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By Nellie Andreeva
The Simpsons will get a surprise visit for their 300th show from old neighbors on the Fox schedule – the Bundys.
Fox will air a one-hour “Married… with Children” reunion special Feb. 16, the night “The Simpsons” marks its 300th episode milestone.
The first get-together of the cast of Fox’s first hit series from Sony Picture Television will coincide with the Feb. 4 release of one of two “Married… with Children: The Most Outrageous Episodes” DVDs by Columbia TriStar Home Entertainment. Five episodes will be featured on each DVD, including the never-seen-on-TV original uncut version of the infamous “Lost Episode,” which will be part of the first volume.
The entire cast of “Married… with Children” gathered together in a replica of the Bundys’ ramshackle living room for the taping of the reunion over the weekend, including stars Ed O’Neill, Katey Sagal, Christina Applegate and David Faustino.
The special will air in its old Sunday 9 p.m. start time. It will be part of what Fox entertainment president Gail Berman called “an extraordinary night of television.” Revved up by the Daytona 500 in the afternoon, Fox’s primetime lineup will feature a special episode of “King of the Hill” with Jennifer Aniston at 7 p.m. and three back-to-back original “Simpsons,” including No. 300 at 8 p.m., leading into the “Married… with Children” special.
Guest stars on the 300th “Simpsons” will include skateboard star Tony Hawk and rock band Blink 182.
” ‘Married… with Children’ was an extraordinary television show for its time,” Fox entertainment president Gail Berman said. “It broke all rules for TV family comedies, it put the network on the map. In tandem with ‘The Simpsons,’ it created a wonderful Sunday comedy block, and I think it’s time to bring the Bundys and the Simpsons back together.”
Rocket Science Laboratories (Fox’s “Temptation Island,” “Joe Millionaire”) is producing the special with the company’s Chris Cowan and Jean-Michel Michenaud executive producing.
” ‘Married… with Children’ is one of the most important assets we’ve ever owned, and we couldn’t be more proud of it,” said Russ Krasnoff, president of programming and production at SPT. “When Fox said they wanted to do (the special), and it just happened to coincide with the timing of when we were going to do a DVD release, it seemed like a real good reason to do both to celebrate the show and as well to help market the DVD.”
The special will feature references to the DVD, he said.
There have been two ideas – of a “Married… with Children” TV movie and a reunion special – percolating at Fox for quite some time. While “the movie seemed more and more difficult as many of the cast have gone on to do other projects, and it was hard to get everyone’s schedules together,” the network was finally been able to get all of the actors together, Berman said.
“Married… with Children” bowed out in 1997 after 10 years on the air.