‘Full House’ Secrets You Never Knew
The show was almost called something completely different.
“Full House” has been on the air fairly consistently since its debut in 1987. Whether you grew up with the original (which aired its last episode in 1995), caught re-runs on Nick at Nite or first watched it streaming online, chances are you’re probably familiar with the hit ABC series. But even the most avid of fans couldn’t guess everything that happened behind the scenes of the show.
From the show’s original title to the co-stars who almost dated in real life, here’s a look at some “Full House” secrets you probably never knew.
Mary-Kate And Ashley Olsen Drew Some Background Artwork
The cute scribbled kids’ drawings you sometimes saw hung on the fridge in the background of the Tanner family’s kitchen? The Olsen twins actually drew some of those themselves, as revealed in a 1993 behind-the-scenes look at the set on “Life Around Here with Steve Hartman.”
John Stamos Came Up With Uncle Jesse’s Name
John Stamos’ character, Jesse, was originally supposed to be named Adam. Stamos didn’t like that name so he came up with the idea of changing it to Jesse as a tribute to Elvis’ late twin brother. The character’s last name was also changed from Cochran to Katsopolis in season two as a nod to Stamos’ Greek heritage.
The Show Originally Had A Different Title And Premise
“Full House” creator Jeff Franklin originally conceived of a show called “House of Comics,” about three stand-up comedians sharing a house. But ABC was looking for its own version of family-oriented shows that were popular at the time, like “Family Ties.” That’s when Franklin turned his original idea into what became “Full House.”
Bob Saget Wasn’t In ABC’s Original Pilot
Though Saget was reportedly Franklin’s first choice to play Danny Tanner, the actor already had a gig on CBS’ ”Morning Program.” Actor John Posey was then hired to fill the role, portraying Danny in the network’s original pilot. But his hiring didn’t last long. After Saget was fired from CBS, Franklin let Posey go and brought Saget on to play Danny.
Dave Coulier Ad-Libbed Some Of Joey’s Lines
The “Full House” writers put Coulier’s talent for doing voices to good use on the show. As Coulier told BuzzFeed, the writers worked with him to incorporate those voice-over skills into his character, even going to watch his live act a few times for ideas. In later seasons, Coulier says he was given more freedom to ad-lib.
“Sometimes – it didn’t happen until season three – in the script, they would let me improv,” Coulier stated. “And in the script it would just say: ‘Dave will come up with something funny here.’” No pressure!
Coulier And Saget Were Once Real-Life Roommates
In a funny case of life imitating art, Coulier once crashed on Saget’s couch for three weeks while he was between apartments. On the show, Joey also went to stay at Danny’s house temporarily — but didn’t end up leaving for years!
Candace Cameron Bure Had Her First Kiss On Camera
Candace Cameron Bure grew up while filming “Full House,” so it’s no surprise she experienced a lot of firsts on the show — including her first kiss! In the season three episode “13 Candles,” Bure’s character, D.J. Tanner, shares her very first kiss with on-screen boyfriend Kevin (Scott Curtis). It was the star’s first kiss as well.
“It’s awkward and uncomfortable and you have a million people looking at you,” she recalled on “The View.”
Lori Loughlin Wasn’t Supposed To Have A Big Role
Lori Loughlin, aka Becky, has said she was initially only slated to appear on six episodes of “Full House.” But her character became so popular, she was quickly bumped up to become a regular on the series — and thank goodness. The show just wouldn’t have been the same without Jesse and Becky’s relationship.
Stamos And Loughlin Almost Dated For Real
As young actors on daytime soaps, Stamos and Loughlin knew each other long before they played a couple on “Full House.” The two have admitted they once went on a date to Disneyland as teenagers — but, to the disappointment of fans everywhere, their relationship never blossomed into a full-blown romance. However, the two reportedly remain close friends.
Scott Weinger was only supposed to be on the show for one episode
When Scott Weinger got cast as Steve on “Full House,” it was only supposed to be for a single episode, as he told the Huffington Post.
