Everyone knows and loves Full House. The series ran from 1987 all the way until 1995, spanning 8 seasons and a total of an impressive 192 episodes! But ratings weren’t exactly sky high when the series first premiered. You’ll be shocked when you find out exactly what producers thought to do about it! Read on to find out what the craziest pranks and the most inappropriate situations that happened on the set of Full House even though there were children present. What tricks and bribes did producers and the cast use to make sure the youngest actors on set behaved themselves? And what love connections were made on the set that led to two separate marriages?
Jodie Sweetin’s Hard Times
Jodie Sweetin’s had a few struggles in her life, to say the least. She was born to two parents who were both serving prison sentences at the time of her birth, and she was raised by her uncle.
After Full House ended, she battled substance addiction for a number of years, as well as being married and divorced three times. Her final marriage ended with her getting a restraining order against her ex-husband. We wish her all the best!
Candace Cameron Bure’s controversial comments have kept her more in the spotlight than her acting roles. As a host on The View, her conservative views (Candace, like her brother Kirk Cameron, is a born again Christian) caused her to butt heads with Joy Behar and Whoopi Goldberg.
Candace isn’t shy about expressing unpopular opinions, and while this trait has attracted some new fans, it has also deterred some old ones.
Mary-Kate & Ashley Who?
Despite the fact that their role as Michelle Tanner on Full House is the one that made Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen into household names, the twins definitely like to keep their distance from the series that made them famous.
After Full House, the twins grew a billion dollar empire from straight to video movies, merchandise, and eventually founding well respected fashion lines. They refuse, despite their fans’ begging, to ever appear in any Full House reunions or anniversary parties.
John Stamos wasn’t just an actor on the set of Full House – he was responsible for making some major creative decisions as well! He changed the name of his character, who was originally named by the writers “Uncle Adam” to “Uncle Jesse”, because he thought Uncle Jesse had a better ring to it.
He also changed the character’s last name, which was Cochran at first, to Katsopolis. This change was important to John because he was proud of his Greek heritage.
Early on in the series, the producers sent the series’ leading men – Bob Saget, John Stamos and Dave Coulier – on a trip to Las Vegas, hoping that an offscreen friendship would improve the onscreen chemistry between the men.
Since Dave and Bob were friends from the stand up comedy scene, the trip was intended to make John “one of the boys.” The trip worked a little too well – Dave and John became buddies, while Bob was the odd man out.
Mary Kate & Ashley Almost Left
Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen’s mother was hardly your typical Hollywood stage mom, who was more interested in bringing in the cash from her show pony children than worrying about their future.
In fact, Mary Kate and Ashley’s mom was the complete opposite and almost removed them from the show, due to her concerns about how an abnormal childhood spent in the limelight would affect their development as human beings. However, after a hefty salary raise, she kept them on the show.
You’ve probably never thought of the title of the show Full House as anything more than a very obvious description – the show is about three adult men and a gaggle of kids all living in one house together.
But the name of the show was a hidden meaning. It’s a reference to a poker hand where the three Tanner girls are considered “three of a kind,” while Jesse and Rebecca and their twins are considered to be “the pairs.”
Bob Saget Almost Quit
Despite Full House‘s success, Bob almost walked off the series because the storylines were “too cheesy” and he feared being associated with a “low quality” TV show.
However, as we all know, he stuck it out and has stayed the beloved Danny Tanner for years. However, the cheesy storylines and his cheesy character have put him in a box and now, anything Saget says that doesn’t align with his charcter is frowned upon.
Where Are The Twins?
Since their childhood stardom, which originated with their shared role as Michelle Tanner on Full House, the Olsen twins have made a conscious decision to stay as far as they can out of the spotlight.
Since turning 18, the girls have not done any acting whatsoever. Mary Kate is leading a quiet life married to Oliver Sarkozy, the brother of former French president Nicholas Sarkozy, and Ashley is living in New York, heading the twins’ well respected fashion label.
Two’s A Crowd?
Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen were cast to play just one character, Michelle Tanner, on Full House. But the older that the twins got, the more obvious it became that they were not actually identical.
