the night before the filming. What is Kim’s primary “note”, besides that the show doesn’t “ring true” to the spirit of the Marine Corps?
“I can’t tell you what to do,” he began, before telling us what to do, “but if I were you, I would close down production and look for another leading lady.”