It’s been decades since the iconic sitcom “Cheers” bid farewell to its beloved patrons, and fans have often wondered what became of the talented cast that brought the Boston bar to life. From Sam Malone’s suave charisma and Diane Chambers’ witty banter to Norm Peterson’s unforgettable barstool presence, this article aims to catch up with the talented actors who made “Cheers” a household name and uncover what they’ve been up to since the show’s last call. So grab a cold one, sit back, and let’s dive into the lives of the cast members who made us feel like regulars at the Cheers bar.
Ted Danson (Sam Malone)
Career after ‘Cheers’
After the hit sitcom “Cheers” ended in 1993, Ted Danson continued to enjoy a successful career in both television and film. He immediately landed another lead role in the critically acclaimed series “Becker,” which followed the life of a grumpy, yet lovable, doctor. The show ran for six seasons and solidified Danson’s reputation as a versatile actor.
Danson also had success in the realm of comedy with his role as Larry David’s eccentric friend in the popular HBO series “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” His comedic timing and ability to bring memorable characters to life kept audiences entertained. In recent years, Danson has taken on more dramatic roles, including his Emmy-nominated performance in the crime drama “Fargo.”
Personal life and family
Ted Danson’s personal life has been just as dynamic as his professional career. He was married to actress Randy Danson for 16 years before their divorce in 1975. He then married producer Cassandra Coates in 1977, but they also divorced in 1993.
In 1995, Danson met actress Mary Steenburgen on the set of the film “Pontiac Moon,” and they were married the following year. The couple has been happily together ever since, supporting each other’s careers and engaging in numerous philanthropic endeavors.
Public image and philanthropy
Throughout his career, Ted Danson has been known not only for his acting talents but also for his commitment to social and environmental causes. He has been actively involved in ocean conservation as a board member for Oceana and frequently participates in various awareness campaigns. Danson’s dedication to preserving marine life earned him the prestigious Oceana SeaChange Award in 2011.
In addition to his environmental advocacy, Danson has also lent his support to organizations working to advance education, healthcare, and social justice. His philanthropic efforts have made a significant impact, proving that he not only played a beloved character on screen but also strives to make a positive difference off-screen.
Woody Harrelson (Woody Boyd)
Transition to film
Following his breakout role as Woody Boyd on “Cheers,” Woody Harrelson successfully transitioned from television to film. He quickly gained critical acclaim for his role as Mickey Knox in the controversial film “Natural Born Killers” in 1994. This intense role showcased Harrelson’s versatility and ability to tackle complex characters.
Throughout the years, Harrelson has appeared in a wide range of films, spanning various genres. Notable roles include his portrayal of Larry Flynt in “The People vs. Larry Flynt,” which earned him an Academy Award nomination, and his role as Haymitch Abernathy in “The Hunger Games” franchise.
Recent roles and awards
In recent years, Woody Harrelson has continued to impress audiences with his performances on the big screen. He starred in the critically acclaimed film “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” for which he received an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor.
Harrelson also delivered a memorable performance alongside Matthew McConaughey in the first season of HBO’s anthology crime series “True Detective.” The role showcased his ability to bring depth and complexity to characters in the television format.
Personal interests and activism
Outside of his acting career, Woody Harrelson is known for his dedication to environmental and social causes. He is an outspoken advocate for the legalization of marijuana and has been involved in various campaigns and initiatives promoting its medicinal benefits and decriminalization.
Harrelson is also passionate about environmental sustainability and has taken action to reduce his carbon footprint. He is a strong supporter of organic farming and actively practices sustainable living.
Kirstie Alley (Rebecca Howe)
Continued TV roles
Following her time on “Cheers,” Kirstie Alley successfully transitioned to other television projects. She starred in the sitcom “Veronica’s Closet,” playing the role of a successful lingerie company owner. The show ran for three seasons and showcased Alley’s comedic talent.
In recent years, Alley has made notable appearances on reality TV shows. She participated in the popular dance competition series “Dancing with the Stars,” where she impressed audiences with her graceful dance routines. Her return to the small screen has allowed her to showcase her versatility as an actress.
Weight loss and health journey
One aspect of Kirstie Alley’s life that has been widely discussed is her journey to lose weight and maintain a healthy lifestyle. She became a spokesperson for Jenny Craig, a weight loss program, and documented her progress publicly. Alley’s openness about her struggles and her determination to improve her health have been an inspiration to many.
Controversies and personal life
Despite her successes, Kirstie Alley has faced controversies throughout her career. She has been open about her struggles with substance abuse, specifically with alcohol. Alley’s journey to sobriety has been commendable, and she has used her experiences to raise awareness about addiction and support others going through similar challenges.
