Some shows that depict a close, tight-knit group of friends often have the most tumultuous relationships behind the scenes. That 70’s Show had a cast and crew that fit that bill perfectly. No other sitcom has managed to have us fooled in such a way as this classic comedy from the aughts.
The key players from this show had more than just a few flings and disputes. Actors hated each other, others had to depart due to personal crises – one even went to jail for a spell during filming. Each and every cast member on this show had some kind of one-of-a-kind experience while on set, and we’ve looked into just what we’ve missed when the cameras weren’t rolling.
Topher Grace Wasn’t the Loveable One on Set
Rumor has it that Topher Grace, the actor who played the starring role of Eric Forman, was not the most popular guy on set. It turns out that he was known for not being the easiest to get along with onset, and that his attitude toward his castmates made them question his character in real life.
His continued attitude towards those he worked with only made them want to get rid of him at any chance they had. He was the bane of their existence and reportedly just made it harder for his castmates to get their work done in a helpful manner. So, he was kicked off and replaced.
They Had Strange Cast Rituals Before Filming
Actor Wilmer Valderrama, who portrayed Fez, divulged that they spent the moments before filming for every episode, they came up with unique ways to hype each other up. They’d have the highest energy they possibly could and they would come up with one specific detail to get everyone hyped up.
The gang would pick a word ahead of time that would capture the essence of the episode they were about to create. They would choose random words that appeared in the script, but they would also select random words to set the mood. It helped with morale, especially after they had to pretend they actually got along while on screen.
They Have All Either Remained Super Close or Completely Cut Ties With Each Other
Sure, people lose touch over the years, but when everyone in a group keeps talking though another is completely cut out of the conversation, things can feel a little bit weird. Well, this certainly applies to the cast of That 70’s Show, especially after some of them had tumultuous relationships with one another.
The cast of the show sets up reunions more often than social media shows us. Some of them loved working together so much that they would cast each other in projects they worked on together, like Ashton Kutcher’s The Ranch, which included Danny Masterson and Topher Grace. However, Grace’s relationship with the rest of the cast has kept him from being invited to other gatherings.
Producers Desperately Wanted to Replace Topher
If one thing is clear from our research, it’s that actor Topher Grace not only wasn’t very well-loved, but he also really managed to annoy his producers with his every movement. He really left such a bad taste in their mouth that they tried to get rid of him for long before his character was actually written off the show.
His overall attitude was generally negative and his castmates didn’t particularly enjoy conversing with him. While the rest of the cast bonded, he remained isolated from his castmates. If they went out, they usually went out without him. He just wasn’t interested in keeping up any kind of relationship with his castmates.
Can You Guess Which Cast Member Had Zero Professional Acting Experience?
One of these cast members had a pretty big part in the show, but didn’t have a drop of acting experience to date. Well, you guessed it, this article might as well be about Topher Grace, as he is a frequent root of the problem for this group. Unlike the rest, this actor had literally zero experience in acting.
Topher Grace was completely unprepared for the audition process as well. He was asked for a photo, when he would typically have to give a headshot, he was unaware of that step and handed over a picture of him standing with his buddies. Somehow, he still managed to find himself at the center of an iconic sitcom.
Who Made Those Troubling Allegations Against Danny Masterson?
Actor Danny Masterson reportedly needs some help with the definition of the term consent. He has had several women come forward stating that he’d allegedly forced himself on them in a sexual manner. Masterson reportedly showed some more than questionable behavior both on and off the set of That 70’s Show.
He was accused of rape by four different women over a period of the 2000s when he was starring on the show. Not only did the police launch a full-scale investigation, but the production team at the show he was on, The Ranch, decided to take the allegations seriously as well and terminated his contract and character.
Topher Grace Was a Bad Kisser
Here we are again, just taking shots at Topher Grace wherever possible. The actor who played Eric Forman was a notoriously horrible kisser, and it wasn’t even his on-screen girlfriend that made such an allegation. Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who at the time was famous for his role in 3rd Rock From the Sun, was the one to make such claims.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt had a guest role as Eric Forman’s new friend, Buddy. Buddy and Eric had become quite close, and let’s just say that Buddy’s heart skipped a beat whenever he spent time with his new friend. When he saw the opportunity, Buddy went for the kiss, only to get rejected. Gordon-Levitt later said that Grace was an absolutely horrendous kisser, and Lauren Prepon, the on-screen girlfriend, chimed in and agreed.
Mila Kunis Lied About Her Age to Land Her Role
When casting directors were looking for someone to fill the role of Jackie Burkhart, the ultra-privileged “pretty young thing,” casting directors were looking for an adult to fill the role. Mila Kunis really wanted the role, and since she was only 14 at the time, she lied and claimed that she was going to be 18.
The way she saw it, it wasn’t really a lie. “Legally I was 14, but I told them I was a little bit older. I told them I was gonna be 18, which is not technically a lie, cause at one point, I was gonna be 18.” By the time the producers found out, the role had already belonged to her and fit like a glove. They weren’t able to take it away, now.
