PASADENA, CA–Fox has a busy day planned for their TCA press tour session (including a panel with the judges from some show called American Idol), so it’s important to start the day off right with a hearty breakfast.
The generous folks at Fox provided one to promote their comedy Raising Hope, which has just earned a second season pickup. The cast worked the hotel lobby where the food was at. Cloris Leachman, who plays the loopy granny on the sitcom, says she hasn’t chickened out on anything executive producer Greg Garcia has asked her to do–yet.

Garcia: off the cuff

Leachman has worked more TV shows than anybody but maybe Ed Asner. She says she shot pilots with Mort Sahl and even Shirley Temple. “I played her mother, which was a laugh since I was only three years older than she was,” says Leachman, still best known for The Mary Tyler Moore Show as well as the spinoff featuring her character, Phyllis.

Spotting my Canadian affiliation, she also had memories of shooting a TV-movie with Dick van Dyke in Toronto back in the mid-’80s. Breakfast with Les and Bess, which also starred Shaun Cassidy, was about a pair of morning show radio hosts. She also performed on stage in Showboat in Toronto–twice.
Speaking of Van Dyke, he turned down a gig Leachman accepted–dancing on Dancing with the Stars. At 84, the old song and dance man knows his limits.
The Raising Hope cast gathered outside the Langham hotel for a photo op with the Scooby-Do-like Ford van used on the series. Peeking inside, you can see the shag rug in the back where the baby from the show was conceived. Sweet.
Garcia showed off a pair of cuff links his wife gave him that are in the shape of the van. “My wife will be happy these are getting come coverage in Canada,” he cracked.

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