In her personal life, Alley has been married twice and has two children. Although she has faced ups and downs, Alley continues to pursue her passions and make notable contributions to the entertainment industry.
Shelley Long (Diane Chambers)
Struggles post ‘Cheers’
Following her departure from “Cheers” in 1987, Shelley Long faced challenges in maintaining the same level of success. Despite her undeniable talent and comedic timing, she struggled to find roles that truly showcased her abilities. This period marked a difficult time for Long as she navigated the ups and downs of Hollywood.
Return to television and film
In recent years, Shelley Long has made a notable return to television and film. She appeared in the hit sitcom “Modern Family,” portraying the character of DeDe Pritchett, the ex-wife of Jay Pritchett. Her recurring role introduced her to a new generation of viewers and reminded audiences of her comedic talent.
Long has also appeared in films such as “The Christmas Ornament” and “The Wedding Chapel,” further solidifying her presence in the entertainment industry. Her ability to seamlessly transition between comedy and drama has allowed her to maintain a diverse and fulfilling career.
Personal life post-‘Cheers’
In her personal life, Shelley Long has focused on raising her family and maintaining a low-profile. She has two children and has prioritized her role as a mother. While her time away from the spotlight may have been challenging, Long has found fulfillment in her personal relationships and continues to appreciate the impact her role as Diane Chambers had on popular culture.
Rhea Perlman (Carla Tortelli)
Television and film roles post ‘Cheers’
Rhea Perlman, beloved for her portrayal of Carla Tortelli on “Cheers,” continued to find success in both television and film following the end of the show. She made numerous guest appearances on popular sitcoms such as “Friends” and “The Mindy Project,” showcasing her ability to bring humor and wit to various characters.
Perlman has also had a successful film career, with notable appearances in movies like “Matilda” and “Carla’s Song.” Her ability to transform into different roles has allowed her to remain relevant and respected in the industry.
Life outside of acting
Outside of her acting career, Rhea Perlman is a dedicated philanthropist. She has been actively involved in various charitable organizations, focusing on issues such as education and poverty alleviation. Perlman’s commitment to making a positive impact on society is evident in her continued efforts to support those in need.
Marriage to Danny DeVito and family
Rhea Perlman’s personal life has been closely intertwined with her professional life. She met fellow actor Danny DeVito during a play in the early 1970s, and the couple got married in 1982. Their on-screen chemistry was palpable, and their real-life love story only added to the charm of their characters on “Cheers.”
Although Perlman and DeVito separated briefly in 2012, they reconciled and continue to be a strong and loving couple. They have three children together and have managed to balance their successful careers with their commitment to their family.
John Ratzenberger (Cliff Clavin)
Becoming a voice actor
After his iconic role as the know-it-all mailman Cliff Clavin on “Cheers,” John Ratzenberger found success in a new avenue: voice acting. He became one of the most recognizable voices in animated films, particularly through his collaborations with Pixar Animation Studios. Ratzenberger has lent his voice to characters in films such as “Toy Story,” “Monsters, Inc.,” and “Cars.”
His distinctive voice and ability to infuse characters with humor and depth have made Ratzenberger a sought-after talent in the animation industry. His contributions to popular animated films have become a beloved part of his legacy.
Other ventures and interests
In addition to his voice acting career, John Ratzenberger has pursued various other ventures. He has been an entrepreneur, starting his own manufacturing company that produced custom-made wooden puzzles. Additionally, he has been involved in promoting American manufacturing and skilled labor as an advocate for the trades.
Ratzenberger’s passion for preserving skilled labor and promoting vocational education has earned him recognition and respect in both the entertainment and business industries.
Personal life and philanthropy
John Ratzenberger is known for being down-to-earth and friendly, much like his character on “Cheers.” He has been actively involved in philanthropic work, supporting organizations such as Honor Flight Network, which enables veterans to visit memorials dedicated to their service.
Ratzenberger’s commitment to giving back to the community and supporting causes he believes in is a testament to his genuine nature, both on and off the screen.
George Wendt (Norm Peterson)
Career post ‘Cheers’
George Wendt, who portrayed the lovable bar regular Norm Peterson on “Cheers,” continued to have a thriving career after the show’s conclusion. He made numerous appearances on television, guest-starring in popular sitcoms like “Frasier” and “Modern Family.” Wendt’s ability to deliver comedic performances with expert timing made him a sought-after talent in the industry.
Although his role as Norm Peterson remains one of his most recognizable, Wendt’s ability to adapt to different characters proves his versatility as an actor.
Return to theater
Aside from his television roles, George Wendt has had a successful career in the theater world. He has appeared in numerous stage productions, including performances of “Hairspray” and “Art.” Wendt’s love for live performances and his ability to connect with audiences have made him a respected figure in the theater community.
