Part 2 of the trivia!
John Masius created the first pilot for the series, but it was a darker, less hopeful story than the producers wanted and cost the studio two-million dollars to produce. It was meant to focus on suffering's existing due to a cruel sense of humor by God, and showed Tess as a chain-smoking angel who was frequently at Monica's throat. (Della Reese once said in a interview that in it Tess was mad at Monica because she owed her four-hundred dollars.) Masius wrote the show as a reflection of his spiritual anger at the time at his two children being born disabled. Martha Williamson was approached to be the series' executive producer in early 1994. She described the pilot she received as "upsetting" as it "portrayed angels as recycled dead people with power over life and death". She initially declined the position, but during a lunch with Andy Hill, then President of CBS, she mentioned the show and suggested he find a producer who would create a show with "loving, joyful" angels that the audience would have to believe in.
Most of Della Reese's friends appeared on the show: Rosa Parks, Marla Gibbs, Gavin MacLeod, Ernest Borgnine, Bill Cosby, Bonnie Bartlett, and Maya Angelou.
Compared to Walker, Texas Ranger (1993), another CBS show, this was another series to have featured more country singers, singing either regular country music or Christian country music.
An often-repeated false story is that noted atheist Madalyn Murry-O'Hair once campaigned to get the show off the air. The truth is that O'Hair had passed away well before the show debuted.
Tess's nickmame is: Elohite Master of the Watch.
When Della Reese was asked to star in the series, she wanted to have a one-shot agreement between CBS and producer Martha Williamson, but ordered more episodes. Reese was widely seen as a key component of the show's success.
Della Reese's health problem became obvious, and she collapsed on the set and was rushed to the hospital in 2000.
The only known episode where Andrew takes a person's soul to Hell is the fifth season episode "Into the Fire".
Throughout the show's run, Tess behaves like a surrogate mother to Monica, as did Della Reese to Roma Downey in real-life. Downey said in an interview that she had lost her mother when she was very young, and Reese acted as her mother while they met.
The only religious show in which profanity was used.
Della Reese was living in Beverly Hills, California, when cast for the series. (Most of the series was produced and filmed in Salt Lake City, Utah, and various locations surrounding the city. ) Throughout the making of the series, she would fly to her home and back every weekend and on other breaks to be with her family.
In the final season (which was the ninth), all actors had to be taken 10% off of their salaries, a situation in which Della Reese refused to give to CBS, knowing the network had enough money already. Unfortunately, it had to be this way, and consequently, each actor was asked to be absent from at least 1 episode, esp. Reese herself.
According to Della Reese, as the producers came up with a show, Martha Williamson, said in a production meeting, "This is going to be a story, and we're going to use the word 'God'. Can you live with that?" and Reese was laughing.
By the time the series ended production for its second season, a spinoff show Promised Land (1996) was already launched. Because the series continued production for a third season, a new crew was hired for production of Promised Land. In the meantime, parts of the pilot were rewritten and two characters from the original pilot were recast. Gerald McRaney and Wendy Phillips, who were guest stars on this show, were the first to be cast for the spinoff. Originally, the part of Hattie Greene was played by Peg Phillips; Celeste Holm replaced her in the cast. The part of Nathaniel Greene was also recast with Eddie Karr, playing the role in the new version of the pilot and throughout the series.
The character of Andrew was supposed to be on for only two episodes, but proved so popular, John Dye had received a starring role, towards the end of the second season.
The show's research (esp. on people with disabilities) was handled with respect.
After the show's cancelation, Della Reese, Roma Downey and John Dye were very good friends, until Dye's passing in early 2011 and Reese's passing in late 2017, making Downey, the only surviving cast member. The TV series has had a great success thanks to the excellent actors and screenwriters.
The word "angel" means "Messenger" in the Greek language.
Della Reese composed the show's theme song, "Walk With You."
Monica can't sing, in real-life, Roma Downey is a singer.
After reading a bunch of junk scripts for television, Roma Downey was first cast as Monica in the series.
Della Reese was a popular singer during the run of the show, and was also given opportunities to sing many secular songs, in addition to Christian music.
At the beginning and/or end of most episodes, a white dove, the Biblical symbol of peace, is shown flying across the screen.
The show concluded after nine seasons due to low ratings but, at the same time, had also run its course.
Roma Downey was pregnant during the second season, and wore large clothing to disguise this.
Before Roma Downey was casted in the series, she had never been a Della Reese fan, growing up, by either listening to Reese's music or film.
