Photo by Screen Gems Television
In September 18 1965, was released one of the most iconic shows of all time, ‘I Dream of Jeannie’. The show talks about the Captain Tony Nelson, who is an astronaut. While on a mission, he discovered a mysterious bottle. Opening it, he released Jeannie (a Genie) who was so overjoyed at her release she promised to serve Captain Nelson. Nelson is unsure what to make of Jeannie, especially given that his work is highly secret and his superiors tend to keep a close eye on him.
Stars: Barbara Eden, Larry Hagman, Bill Daily
Creator: Sidney Sheldon.
To celebrate the 50th birthday, here are some of the curiosities about this show.
- In order, Major Anthony Nelson’s first three wishes were: for Jeannie to speak to him in English, for a ship to come to the island he was stranded on and rescue him or them, and to remove all curses put on Jeannie that caused her to be imprisoned inside the bottle.
- Originally, Jeannie’s power was activated by folding her arms followed by a series of eye flutters. This was soon replaced by nodding her head and blinking once.
- According to Barbara Eden’s autobiography, “Jeannie Out of the Bottle,” Larry Hagman strongly disliked his character in most of Sidney Sheldon’s scripts.
- All of the characters drive Pontiacs. The only exception is the General, who drove a Cadillac convertible in the series finale.
- General Schaeffer’s dog was named “Jupiter”.
- I Dream of Jeannie (1965) debuted on NBC TV, stations, on Saturday, September 18th, 1965, one evening after Hogan’s Heroes (1965), debuted on CBS TV, on Friday evening, September 17th, 1965.
- Jeannie’s pink 1960s-era harem costume is now housed in the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.. The green one is probably there also, next to the far more popular pink.
- The fancy antique bottle which Jeannie called home was actually a decorative Jim Beam liquor decanter, which originally contained “Beam’s Choice” Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey. The bottle had been decorated and painted with gold leaf by one of the show’s art department employees.
- Barbara Eden personally selected the pink/maroon color combination of Jeannie’s harem outfit. Pink symbolizes the playful, girlish aspects of her personality, while maroon symbolizes the fiery, headstrong aspects of her personality. Eden also selected the purple trim of her bottle.
- Barbara Eden was the first blonde who auditioned for the role of Jeannie.
- While filming season 1, Barbara Eden was pregnant with her only son, Matthew Ansara. Her pregnancy was disguised by filming her in close-up or with a copious veil covering her front.
- Tony Nelson wears a blue Air Force uniform, and Roger Healy a green Army uniform, to symbolize their joint efforts in the Space Program.