Wendt’s return to the stage allows him to continue honing his craft and explore different aspects of his acting abilities.
Family and personal life
George Wendt values his privacy and has kept his personal life out of the public eye. He has been married to Bernadette Birkett, a fellow actress, since 1978. The couple has two sons together, one of whom followed in his parents’ footsteps and pursued a career in acting.
Wendt’s commitment to his family and ability to balance his personal and professional life reflect his grounded nature and genuine demeanor.
Kelsey Grammer (Frasier Crane)
Success in ‘Frasier’
Kelsey Grammer’s portrayal of the psychiatrist Frasier Crane on “Cheers” made such a lasting impact that the character received his own spin-off series, aptly named “Frasier.” The show, which followed Frasier’s new life in Seattle as a radio host, became a critical and commercial success.
“Frasier” ran for 11 seasons and garnered numerous accolades, including 37 Emmy Awards. Grammer’s ability to bring depth, sophistication, and comedic timing to Frasier Crane solidified his place as one of television’s most beloved actors.
Other roles in television and film
In addition to his remarkable success on “Cheers” and “Frasier,” Kelsey Grammer has had an extensive career appearing in various television shows and films. Notable roles include his portrayal of Dr. Hank McCoy/Beast in the “X-Men” film series and his Emmy-winning performance as the villainous Mayor Tom Kane in the political drama series “Boss.”
Grammer’s ability to embody such a range of characters demonstrates his versatility as an actor, and his talent has continued to captivate audiences across different mediums.
Family and personal controversies
Kelsey Grammer’s personal life has experienced both joys and challenges. He has been married four times and has fathered seven children. Tragedy struck when his sister was brutally murdered in 1975, and later in life, he experienced the loss of his two half-brothers in separate incidents.
Grammer’s personal struggles, including battles with substance abuse and public divorces, have been widely publicized. However, despite these challenges, he has managed to maintain a successful career and find happiness in his personal life.
Bebe Neuwirth (Lilith Sternin)
Return to Broadway
After captivating audiences as the stern yet captivating Lilith Sternin on “Cheers,” Bebe Neuwirth returned to her roots in theater. She took on prominent roles in Broadway productions, including her critically acclaimed performance as Velma Kelly in the revival of “Chicago.” Neuwirth’s powerful voice and commanding stage presence made her a standout in the theater world.
Her return to Broadway allowed her to showcase her incredible talent and cemented her status as a respected figure in the theater community.
Roles in television
In addition to her success on Broadway, Bebe Neuwirth has continued to make appearances on television. She has had recurring roles in popular shows like “Blue Bloods” and “Madam Secretary,” where she captivated audiences with her charismatic performances.
Neuwirth’s versatility as an actress has allowed her to seamlessly transition between stage and screen, captivating audiences in both mediums.
Personal life and interests
Bebe Neuwirth’s personal life has been relatively private, but she has been open about her love for animals. She is an animal rights activist and has actively supported organizations that promote animal welfare. Her dedication to this cause reflects her compassionate nature and commitment to making a positive impact beyond the entertainment industry.
Nicholas Colasanto (Ernie ‘Coach’ Pantuso)
Death and legacy
Nicholas Colasanto, who portrayed the lovable Coach on “Cheers,” tragically passed away in 1985 at the age of 61 due to a heart-related condition. His sudden death left both the cast and fans devastated. Colasanto’s role as Coach remains iconic and his character’s innocence and endearing nature made him a fan favorite.
Although his time on “Cheers” was cut short, Nicholas Colasanto’s portrayal of Coach left an indelible mark on both the show and television history.
Posthumous awards and recognition
Following his untimely death, Nicholas Colasanto received posthumous recognition and awards for his work on “Cheers.” He was nominated posthumously for an Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series in 1985 and 1986. Colasanto’s talent and presence on-screen were so notable that his contributions continued to be acknowledged even after his passing.
His legacy continues to live on through his portrayal of Coach and the impact he made on the cast and fans of “Cheers.”
Tributes from ‘Cheers’ cast members
The cast of “Cheers” honored Nicholas Colasanto’s memory both on and off-screen. They fondly remembered him as a dear friend and a talented actor, highlighting his ability to bring joy and laughter to the set. In various interviews and reunions, the cast members have shared touching stories and anecdotes about their time working alongside Colasanto.
His influence on his co-stars is evident in their continued tributes and remembrances, solidifying his place in their hearts and in the history of “Cheers.”
In conclusion, the cast of “Cheers” has had a diverse range of careers and experiences after the show’s end. Each actor has continued to make their mark in the entertainment industry, whether through acclaimed performances, dedication to philanthropy, or personal triumphs and challenges. The legacy of “Cheers” lives on through the continued success and impact of its talented cast.