I love watching TV. Given how many shows I already watch, I was convinced I would not be adding another one to the list…I was wrong. After watching the first 2 episodes of “Imaginary Mary” and laughing as much as I did, I will definitely be tuning in. I didn’t want to like but I couldn’t resist. It is funny!

While in the screening room, we also got the chance to sit down with Jenna Elfman and Stephen Schneider about their roles Imaginary Mary, along with Executive Producers David Guarascio & Doug Robinson. Given how funny Jenna and Stephen are (on screen and off), it was a fun conversation. You can check out 7 fun facts we learned during our interview below.

Jenna Elfman, Stephen Schneider and Leanette Fernandez

7 Imaginary Mary Fun Facts

  • The story of a single career oriented woman adapting to life with kids is inspired by stories of Doug Robinson’s life.
  • Even though Jenna Elfman had told her agent she did not want to work on a network show, but changed her mind after reading the script.  “I love that there’s the romantic part as the leading lady, and then there’s the fish out of water aspect with the kids because she’s just has no point of reference for dealing with children at all, and has no plan for it, and has a negative point of reference of childrearing. Then she’s super accomplished; she’s a woman on her own, which I liked. As an actor dealing with comedy, I have to now also deal with something that doesn’t exist but that I see, but that they don’t see, and then do physical comedy…it was just like, oh my god, that’s a lot of balls to juggle. I felt like I can take that on, and it felt like the next new level of challenge for me. And then everyone involved is so great, and I was like, it was really hard to say no to. I just couldn’t find a reason not to do it, so that’s how I came into it.”
  • Stephen jokingly shared that he had to audition for the part 20 times. He was actually late for his chemistry read with Jenna.
  • “…the physical aspect of Mary and Alice’s relationship in particular is something we keep building on through future episodes and try to make it a unique part of our show…” – Doug Robinson
  • Because they filmed in Vancouver, it allowed the cast to bond and their families to get to know each other (because they didn’t know anyone over there)
  • Patrick Osborne, the co-creator of the show, who’s also an animator, came up with the design of Mary and her look completely changed between the pilot and the series.
  • Finding the perfect voice for Mary was hard. “…the hardest thing, believe it or not, was actually finding the voice of Mary.  It took a really long time, and we just read a lot of people; we listened to a lot of people blind, and when we listened to Rachel Dratch, we didn’t know it was Rachel.  We just sort of just were listening to people, and watching into the picture, and then that all came together…That, that sounds great and it just was a really interesting process, unlike maybe a pilot that we’ve ever done.” – David Guarascio

“Imaginary Mary” stars Jenna Elfman as Alice, Stephen Schneider as Ben, Rachel Dratch as Mary (VO), Nicholas Coombe as Andy, Matreya Scarrwener as Dora and Erica Tremblay as Bunny.

Imaginary Mary Cast Photo
Photo credit: ABC/Bob D’Amico

“Imaginary Mary” makes its premiere TONIGHT at 9:30/8:30c on ABC with the episode, “The Mom Seal.”

“The Mom Seal” – When Ben asks Alice to help him with her first mom-like task to pick up Bunny from dance class, Mary quickly discovers the simplest parental tasks are fraught with difficulty. Afterwards, Ben is disappointed when Alice tells him she can’t help with the kids anymore, but things change when Andy enlists Alice’s help to overcome his fear of taking a driving test