Danson: ... I maintain that I got Sam because I was teamed with Shelley. She was really unique. You can't imagine anyone else playing Diane. She was Diane.
This echoes what Danson says on the S1 or S2 DVD set. He acknowledges how lucky he was to be teamed with Shelley during the audition process, which is very generous -- and, IMO, true. It did
take him a few seasons to inhabit Sam in the same way that Shelley simply was
Diane from day 1.
Les Charles (co-creator): Shelley knew who her character was and had a much surer idea of herself than the rest of the cast. She was able to carry the show in the beginning while the others were finding their way.
Another nice acknowledgement. I wonder if he has any regrets about the character assassination they wrote for Diane in S5.
Rhea Perlman: ... I can't say I based [Carla] on anybody I knew.
Interesting, 'cause there were times I swore she was channeling her husband's performance as Louie on Taxi
Ken Levine (writer/producer): The final two episodes of the first season were shot in one night and build to that scene where Sam and Diane are fighting—"Are you as turned on as I am?" "More"—and they kiss. The audience went absolutely crazy nuts. I turned to David Isaacs and said, "We've peaked. There's nothing we can do with these two that is going to evoke that much of a reaction."
I can understand that fear, but boy, did they ever come roaring back with the opener of S2. "Be very careful what you say. It could be used against you in a court of law."