Mary Kate had a freckle on her face that Ashley didn’t have, which made it clear to the obvious that two girls were playing Michelle. Producers wanted to fire Ashley and keep Mary Kate, but John Stamos interfered and the twins were kept on together.
A Different Danny?
It might be impossible for you to imagine anyone but the unforgettable Bob Saget playing Danny Tanner, but the fact is that the pilot episode of the show was actually filmed with a different actor in the role – John Posey!
Because audiences reacted so badly to John Posey’s performance, the pilot was never aired and it was re-filmed with Bob in the role. Who knows if the series would have been a hit if producers had kept John in the role?
Is The Cast Cursed?
John Stamos, Dave Coulier, and Bob Saget all have had way less than spectacular Hollywood careers and haven’t broken away from their roles on Full House.
They are still largely associated with the characters they played on the sitcom two decades ago. Jodie Sweetin, as we mentioned earlier, faced some major drama in her personal life as well as substance abuse issues, and even Mary Kate Olsen has been in and out of treatment for various health issues.
You might be surprised to learn exactly how much merchandise the Full House series spawned during the time when it was the hottest show on TV. The show sparked an electronic handheld game, in which the player acted as Michelle and had to dodge obstacles while scoring points from successful high fives.
There were also several paperback books released based on Michelle’s character, as well as trading cards, dolls, a board game, and an official line of Full House clothing.
In 2015, the Lifetime Television network, famous for its kitschy made for TV movies, presented “The Unauthorized Full House Story,” an alleged biopic about behind the scenes drama on the set of the show.
Ever the class act, Candace Cameron Bure simply tweeted, “Bad. So bad.” about the project, and refused to comment further. Interestingly enough, John Stamos tweeted appreciatively at the actor who portrayed him in the movie. Maybe he appreciated the fact that he was back in the spotlight?
Dave Coulier As Cupid?
It wasn’t only Candice Cameron Bure from the cast of Full House who played their hand at being a matchmaker. After the series ended, Dave Coulier was playing in a charity ice hockey game and invited Candace to come watch him.
She attended the match and she was introduced to Dave’s team mate, Russian – American NHL player Valeri Bure. The two immediately hit it off and ended up getting engaged some time later. They’re still married and have 4 kids!
Not In Front Of The Children!
In an interview, Dave Coulier recalled moment which might have made the parents of the child actors pretty uncomfortable. Dave, John, and Bob were filming a scene that was proving difficult.
After multiple failed takes, Dave suggested all the guys take their pants off in order to lighten the mood. They did, and it was major comic relief. “The crew’s dying, and the producers — everybody’s cracking up. About 30 seconds later…here comes Jodie Sweetin’s mom and Candace Cameron’s mom.” Yikes!
Bribes For Good Performances
You might have assumed that Jodie Sweetin and Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen were just super mature and talented for their ages, and you’d be right. The precocious actresses all proved to have major acting chops, but there were challenges that come with having kids on set.
Because of child labor laws, the girls were only allowed to work a few hours a day. To ensure that they got what they needed from them, Dave would bribe the girls with candy!
While the critics never really let up on Full House for its unrealistic plot lines and dialogue (a complaint that was actually shared by a few of the cast members!) the show was a big hit with audience and did, in fact, win awards.
John Stamos earned a TV Land Award for “Best Elvis Impersonation,” a number of Young Artists Awards, and the Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Award for Favorite Actress went to Candace Cameron Bure, which shows how much fans loved the show.
Whipped Cream Shenanigans
According to Bob Saget’s autobiography, “I grabbed Dave and John and we went into the prop room backstage and locked the door … I swung open the refrigerator, and behold! Six cans of whipped cream.
Reddi-wip. Nitrous oxide is dangerous. Can cause brain damage … Dave and John followed my lead and we inhaled the little bit of air still left in the cans that were meant for Michelle’s birthday cake scene. I guess we got high, don’t think so though.”
Everyone’s favorite couple from Full House was Aunt Becky and Uncle Jesse, played by Lori Loughlin and John Stamos. In real life, the couple dated briefly, then parted ways amicably.
John Stamos ended up marrying model and actress Rebecca Rojmin of X Men fame, and Lori Loughlin went on to marry an Italian fashion designer named Massimo. However, John never stopped pining for Lori and said in an interview that “she’s the one who got away.” Aww, nothing like puppy love.
