Although it hasn’t even premiered yet, there already seems to be drama on the set of Chevy Chase’s new TV show. The title for his new pilot “Chev and Bev,” co-starring his “National Lampoon's Vacation” wife Beverly D’Angelo, has been altered to just “Chevy.”
TV Line reports that ABC has reworked the title to highlight just the former "Saturday Night Live" alum's name. According to sources close to the show, D’Angelo had been complaining that she wasn’t a fan of the abbreviation “Bev,” which prompted the network to make the change. Apparently, her role in the pilot will not be diminished as a result. The show will focus on the power couple being forced out of an early retirement to raise their grandchildren.
While it sounds like the decision from the network was not based on any behind-the-scenes drama, Chevy Chase has a history of raising eyebrows. The 71-year-old actor is notoriously difficult to work with and often upsets his co-stars and professional relationships in very public ways.
Most recently, Chase walked off the set of the NBC sitcom “Community,” which just began its sixth season on Yahoo TV Tuesday. He and the show’s creator, Dan Harmon, had a lot of backstage beef that culminated with Chase storming off set, Harmon insulting him in front of his wife and daughter at the show’s wrap party and Chevy responding with an expletive-filled voicemail. Harmon played the voicemail for the crowd at his weekly comedy show “Harmontown,” and soon after, it was made public.
The spat caused Harmon to be fired from the show’s fourth season and Chevy to up and quit in the middle of filming. While this solidified rumors that Chase is a tough person to work with, those rumblings began decades ago during the first season of “Saturday Night Live.”
According to a profile in the Washington Post, Chase quickly rose to prominence during the sketch show’s first season in 1975. With the series not yet the comedy classic that it is today, most of the press focused on Chase, who was a breakout young star at the time. It wasn’t long before ego took over and the actor was making his co-stars feel like they were beneath him.
After one year on “SNL” Chase left for the greener pastures of movie stardom. According to Empire (and legend), when he returned to host an episode during Season 2, he and former co-star Bill Murray came to blows over Chase’s ego.
“It was really a Hollywood fight, a ‘Don’t touch my face!’ kind of thing,” Murray recalled to the magazine in 2012. “Chevy is a big man, I’m not a small guy, and we were separated by my brother Brian [Doyle-Murray], who comes up to my chest. So it was kind of a nonevent. It was just the significance of it. It was an Oedipal thing, a rupture. Because we all felt mad he had left us, and somehow I was the anointed avenging angel, who had to speak for everyone. But Chevy and I are friends now. It’s all fine.”
There’s currently no word on when “Chevy” will premiere on ABC.