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“Cheers” is considered season 12 without Ted Danson/Sam Malone

That ABC comedy cheers had its series finale in 1993 after 11 seasons. There was a brief chance cheers could have continued with season 12, but it would have been without Ted Danson, who starred as Sam Malone in all 11. That idea didn’t last long, said creators Glen and Les Charles, James Burrows, writer/co-producer Ken Levine, and writer/producer Rob Long.

That cheers The creators spoke to Variety for the show’s 25th anniversary in 2018. Here’s what they remembered from the discussions cheers season 12

Danson has been in every episode of cheers. Even after Sam sold the bar, he went back to work for Rebecca Howe (Kirstie Alley). But after 11 years, Danson was ready to move on.

RELATED: ‘Cheers’: Ted Danson and Shelley Long beat 2 other couples for Sam and Diane roles

“I remember the year before, after we finished a decade, I was like, ‘Ten seasons, that seems like a nice round number: five seasons with Shelley [Long]five with Kirstie [Alley],’” Glen Variety said. “But then you’re like, ‘Well, it puts a lot of people out of work. …Let’s give it another year!’ And then a few months later, after we decided to do another year, Ted showed up and said this was his last year, he wanted to try other things.”

They survived the departure of Shelley Long as Diane Chambers and the death of Nicholas Colosanto as Coach. They welcomed Woody Harrelson as Woody and Kelsey Grammer as Frasier Crane, with Bebe Neuwirth a regular guest as Lilith.

“We talked about doing another season, but he was adamant,” Burrows said. “He felt like he played that character and wanted to move on.”

So the question became, could cheers Does season 12 work without Sam? The short answer was no.

RELATED: ‘Cheers’: How the show was saved from cancellation in the summer after Season 1

“The Charles brothers and I talked for half an hour, maybe an hour about trying to do the show without Sam Malone,” Burrows said. “But we didn’t want that. We wanted to go to the top.”

Danson gave cheers plenty of notice to finish the show.

“Ted at least gave us half a season so we could prepare for the end,” Levine said. “In fact Glen and Les came back and pretty much guided the ship through what was probably the last third of the season.”

If you haven’t been there, it’s hard to overstate how monumental the ending is cheers was. And that was just for the viewers. The creators explained how it was this last season.

“Knowing that we were going into our 11th season, we were kind of prepared,” Long said. “Even though it turned out to be one of those things where you think you’re prepared, but you’re never really prepared.”

Les conceded that even if Danson hadn’t made his decision, maybe they would have had the sense to wrap it up anyway.

“I think everyone kind of had a feeling,” Les said. “I would not say that cheers had run its course – it was still a very popular show and there was a lot of energy behind it – but I don’t think we would have stopped it just for Ted. That was certainly the death knell when he moved out. But I think we all felt it was about time.”

RELATED: ‘Cheers’ Theme Song Changed Original Lyrics

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