Although the Olsen twins became America’s favorite pair of womb-mates, the show’s producers and network executives originally wanted to hide the fact that Michelle Tanner was being played by two separate little girls.
In the first few seasons, the twins were credited as one person named “Mary Kate Ashley Olsen” rather than Mary Kate Olsen and Ashley Olsen individually. The reason for this was that producers feared the audience would be distracted by the two girls’ slightly different mannerisms.
Saturday Night Live?
Dave Coulier did Full House because he was dropped from SNL. In an interview, he explained, “I told everyone that I was going to New York to be on SNL and then Brandon Tartikoff decided that Dana Carvey and I were too similar.
I had to call everyone back and tell them ‘Never mind.’ Six months later, I read a pilot titled Full House. I would have never been on Full House had I gone to New York to be on SNL.”
The Cast Was Unusually Loyal
Show business is a notoriously fickle industry, and actors are not exactly known for their loyalty. They’re usually quick to jump ship when on a failing series, and sometimes even leave a show that’s doing well in search of greener pastures.
Full House has the distinction of being one of the rare long running series where the entire original cast remained from the pilot all the way until the series finale episode. Talk about a loyal crew!
Jeff Franklin, the executive producer and creative visionary behind Full House, ended up leaving the series in 1992 to pursue another project – an unsuccessful series called Hangin’ With Mr. Cooper – and boy, Jeff sure wishes he had a time machine.
Jeff has said in multiple interviews that he considers leaving Full House “honestly the biggest regret of my life.” One of his main reasons is that he disagreed with the direction the show took in his absence.
Jeff Franklin, who we mentioned earlier, has been very vocal about exactly what changes that happened on Full House after he left the show he didn’t approve of.
Specifically, he hated that the writers broke up D.J. and Steve. “They had such a wonderful relationship, and I know the audience really enjoyed them together. I didn’t understand why the producers decided to break them up and replace Steve with this nerdy rich kid. I didn’t think that worked at all.”
The cast of Full House didn’t just sit back and rake in the cash as their show topped the ratings – they also decided that it was important to give back, in the best way they knew how.
The actors appeared in a series of PSAs, which they made for free, encouraging good behavior among impressionable children who were fans of the show. The main messages of the PSAs were to accept yourself and feel that it’s okay to make mistakes.
Almost all sitcoms feature some sort of classic catchphrase (Different Strokes – “wutchu talkin’ ’bout Willis?!) but Full House is undoubtedly the champion of catchphrases.
Joey’s catchphrase, accompanied by a sign language gesture, was “Cut it out,” D.J. always said “Oh, my lanta,” Jesse’s signature was “Have mercy!” Stephanie had a grand total of three catchphrases: “Pin a rose on your nose,” “hot dog!” and “how rude!” With that many catchphrases in every episode, the writers must have had an easy job!
Critics Were Brutal
While Full House isn’t exactly Shakespeare, it definitely did not deserve the level of vitriol it received when it first premiered in 1987.
In an interview with MTV for the show’s 25th anniversary, creator Jeff Franklin revealed that, “When Full House came on the air, the reviews were scathing. We got an F in People magazine. All of the critics hated the show. It wasn’t until Season 4 or 5 that we started to see good reviews.”
You Oughta Know?
Uncle Joey was the show’s resident goofball. From his funny voice to his lame jokes, he was the lovable guy who tied the family together and was there for everyone, no matter what.
However, in real life, apparently Dave Coulier wasn’t so universally adored. Alanis Morisette’s song, “You Oughta Know,” was, shockingly, written for Dave! Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned, and Alanis’ lyrics burn with anger and resentment for the ex boyfriend who broke her heart. Who would’ve thought?
The Olsens Vs. The Rest Of The Cast
Netflix approached Jodie Sweetin, Dave Coulier, John Stamos, Candace Cameron Bure, and Bob Saget with the idea of doing a follow up series called Fuller House.
Since most of the cast had not much going on at the time, they all agreed to reprise their roles in the series. However, the Olsen twins didn’t even acknowledge the offer, and that has been used as an ongoing joke on the show. There was even a scene where Stephanie rings Michelle and she rejects the call!
