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October 9, 2015

Ask TV Squad: Filmed before a live studio audience?

by Keith McDuffee, posted Feb 21st 2006 11:14AM
happy daysThis week, Dave asks:

Just curious. How many shows are filmed before a live studio audience?

Not talk/reality/game shows - well, I guess just sitcoms.

Any idea? Want to see if anyone else has ideas?

Hmmm. An interesting question to ponder, for sure. I've asked my fellow TV Squaders to put their heads together and come up with a list. Hopefully we've covered them all.

Joel Keller was the first 'squader to report with the following:

Do they even specify that anymore? "Courting Alex is filmed in front of a live studio audience."  I never hear that.

Here's what I can think of:

Two and a Half Men
How I Met Your Mother
The King of Queens
Out of Practice
Courting Alex
According to Jim
George Lopez
Yes, Dear
Still Standing
What I Like About You
Those UPN and WB Sitcoms That No One Knows Exists (like Girlfriends, Love Inc, or whatever it's called)

Ryan Budke was quick to point out: "Actually, How I Met Your Mother is not filmed in front of an audience. It's filmed 'live' but then screened in front of an audience and that's how they get the laugh track. That's one of the reasons it 'flows' the way it does, at least, in my opinion...."

Any shows that didn't make the list? Of course, we're not counting the many game shows and reality shows on television today. But really, as Joel said, I don't recall hearing that tell-take, Happy Days-like announcement anymore.

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is the show reba still made and if it is, is it made in front of a live audience?

May 10 2007 at 11:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Joscar LA

Something many people don't know about Studio Audiences: While tickets are free, to make sure that the audience is always full (usually 200 to 250 people) the shows will hire "laughers". This is especially true of new shows and older shows that aren't as popular. This also insures that at least some people will stay for the whole taping which can run 5 to 6 hours.
I worked as a laugher on an episode of "George Lopez" last season, there were just 50 of us but the show had special make-up and stunts so it took 10 hours to film.
I also worked as an audience member for "Deal or No Deal" that took 12 hours. We stopped and started and did countless retakes and when Howie and the contestants were finished the audience stayed to get reaction shots from every angle. If I wasn't getting paid I would not have stayed.
The Price is Right and the late night talk shows all tape pretty much real time, meaning they don't stop, just pause for the commercials that are inserted, and the tapings are done in about an hour. You do have to wait in line for TPIR for about 8 hours though.

April 05 2007 at 4:21 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Just caught some of the CW's "Girlfriends" and found it pretty pathetic. It was clearly a show filmed on location and in studios without an audience, but it had this cheesy, out-of-place laugh track.

I mean, there's just NO WAY most of that show is shot in front of an audience, yet there they are, laughing when they're supposed to. It reminded me of "Scooby Doo" and "The Flintstones" having a laugh track- Impossible to be in front of a live audience!!!

October 01 2006 at 5:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Just a quick question...What was the first tv sho filmed before a live studio audience?

September 10 2006 at 11:14 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
paul shibley

who has starred or co-starred in the most t.v. shows.
i have tried to find this answer for years. please help

May 05 2006 at 8:49 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

We are wondering if the house used for Yes, Dear is the same house that was used to film Beverly Hills 90210? We have looked everywhere but cannot find a picture of the Yes, Dear house.

April 26 2006 at 1:35 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Thirty-five years ago or so, many game shows were still taped in NYC, at 30 Rockefeller Plaza. (NBC)
At 9:00 AM weekdays any tickets remaining for that days tapings were given out on a first come first served basis. You could also get standby tickets for the Tonight Show which was also still in NYC.

As a high-school student, this was the best place in NYC to cut school. Free tickets to game shows, like the original Jeopardy with Art Fleming, Match Game with Gene Rayburn and Concentration with Hugh Downs. Plus many other shows including an AM talk show with Joan Rivers. You only had to worry about the camera shooting the audience (very rare) so your mother did not see you weeks later when the show was telecast.
Most importantly was the oath of secrecy. If you discovered the handing out of tickets you could not spread the word and increase the competition from other school cutting kids.
Free, entertaining, warm and dry; and if you were really lucky Johnny Olsen would give you a dollar during the audience warm-up.

April 25 2006 at 12:48 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Speaking of live audiences and laugh tracks: I recently caught David Spade's Showbiz Show on Comedy Central. While there is an audience, the show is heavily sweetened with a laugh track. And it sounds like they're using tracks from a 70's sitcom. Rather pathetic.

April 15 2006 at 3:21 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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