“It was just supposed to be that one episode and then, they wanted to add a character for the following season as D.J.’s permanent boyfriend, a regular character, and they asked me to play him,” he said. “Of course, I was very excited.”
Weinger Took Bure To The Premiere Of ‘Aladdin’
In addition to playing Steve on “Full House,” Weinger also voiced the titular character in Disney’s 1992 classic “Aladdin.” And he apparently took his favorite co-star to the premiere!
“I’ll never forget going to the original premiere of Aladdin with you when I was 15 years old,” Candace Cameron Bure said to Weinger during an episode of “The View.”
Stamos Didn’t Like The Olsen Twins At First
Stamos has admitted that he wasn’t exactly a fan of the Olsen twins when they first arrived to the “Full House” set.
“They cried a lot in the beginning,” he said, per Glamour. Producers briefly brought in another set of twins to play Michelle, but they didn’t work out much better. So, in the end, they stuck with the Olsens and it turned out to be a great call.
Coulier Stole Joey’s Catchphrase From A Friend
Coulier adopted Joey’s trademark phrase, “Cut it out,” from his friend Mark Cendrowski, now known for his directorial work on “The Big Bang Theory.” During the pair’s short time as a comedy duo, Cendrowski played a suave character, who would tell a woman in the audience, “You’re in love with me, now cut. It. Out.”
“I told him, ‘I’m going to steal that. I’m going to use that someday,’” Coulier told Buzzfeed. “And he said, ‘Ah, you can’t steal that.’ So I starred on a show on Nickelodeon called ‘Out of Control’ and it became my hook on the show. And when ‘Full House’ started, I just brought it over and it stuck.”
Jodie Sweetin Didn’t Actually Audition
Unlike with the other characters on the show, there was no casting call for the role of Stephanie Tanner. After seeing Jodie Sweetin appear on an episode of the sitcom “Valerie,” Jeff Franklin ended up writing the part of the middle Tanner sister specifically for her.
Coulier Went To Extremes To Make Saget Laugh
In a 2014 Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything), Coulier admitted that he used to throw his underwear into the set rafters or onto the roof of his dressing room to make Saget laugh. Stamos revealed that he noticed a pair of Coulier’s underwear still stuck up there years later when he did a guest spot on “Friends,” which was shot on the same stage.
Andrea Barber Didn’t Like One Running Joke
Andrea Barber has admitted that one of the things she didn’t love about “Full House” was the long-running joke about Kimmy Gibbler’s smelly feet.
“I always hated the foot joke! I mean maybe it was funny the first time. But it ran waaaay too long and it wasn’t even really that creative of a joke, in my opinion,” she told TheVine. “The foot gimmick haunts me to this day — people STILL ask me to this very day if I have stinky feet.”
Only One Episode Was Actually Filmed In San Francisco
Though the exterior used for the Tanners’ famous home was (and still is) located in San Francisco, most of the show was filmed on a set in Burbank, California. Only one episode of “Full House” — season eight’s “Comet’s Excellent Adventure”— was actually shot in San Francisco.
Coulier’s Ex-Wife Was In An Episode
Coulier met his first wife, Jayne Modean, on set. She appeared as an older Michelle in a dream sequence in season three. The two, who share a son, were married for two years before splitting up.
A Common Myth About Comet The Dog Isn’t True
It’s a common internet rumor that the dog who always played Comet on “Full House” also played Buddy in “Air Bud.” But that’s actually not the case. According to Buzzfeed, Buddy from “Air Bud” did make a single appearance as Comet, but that was it. The dog who went on to become the permanent Comet did appear in a movie, but it was called “Fluke.”
The 3 Adult Stars Got In Trouble For Their On-Set Jokes
When the younger actors weren’t on set, Saget, Coulier and Stamos would find ways to keep each other and the crew entertained. What they didn’t realize is that their antics were being displayed in the kids’ dressing rooms, leading them to get scolded by both parents and producers for their adult jokes.
