The Big Bang Theory had a huge eighth season on the network, and this week the creative team and a couple of the actors headed to Comic-Con, where they talked Season 8 and a few upcoming items. During the panel, executive producer Bill Prady told a story about how none other than Bill Murray helped the series to get an awesome Ghostbusters clip into episode. In order to do so, he had to yell at a prominent studio executive.
During the panel, writer Tara Hernandez mentioned that the team did a “fun little bit” with Ghostbusters last TV season. However, there was a problem. The team discovered at the last minute that there was a snafu and they couldn’t use the clip. So Bill Prady used his connections to try to work out a deal. Here’s what happened:
That’s not a great start in terms of getting permission to a movie studio, but if we know one thing about Bill Murray, it’s that he’s kind of a rockstar. Apparently, Joel got in touch with his brother right away and Murray called up and hassled the unnamed movie executive, saying:
Later that day, Prady got a call that said the team had earned permission not only to use the clip from Ghostbusters that they had requested on The Big Bang Theory but that they literally had permission to use whatever they wanted from the film. The scene in question ended up being the hilarious clip of the team discussing how the science in Ghostbusters was wrong.
As if this story could get any better, Prady heard later that Murray had called Joel after talking with the executive and told him he didn’t think his little talk with the network executive was going to work.
As an audience, it’s a little hard to relate to the difficulties of putting together a TV series, but this Bill Murray story goes to show how getting what a show needs can sometimes be about who you know and taking a chance on inconveniencing someone. Obviously, these moments don’t always pay off for TV shows, and sometimes plots have to be changed when a show doesn’t have permission to use something, but taking a chance on Bill Murray paid off in a big way in the case of The Big Bang Theory. Considering this is the dude who popped up in an episode of Parks and Rec to play a dead dude, has a weirdo Netflix Christmas special in the works and totally crashed a fan’s karaoke party, I’m not surprised.
You can catch CBS' The Big Bang Theory when it returns for Season 9 on Monday, September 21 at 8 p.m. ET.
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Jessica Rawden is Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. She’s been kicking out news stories since 2007 and joined the full-time staff in 2014. She oversees news content, hiring and training for the site, and her areas of expertise include theme parks, rom-coms, Hallmark (particularly Christmas movie season), reality TV, celebrity interviews and primetime. She loves a good animated movie. Jessica has a Masters in Library Science degree from Indiana University, and used to be found behind a reference desk most definitely not shushing people. She now uses those skills in researching and tracking down information in very different ways.