Danny Masterson Has Had the Opposite of Smooth Sailing
Actor Danny Masterson played Hyde, the most sarcastic member of the gang who knew not to take life too seriously. He often led their stoner circle sessions and made things light for his friends. He was known for being very sarcastic, and found himself hitting hard times… when he was taken in by his friends, the Forman family.
Years later, Danny Masterson was starring alongside Ashton Kutcher in the Netflix original sitcom, The Ranch. They were working together quite well until several women came forward with allegations of rape against the actor, and his contract was in turn eliminated.
Ashton Kutcher Rose to Become More Than a Pretty Boy
One of actor Ashton Kutcher’s breakout roles was as Michael Kelso in That 70’s Show. He was not the brightest bulb in the pack, but he was a crucial part of the That 70’s Show storyline. When he decided his time on the show was up, the storyline was truly never quite the same.
What Happens in Vegas, Valentine’s Day, Jobs, and No Strings Attached. This guy even managed to take over for actor Charlie Sheen in the legendary sitcom, Two and a Half Men. He’s since been an advocate for many social causes and has starred in The Ranch. Now, he’s married to his onscreen girlfriend from this show, and they have two kids together. Just which co-star is it, though?
Laura Prepon Had an Active Career Following That 70’s Show
Laura Prepon played the neighbor girl, Donna Pinciotti, another crucial part of the gang. She was active in her career for the years following her time on That 70’s Show, and managed to have a relatively strong career in the years to follow. Her character was known for her signature red hair, which was later dyed for a movie she was working on.
Prepon made a splash in her later career. She was known widely for her prominent role in Orange is the New Black, where she played an important starring ensemble member, Alex. Since then, she has also created/published her own cookbook. She also married Ben Foster and has been raising their kiddo since 2017.
Wilmer Valderrama Continued to Steal Our Hearts on Screen
One of actor Wilmer Valderrama’s first roles was playing Fez, the sweet-talking foreign exchange student. Fez was always chasing after his dream girl, Jackie, and finally managed to snag her in the final season. His role as Fez is iconic and it is the primary role that people know him for. Luckily, he didn’t peak there.
Valderrama took his talents to the high points of NCIS, where he had a starring role. Valderrama went on to star in Raising Hope and even had a high-profile relationship that lasted several years with Demi Lovato. Though their relationship didn’t work out in the long run, he did still visit her in the hospital when she was recovering from an overdose. He is now the proud father of a daughter named Nakano Oceana Valderrama, who was born in 2021.
Mila Kunis Became the Star We All Anticipated Her to Be
Sure, she had to lie about her age to land the role that exposed her as one of Hollywood’s “ones to watch,” but she did it with only good intentions in mind. She played the legendary and sassy rich girl of the group, Jackie Burkart. She had an on-again, off-again relationship with Michael Kelso, played by Ashton Kutcher. This was a storyline that eventually came to life.
Her on-screen fling with her beau, Michael Kelso, translated to real-life when Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher began dating for real. They didn’t work out the first time, but they found their way back to each other. Now, they’re the proud parents of a daughter, Wyatt, and a son, Dimitri.
Topher Grace Later Played Some Questionable Roles
If you’ve made it this far into this article, then you have probably gathered that he had not been known as the easiest guy to get along with. He was even ousted from his starring role as Eric Forman because of how much the producers disliked him. Well, that’s not to say he doesn’t have talent. It turned out that he was actually heading for something much bigger.
Grace went on to star as Venom, the villain, in Spider-Man 3. He also appeared in Valentine’s Day and Interstellar. His career has only grown from there. He starred in the 2017 film War Machine alongside Brad Pitt and appeared on Workaholics and Drunk History. He also played real-life white supremacist David Duke in Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman.
Debra Jo Rupp Played the Matriarch of the Forman Household
Actress Debra Jo Rupp played Kitty Forman, who was the caring mother who treated the whole gang like her own children. She worked as a nurse during the day, and at every other moment, she was holding her family together and tending to everyone’s needs. She was always ready for a drink and certainly an enthusiast at adding a little nip of alcohol whenever she could.
She’s had a pretty active career in the years following her time on That 70’s Show. She appeared in a recurring role on Friends and recently had a crucial role in WandaVision. She also made guest appearances on The Ranch, Elementary, NCIS: Los Angeles, This Is Us, and Grey’s Anatomy.
Things Didn’t Go So Well for Laurie Forman
Actress Lisa Robin Kelly played the older, more sultry Forman sibling, Laurie. She was known amongst the gang for constant partying and bad behavior, though she was also known as the apple of her father Red’s eye. He saw her as unable to do no wrong, though the gang saw her as a devil.
This actress had a really bad run at life before it was cut too short. She was replaced in the final seasons of the show because of her struggles with addiction, horrifying all she came into contact with. She spent her days both on the show and beyond racking up arrests before unfortunately dying of an overdose in rehab.