Originally, the role of Monica was written for a young, unfamiliar American actress, when instead, Roma Downey, being from Ireland, won the role, who could forget doing an American accent.
On the very first episode of the series, Della Reese ends up with a rather old, but in beautiful condition, red Cadillac convertible. Several episodes do have side action where the car is breaking down, but Della always gets it fixed, even if she has to work on it herself.
Before she became an angel and a supervisor, Tess (Della Reese) used to work for her first assignment as a food tester for one of the Caesars.
For most of the series' run, Tess drives a 1972 Cadillac Fleetwood Eldorado, on occasion, Monica would be driving the car, though Tess gave her the car, on the series' finale.
In the first episode, Tess told Monica this phrase, when doing her employee's first assignment: "You get your little angel butt back to the city,"
Some certain facts stating about Tess and Monica, being born-again Christians, acknowledges that Della Reese and Roma Downey are born-again Christians, in real-life.
This series launched the acting career of Roma Downey. She previously performed as Hippolyta in Hercules and the Amazon Women (1994).
Having liked all colors, Roma Downey tended to wear a lot of black, because she wears so much white on the show.
The word "God" was used that was also the supremacy for this show.
This show is similar to Highway to Heaven (1984).
Monica's nickname is: "Miss Wings". Almost any time that Tess is attempting to make a point with her, her boss gave her a reference.
In one episode, Andrew wanted to borrow Tess's 1972 Cadillac Eldorado, when Samuel stole it.
A fan/friend of Della Reese's, Angela Lansbury guest-starred on this episode as an old British lady, who had no choice to unveil her secrets of the past.
Della Reese's childhood friend Marla Gibbs guest-starred in 1 episode of this show, as one of the psychics, attempting to commit suicide. This was after Reese had guest starred in 2 episodes of Gibbs's 227 (1985). On one episode, Reese played Sandra's long-lost mother, who was visiting town, and in another episode, she played an angel (in Heaven) whom Lester had dreamt of, when both he & Mary were attending church.
Billie Holliday gives Andrew a name 'Gingerman,' when he was posing as a pianist.
Several people played different characters over the course of the show's nine seasons.
When Della Reese was approached by producer Martha Williamson for her first choice, for the older female lead role of Tess, she was reluctant to play that role, when she went ahead and play the role, anyways.
Roma Downey (Monica) was the only actress to appear and to participate in almost every episode of the series, with the exception of 2 in the final season (Touched by an Angel: The Root of All Evil (2003) and Touched by an Angel: The Show Must Not Go On (2003)). In second place, Della Reese (Tess) had appeared and participated in almost every episode of the series, with the exception of 2 in the final season (Touched by an Angel: Bring On the Rain (2002) and Touched by an Angel: The Good Earth (2003)), plus 1 in the third season (Touched by an Angel: The Journalist (1996)), before.
Despite not starring in the same season as Bonnie Franklin and Valerie Bertinelli, who both co-starred together on One Day at a Time (1975), they were both featured on the show, respectively. Franklin played one of the jurists, before Bertinelli played an angel.
The show premiered on Wednesday, September 21, 1994, on CBS at 9:00 PM EST/8:00 PM PST, which bumped In the Heat of the Night (1988) on Fridays, a month later, then, later the same season, it aired at 9:00 PM EST/8:00 PM PST, before Walker, Texas Ranger (1993) and immediately following Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman (1993), for 2 years, before moving the show on Sunday, at 8:00 PM EST/7:00 PM PST, immediately following 60 Minutes (1968), replacing the then canceled Murder, She Wrote (1984), for 5 years, before moving the show to Saturday, at 8:00 PM EST/7:00 PM PST, for the final 2 years.
"Bar Mitzvah" is dedicate to the memory of Jack DuVall.
Monica loves coffee.
Tess is a singer, as to what Della Reese was in real-life.
The original concept toyed the line between "God Is Evil" and "Humans are just another of God's Wonderful Toys", but CBS fired the creator when he refused to write more idealistic episodes.
The series is believed to be Highway to Heaven (1984) of the 1990s. Both series are about angels sent to Earth by god to help people.
Recurring character Russell Greene and his family went on to have their own spin-off series Promised Land (1996) which the series focused on the Greene family whom hit the road and travels across the United States when Russell loses his job. The show ran for 3 seasons. Roma Downey, Della Reese and John Dyes made guest appearances as Monica, Tess and Andrew.