In 1968, the CBS network debuted among the many iconic sitcoms in TV history, All in the Family. Carroll O’Connor play the show’s command character, the bigoted “meathead,” Archie Bunker.

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Despite the show’s long-standing success, O’Connor practically didn’t make it come the finish of the seires.

Carroll O’Connor was sure the show would be a flop


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Carroll O’Connor and also Jean Stapleton | Ron Eisenberg/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

The display tackled facility and controversial topics, consisting of racism and sexism. Due to the controversial subject issue covered in the show, O’Connor thought that the display would fail.

He expected the pilot episode to it is in the just episode, so much so that he had actually it composed in his contract the the show’s creator, Norman Lear, promise come pay for O’Connor’s airfare to go back to Rome when the display failed.

Even despite the iconic actor thought the present would bomb, the immersed himself in the personality of Archie Bunker and was determined to perform the function to the best of his ability. Back he had a backup arrangement included in his contract, that never had actually to use it due to the fact that the display was a huge success.

O’Connor practically quit the show


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O’Connor practically left the present during season five because of a financial disagreement through Lear.

According to display screen Rant, O’Connor sue Lear for more than $60,000 of missed wages. Although O’Connor and also Lear eventually reached one agreement and O’Connor resumed his function on the show, the two men had actually a shaky partnership from climate on.

The talented actor didn’t connect with the All in the Family executive producer after the show’s abrupt cancellation in 1979.

During O’Connor’s audition, Lear immediately knew he uncovered the best actor to bring the stubborn personality to life. The former English teacher turned actor to be an clever man, unequal the personality he portrayed. Much to Lear’s dismay, the actor and fictional character mutual one unique personality trait, stubbornness.

The brilliant and tenacious actor rewrote nearly the whole pilot episode and also continued to affect the show’s script advancement throughout the series.

Lear sent the In the warm of the Night gibbs a letter numerous years after the display ended.

Four year later, O’Connor happen away, Lear went to O’Connor’s widow and also she revealed the her so late husband had actually kept the letter top top his workdesk for 4 years. Lear recalled, “It was very an overwhelming dealing through him as Archie Bunker — I worshipped the ground the walked on, over there couldn’t be an additional Archie Bunker in the background of the world, he populated it like no one rather could. Having said that, that was very difficult.”

Carroll O’Connor’s absence opened the door of possibility for other actors members

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Isabel Sanford, a fellow actors member on All in the Family, described O’Connor’s lack positively through highlighting exactly how his absence caused other personalities to get more screen time. Sanford played Louise Jefferson on the sitcom and had request the show’s creators to please give her character an ext lines. Her requests for more lines were fulfilled when O’Connor go on strike.

“Carroll O’Connor went out and joined them,” Sanford describes of the actor’s absence. “Therefore, that offered everybody work-related for a while. I operated one main after main after main on the show since he wasn’t there. The was the end on this strike v these men, i beg your pardon was an excellent for me. I loved it.”

Even though Sanford was rather content through her role on the show, she time in the spotlight opened up a brand-new opportunity.

In 1975, she character Louise Jefferson left All in the Family and became a top character ~ above the spinoff series, The Jefferson’s.

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The strike assisted shape O’Connor’s career and also gave method to other beloved classic sitcoms, consisting of The Jefferson’s. Even though O’Connor and Lear’s relationship was never ever the same after the strike, the two men hosted a deep common respect because that each other.