Seinfeld revolves around a neurotic stand up comedian and his equally dysfunctional friends. Despite having the thinnest premise possible, the show became a juggernaut in comedy, spawning nine seasons, winning Golden Globes and Emmys, and generating billions of dollars.
Even though Seinfeld has been off the air since 1998, its influence is felt in other comedies as well as every day life. Two decades later, people still find the characters relatable, the dialogue quotable, and the comedy timeless.
As entertaining as the show is, the behind-the-scene antics are just as fascinating. Although it looks like everyone involved was having fun, episodes were cancelled or banned, lead actors and writers threatened to quit, and the show lead to multiple court cases and law suits.
If you consider yourself a Seinfeld fanatic, there's still probably a few things you didn't know. Did you know the show wasn't originally picked up by the studio? Are you aware that the head writer, Larry David, plays at least 15 different characters? Did you know Seinfeld was never pitched as "a show about nothing?"
Here are 20 mind-blowing facts about Seinfeld.
20. The Pilot Episode Was Very Different
A television pilot is a stand-alone episode to sell a potential series to a network. Because the writers and the studio may have very different ideas on how a show could work, the pilot is perceived more like a blueprint since it may have drastic differences from the series if it's picked up.
For the Seinfeld pilot, the show was actually called The Seinfeld Chronicles and focused more on how the titular character used his experiences and friends for his comedy sketches. Another difference is how Seinfeld's wacky neighbour, Kramer, is called Kessler.
However, the biggest difference between the pilot and the show is the complete absence of the character, Elaine Benes. The studio said there was no way the show would be green-lit unless it included a main female character. Julia Louis-Dreyfus was cast as Elaine in the very next episode.
This first episode is so different from the rest of Seinfeld, it is not considered canonical. When the show was picked up, the pilot didn't air again for years. The first episode became so obscure, Louis-Dreyfus didn't know it existed until 2004!