Arnold the pig almost had his own show after Green Acres
The real star of 'Green Acres' was almost the star of his own show, too!
The pampered pig from Green Acres, Arnold Ziffel, was a favorite for many fans. With so much star power packed into a pig, he proved he was great at stealing the show.
Arnold the pig was actually played by four different pigs during the show's run from 1965 to 1971. The first Arnold the pig was a male, and the next three were female.
Arnold's former contract called for a stand-in special, star billing, a light work schedule and deluxe accommodations - by animal standards, of course. The pig got the star treatment both on and off set.
Arnold Ziffel wasn't a normal pig by any means. He was even trained to switch the TV on and off as he desired while he watched his favorite Western movies on TV. In 1965, Arnold's salary rose to $250 a day, a respectable amount even by human standards.
At one point, Green Acres producer Jay Sommers and CBS Studios wanted Arnold to have his own spin-off show. It wasn't uncommon for stars of classic shows to have their own spin-off shows, but it was unheard of for a pig to get one.
The spin-off would have been called Arnold. The show would have followed Arnold's journey after he inherits $80 million in trust.
In a 1969 interview with The Indianapolis Star, Arnold's manager talked about the pig's success. (Yes, that's right, the pig had a manager.)
"Arnold's destined for bigger things," Frank Inn explained. "He's been featured on Green Acres since 1965, and now producer Jay Sommers is talking about him starring in a show of his own. He's sure Arnold could carry it off, too."
Arnold's success happened pretty quickly. The pig started receiving many pieces of fan mail from both kids and adults all over the country. There were even fan clubs made in support of the famous pig.
Although Arnold may never have had his own series, we love to imagine a world where he did. Despite the pig not receiving his own series, fans can rest assured that all four pigs had a life filled with star treatment, endless support and.. all the food they could want.
"When the gang at the studio keeps pampering him, giving him parts of their lunch... then all he wants to do the rest of the afternoon is lie down in the corner and snooze," Inn said.