Ever noticed how Dorthy, as stylish as she was, always sported flat shoes? Well, the nearly 5-foot-10-inch actress once told an interviewer how when she was younger she dreamed of wearing heels, but that would have meant towering over most of her dates in high school, then later over the fellow actors she worked with.
But by the time “heightism” was no longer a huge concern hers, she discovered that she couldn’t even balance properly or walk in a pair of one-inch heels.
Is There a More Epic "Girls Night"?
We mentioned the Queen was a fan of the show but she wasn't the only royal to love the Golden Girls. The Princess of Wales, yes, Diana(!) and rockstar, Freddie Mercury, used to watch the show together.
According to the UK-based comedian, Cleo Rocos, she once spent an afternoon drinking champagne while watching reruns of the show with the pair with volume down and improvising lines with "a much naughtier storyline." Some would die to see any footage of that!
The Episode Based on Harris' Life
The two-part episode entitled “Sick and Tired” was autobiographical about the show's creator, Susan Harris. It was centered around her real-life struggle with chronic fatigue syndrome. Dorothy’s struggle finding a doctor who would take her symptoms seriously is still relevant for many women today.
In fact, a 2011 study showed that 62 percent of doctors referred men to cardiologists when they complained of chest pain and/or shortness of breath, while less than 30 percent did the same for their female patients. Instead, the doctors advised the women to “take it easy” and prescribed them anti-anxiety meds.
McClanahan Convinced Arthur to Pursue Her Part
It's said that Rue McClanahan gave her reluctant Maude co-star the final push, convincing her to give The Golden Girls a chance.
According to McClanahan herself, she phoned Bea Arthur and asked her incredulously, “Why are you going to turn down the best script that’s ever going to come across your desk as long as you live?”
NBC Didn't Want to Cast Bea Arthur
Initially, Susan Harris wrote the role of Dorothy with Arthur in mind, having worked with the amazing actress on several episodes of Maude. However the NBC president at the time, Brandon Tartikoff was against the idea, claiming that Arthur’s “Q” score (a rating system of a performer’s audience appeal) was low— meaning she was recognizable, but not exactly “loveable,” thanks to Maude’s rather liberal beliefs.
Interestingly, the broadway legend, Elaine Stritch, was a contender for the part, but she ruined her chances when she tried improvising her dialogue and then dropped the “F” bomb during her audition.