Closer Weekly's new issue, on newsstands now, gives readers an inside look at The Golden Girls' unforgettable friendship through the years from their rocky start to the unexpected bond that made the show golden!
“It was the four of them against the world,” author of the new book Golden Girls Forever Jim Colucci tells Closer. “They got overwhelmed by this whirlwind show, but they helped each other through it. It was a thing of solidarity — they were in this together.”
Their real-life affection for one another came across on-screen and that tangible chemistry was a key factor to The Golden Girls’ enduring success. “If it had been four others, it might have been a good show, but not a great show,” he says. “It was magic in every way.”
The Golden Girls stars in 1985. (Photo Credit: Getty Images)
The upcoming book, Golden Girls Forever, tells the never-before-heard stories of how the "Fab Four" were chosen and how they became a family. In an exclusive excerpt from the book, featured only in Closer Weekly, Rue McClanahan as well as the pilot's director, Jay Sandrich, explains that casting the Fab Four didn’t go as planned. Originally, Rue was cast for Rose and Betty White was cast for Blanche but Jay decided to switched the roles around and that’s when the magic began.
RELATED: See Never Before Seen Photos From The Golden Girls Set!
“My agent told me that they had Betty White in mind for the Blanche part, and my heart sank,” Rue remembers. “I said, ‘How could I go to work every day playing Rose?’ because I knew instinctively that I was just too right for Blanche. And she said, ‘Well, it’s either that, or you don’t do the series at all.’”
The Golden Girls stars in 1988. (Photo Credit: Getty Images)
Not willing to give up on making TV history — “I knew from the moment I opened the envelope and saw The Golden Girls written on the cover in cursive typeface that it would be a hit,” she claims — Rue acquiesced; she would play Rose. But then, on her first meeting with the pilot’s director, Mary Tyler Moore and soap veteran Jay Sandrich, something historic happened. After her reading of Rose, “Jay said, ‘I’m going to do something unorthodox — would you mind reading Blanche for me?’” Rue remembers. “And I said, ‘If you insist.’”
RELATED: Betty White Reveals Her Secret to Good Health — Find Out What It Is!
“I had never met Rue,” Jay explains. “After she read Rose, I said to her, ‘You’re really wonderful — but I don’t for one second believe you’re innocent.’”
To read the full excerpt from Jim Colucci’s book, Golden Girls Forever, which includes the details of Elaine Stritch’s audition, pick up the latest issue of Closer Weekly, on newsstands now!
Your life just got exponentially better and more stylish now you've signed up for our newsletter. Fabulousness awaits!