Time Was On Their Side
Sometimes, the best love stories of all take some time to come to life. We were so happy to see the on-screen romance of Jackie and Kelso manifest into something real. What started as an onscreen romance between Kutcher and Kunis developed into one of the greatest love stories in Hollywood to date.
Back when they were playing their characters, Kunis and Kutcher actually hated each other in real life. Maybe it had to do with age, maybe they just didn’t really enjoy much of each other’s company… whatever it was, it sorted out. After Kutcher and his ex-wife Demi Moore split, Kunis reached out to “bury the hatchet.” Good call, girl… now she’s got a family out of it!
What Happened to Leo’s Spontaneous Disappearance?
Tommy Chong, a well-known marijuana enthusiast and activist, appeared on the show as Leo, a man who decided to give Hyde a chance and hire him with no experience. That was the beginning of a long friendship, and if you know anything about the gang and their basement activities, that was a mutually beneficial relationship. However, he mysteriously disappeared mid-series for a period… but why?
Chong had to take a brief hiatus from his role as Leo Chingkwake after he was arrested, not for marijuana possession, but for selling water pipes and bongs with his personal company, Nice Dreams. He abruptly disappeared from season 5 for a bit to serve time as part of a plea deal so his wife and son wouldn’t face persecution.
Don Stark’s Character, Bob Pinciotti, Was Always Cheerful
Actor Don Stark played Bob Pinciotti, Donna’s father. The Pinciotti family lived next door to the Formans and Bob was rarely seen in a bad mood. Well, he certainly mimicked the character he played in real life. His cheerful attitude really brought his crabby neighbor, Red, to regret calling him his best friend.
Don Stark certainly didn’t struggle to find work after his time on That 70’s Show came to a close. He went on to play Jules Podell in the Oscar-winning film, Green Book. He also held guest roles in several other notable shows, like Shameless, Rosewood, NCIS, The Mentalist, American Horror Story, The Mindy Project, and The Odd Couple.
Tanya Roberts Met a Troubling Fate
The former Charlie’s Angels star, Tanya Roberts, played Midge Pinciotti. Midge was Bob’s wife, known for being gorgeous and generally just entertaining. She loved her on-screen husband, but when her character abruptly up and left her family, fans were incredibly confused. Not only did they lose a beloved character, but they had a plot twist they were unprepared for.
Roberts left the show in the manner that she did because her real-life husband became terminally ill. She needed to stop everything and tend to him, like a good wife. Unfortunately, she collapsed while walking her dogs on Christmas Eve in 2020. She was admitted to the ICU before passing away the first week of January, 2021. Her representative made a huge mistake, though – he’d announced her passing days before it actually happened!
Red Forman Isn’t So Grumpy in Real Life
Actor Kurtwood Smith played the extremely grumpy Red Forman. He was the head of his household and truly had zero interest in putting up with any of the shenanigans that came from Eric and his friends. As it turns out, though, Red wasn’t the sourpuss he made himself out to be in real life.
In the years following That 70’s Show, he made tons of appearances on shows with other alumni from the old one. He appeared on The Ranch and Future Man, in addition to appearing in Amityville: The Awakening. Additionally, he appeared in several others, and will soon be reuniting with his TV wife, Debra Jo Rupp, to play an on-screen couple again.
Tommy Chong and Leo are the Same Exact Person
Tommy Chong played Leo, who appeared in the show as the resident hippy who gave a struggling kid a chance. He was loveable and generally oblivious. His time on the show was briefly interrupted when he was sent to jail as part of a plea deal for selling bongs and water pipes.
Chong’s main area of focus in life is marijuana advocacy, which is clear to anyone who knows him. He is still acting, and does a decent amount off advocacy work. He’s appeared in the Jay and Silent Bob reboot as well as some voiceover work, such as Zootopia. He’s even appeared as a pineapple on The Masked Singer!
Who Exactly Got Punk’d?
As Ashton Kutcher rose to fame, he started working on his own show, Punk’d, at the same time. That was when he took it upon himself to prank his castmates from this hit sitcom as part of his act. Believe it or not, he actually practiced some restraint and held back from pranking one specific castmate…
This photo is a bit misleading, because Danny Masterson was definitely a victim of the show. You guessed it, Topher Grace (amongst the other older cast members) never fell victim to the prank show. It was within good reason, though – Grace would probably have freaked out and gone absolutely ballistic!
What’s in Store for That 70’s Show?
We’re ecstatic to learn that this legendary sitcom is going to be having its very own sequel. This time, it will go by That 90’s Show and will certainly have a ton of grunge to go around. Their style is moving from Led Zepplin to Kurt Cobain, and the majority of the group will be returning for guest appearances.
We’re not sure what to expect, especially when Eric Forman dropped back into the show at the eleventh hour on the series finale. However, Danny Masterson is the only one of the original cast members who won’t be returning. He’s standing trial for three counts of rape, which Hyde would not be happy to hear.