“The three of us — me, Bob and John — we got in trouble a lot. From the moms,” Coulier said, per The Huffington Post. “What we didn’t realize is that the kids are backstage and they have monitors in their rooms …”
Coulier Was A Prankster On Set
It might not surprise you to know that, of all the cast members on set, Coulier was the one to most often pull pranks on his co-stars. When Joey was supposed to make an entrance, Coulier would sometimes walk in wearing no pants or hide in the bleachers instead.
“I would sit in the bleachers and do this character that would drive my fellow actors nuts, where I would laugh too loud on purpose at their scenes,” he revealed in a Reddit AMA.
Franklin Regrets Leaving ‘Full House’ After Season Five
The series creator (seen below at far left) exited “Full House” after its fifth season to create “Hangin’ With Mr. Cooper” for ABC — a move that he later told The New York Times is “the biggest regret of my life.” Though “Full House” continued for three more seasons, Franklin has said the show suffered after his departure. His regret over leaving the show is what partially motivated him to renew the Tanners’ story in 2016 with Netflix’s “Fuller House.”
Bure Created Her Own Catchphrase
D.J.’s catchphrase wasn’t as prominent as that of some of the other characters, but she did have one in “Oh my lanta!” According to the Biography Channel, Bure came up with the catchphrase on her own, as an alternative to saying “Oh my God.”
Two Beloved Props Were Ruined By Dogs
In a funny coincidence, two of the iconic props that Bure and Coulier took from the show as souvenirs each got ruined by their family dogs. Coulier told Buzzfeed that producers gave him Mr. Woodchuck, Joey’s puppet. Unfortunately, his yellow Labrador retriever hated the puppet and ended up ripping its face to shreds. Similarly, Bure took home DJ’s pillow pet, but, as she told Instyle in 2015, “Sadly, my dog ate it.”
More Seasons Almost Aired On The WB
ABC decided to cancel “Full House” in 1995 after eight seasons, due to the show’s ballooning budget and declining ratings. The WB reportedly tried to poach the family series for more seasons on its own brand-new network. However, some of the core actors weren’t interested in the offer, leaving “Full House” fans with a somewhat abrupt ending.
The Olsens Were Each Unique Performers With Different Strengths
How did producers figure out which of the Olsen twins would play each scene as Michelle? In order to play to their strengths, Ashley would normally play the scenes that called for Michelle to be sassy, while Mary Kate usually played the quieter, more emotion-driven scenes.
Coulier Introduced Bure To Her Husband
In addition to playing her uncle Joey onscreen, Dave Coulier also played matchmaker for Candace Cameron Bure offscreen. He introduced her to her husband of more than 20 years, Val Bure, at a charity hockey game. After the couple was introduced, they went on a date the next day and were engaged in less than a year.
Guest Star Little Richard Accidentally Slapped Sweetin
“Full House” saw its fair share of guest stars, but Sweetin says she’ll never forget the time Little Richard unintentionally hit her while appearing on the show. “I was standing next to him and we were doing this scene where he was playing the piano and he did a big finish with his hands and it was just like, ‘Boom,’” she told the Huffington Post. “He felt so bad. But I’m on a fairly short list of people who can say they’ve been slapped by Little Richard.”
Bure And Weinger Also Went To Prom Together
D.J. and Steve were a classic on-again, off-again couple on “Full House.” Though actors Bure and Weinger never dated in real life, the two co-stars did maintain a close relationship offscreen. Bure even took Weinger to her real-life high school prom, as she revealed in a throwback photo on Instagram. These two did a lot of cool things together!
Jeff Franklin Actually Bought The Tanner House
The famous home that appears in the opening of “Full House” was purchased by the series creator in 2016. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Jeff Franklin paid roughly $4 million for the property. He also threw a party for neighbors as an apology of sorts for the daily onslaught of fans who visit the street to take photos in front of the home. Apparently, the party wasn’t enough to ease neighbors’ concerns though — as the city banned tour buses from stopping by the house in 2018.