Major Plot Holes
The transition between season 1 and season 2 was a rough one, and that becomes super clear due to some major plot holes. Basically, since season 1 didn’t have great ratings, writers decided to switch it up and try different things to gain popularity with viewers during season 2.
One example of this is how in season 2 (and for most of the series) Danny Tanner is obsessed with cleaning. This is a direct contrast from his messiness in season 1.
It was almost cancelled after the first season because of abysmal ratings. Although it ended up being a massive success, the original series didn’t do so well, mostly because it was in an 8 pm time slot.
For the second season, network executives decided to run Full House directly after the already popular show Perfect Strangers. The rest is history – all of the following seasons had Full House consistently in the Top 10 in the Nielsen ratings.
Over Their Heads
Bob Saget has had a lot to say about all of his antics that went on behind the scenes of Full House. In a recent interview he mentioned that the Olsen twins would eventually tell him that they knew something inappropriate had been said when all of the adults around them started laughing.
Luckily for the impressionable young stars, they didn’t get the gist of whatever dirty joke was being told by their grown up cast mates.
Stranger Than Fiction
Saget also recalls another memorable occasion when he got up to mischief with John Stamos off set. On one occasion, the two were at a comedy club in Los Angeles when they took a trip to the bathroom.
The only other person there at the time was a young adult. To have a little bit of fun, they decided to talk to each other in their Full House characters. The onlooker was so thrown off he missed his mark just a little bit.
Leaving TV Behind
While far from the most popular couple, Danny’s several seasons long romance with Vicky became one of the highlights of his character’s arc. After the two had their final onscreen breakup, the actress behind Vicky, Gail Edwards had a break up of her own to go through.
She decided to leave the acting world behind after leaving Full House, moving first to the Southwest. She currently lives in Miami, though she came out of retirement for an appearance on Fuller House.
Bob Saget was a relatively well known stand up comic before taking on the role of Danny Tanner on Full House. Despite the fact that the set was full of child actors, Bob wasn’t shy about breaking out dirty jokes from his routines.
He often clashed with producers on set because he refused to stop swearing and telling adult anecdotes despite being in close proximity to children. While his character was pretty mild mannered, Bob was definitely not.
Match Made In Heaven?
You might not think of the set of a TV show as the ideal setting to meet your future spouse, but Kirk Cameron of Growing Pains fame actually met his wife, Chelsea Noble, on the Full House set.
Kirk had come to visit his sister Candace Cameron Bure, who played D.J. Tanner on the show. Chelsea and Kirk Cameron are born again Christians who went on to have six children. With that many kids, talk about a real life Full House!
The original premise of the show was extremely different, and much more fitting to the entertainment industry work Bob Saget and Dave Coulier had done up to that point.
The show at first was about three troubled stand up comedians living together and titled “House Of Comics.” It was definitely not supposed to be a family friendly show, but in the end network executives decided to do a complete conceptual overhaul due to the success of The Cosby Show.
The Detroit Connection
Despite the fact that the show is set in San Francisco, it’s super clear that Joey Tanner is a big Detroit Redwings fan. He owns a ton of Redwings memorabilia and even rocks his signature Redwings jersey in multiple episodes.
It’s thought that these elements came from Dave Coulier himself, as he is originally from the Detroit area and he wanted to give a shout out to his hometown. Dave has said in interviews he is a diehard Redwings fan.
Reunited And It Sounds So Good
Since the kids who grew up watching Full House are now adults, there’s been a major resurgence in the popularity of the show.
People look back so fondly at Full House that in July 2013, the make believe band that Uncle Jesse sang in, called Jesse and the Rippers, were invited to perform on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon. They performed a medley of classic Beach Boys and Elvis Presley songs, and ended their set, of course, with the Full House theme song.
That Dog Looks Familiar…
Buddy, the world’s most famous basketball playing golden retriever, graced the set of Full House with a special cameo appearance on season 2 of the series, in the episode “They Call It Puppy Love.”
The plot revolved around the kids in the house scheming to convince the adults to let them keep the dog they found on a street corner. Buddy went on to star in the blockbuster smash hit “Air Bud” which grossed over $30 million worldwide.