Monk proved Tony Shalhoub was definitely leading man material

His first big show 'Stark Raving Mad' got cancelled because one studio executive utterly failed to see Shalhoub’s brilliance.

When Tony Shalhoub started shooting Monk, it was like stars finally aligned, placing him on a small studio lot where he knew some of the biggest TV stars had found their fame.

"Doing an hour show is really hard work," Shalhoub told The Dayton Daily News in 2003. "Long hours – [it’s] like making a small movie every week. We shoot on a wonderfully small lot in the heart of old Hollywood, where Desi and Lucy used to do their show and where they did The Dick Van Dyke Show and I Spy."

For Shalhoub, Monk came after an earlier, first series that he starred in, but was abruptly cancelled despite winning over both critics and audiences.

Stark Raving Mad was created by Steven Levitan, who created hit comedy shows like Just Shoot Me! and Modern FamilyIt cast Shalhoub as an offbeat writer across from Neil Patrick Harris as a neurotic book editor.  

Airing from 1999 to 2000, Stark Raving Mad got a lot of positive buzz in its first season, winning a People’s Choice Award for Favorite Television New Comedy Series, as well as prestigious industry awards for writing and casting.

So how come the show got axed? Levitan told the, Stark Raving Mad ended because one person who had a big say in the show somehow simply didn’t believe in Shalhoub. The whole interview, Levitan can barely restrain his incredulity at this bigwig’s bad read.

"We got picked up by one regime," Levitan said. "Another regime came in. Right before we were going to shoot the pilot, a person from the new regime said 'Listen, I know you’re about to shoot this pilot, but I’d like you to re-cast Tony Shalhoub.' And I’m like, 'Why?' Because I don’t think he’s the lead of a show."

Levitan strongly disagreed.

He said that on top of considering the future Monk star as a friend, he’d committed to Shalhoub at a time when Shalhoub had many competing offers, due to his popular character on Wings.

"I’m sticking with him," Levitan told the naysayer. "That’s it. He’s my choice."

Fifteen million people tuned in to laugh at Shalhoub’s antics on Stark Raving Mad, with the new sitcom ranking 19th in the country its first year on the power of Shalhoub’s performance as its title character.

Levitan hoped the popularity of the show would prove he’d chosen wisely, but he said for this particular bigwig, renewing the show wasn’t about ratings anymore. It became personal. He felt defied when the show wasn’t recast.

"I think that person just never got onboard," Levitan said.  "And subsequently cancelled that show at the end of that season. If someone were to go back and look at the numbers, they would be quite amazed that that show got cancelled."

Shalhoub bounced back quickly, featuring in films throughout 2001, until Monk came along, and if he hadn’t proved it with Stark Raving Mad, that’s when he secured his legacy as one of TV’s funniest character generators and ultimately all-time favorite leading men.

After his first year, he took home the Emmy for Monk, the mark of a major TV star making his entrance. Before the series ended, he’d add a couple more Emmys to his mantel.

In an interview with, Shalhoub described his character Monk as someone who "sort of looked at the world through a negative lens."

You might say the person responsible for cancelling Stark Raving Mad had the same problem, but we can’t complain because it gave us a quirky new kind of detective show and hours of incredible performances from the undeniably brilliant leading man Tony Shalhoub.

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Oldielover 35 months ago
Tony Shaloub is masterful in his role as Monk,but I still don't think it's the right time to put this show on MeTV,though.
tmac1951 Oldielover 35 months ago
I would wait till 2041
MW1018 35 months ago
Tony Shaloub’s performance in The Marvelous Mrs Maisel is so dramatically and comedically masterful! If you are a fan and haven’t seen MMM, please watch it (on Amazon Prime) You will be hooked! Also his performance in The Band’s Visit is wonderful. You can see clips of TBV on YouTube. So underrated! Never watched Monk but I will now!!!!
bumples 35 months ago
On Stark Raving Mad, Ian Stark (Shaloub) was the writer, Neil Patrick Harris was the neurotic of the best sitcoms...whoever that idiot exec was should've been made to walk the plank into shark-infested water...
Michael 35 months ago
One thing, "Monk" can be quite funny ay times.

"Lt Disher" is basically there for laughs. The episode where Monk gets arrested, and escapes, Natalie has a funny scene trying to hide why she has a drill, so she makes a smoothie with it.

Last night's episode on Peach Tv, Monk gets hypnotized and reverts to childhood, a funny episode.

And why are we seeing off-topic posts here?
LH Michael 35 months ago
Yeah that episode with Natalie making that smoothie with that drill is a scream… And Randy drinks it! So funny
texasluva 35 months ago
Congratsulations MrsPhilHarris for tackling our movie quiz. Now we can all watch this blockbuster movie- Bad Day At Black Rock. Congrats MPH

Bad Day At Black Rock (1955) 1 hr 21 min
Director: John Sturges
Spencer Tracy
Robert Ryan
Anne Francis
Walter Brennan
Ernest Borgnine
Lee Marvin
Dean Jagger
John Ericson
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texasluva Moody 35 months ago
I don't know why but as kids Friday nights we just had to punish ourselves with horror movies that came on late at night. I was an only child but had girl cousin I use to prank and tease. Also my friends down the block I would watch with them a lot too. We would have one channel for the scary movies but could pick up 2 others out of LA with those too. Not the greatest quality but You'd get lots of horror ones to scare the life out of you
texasluva Moody 35 months ago
Also look at the director of Bad Day At Black Rock. John Sturges. He made great movies. Some below.
Joe Kidd

1968Ice Station Zebra
1967Hour of the Gun
1965The Satan Bug
1963The Great Escape
1960The Magnificent Seven
1959Never So Few
1959Last Train from Gun Hill
1958The Old Man and the Sea
1958The Law and Jake Wade
1957Gunfight at the O.K. Corral
1955Bad Day at Black Rock
1953Escape from Fort Bravo
1953Fast Company
texasluva Moody 35 months ago
!!Wanted!! but preferred Alive
Those that wish to participate in the Weekly Movie Quiz.
Conversation as to what this movie might be
Winners name in MeTV Lights
Just plain ole fun
Let's Do it at: Who did it: Bugs Bunny or Jerry Mouse?
Friday @ 10:00 P.M CT
The Show Must Go On-Another knock down quizorama and entertainment.
One of our Bonus Movies will be: Bye-Bye Birdie.
texasluva Moody 35 months ago
I have had a resounding success in picking up some awesome movies to watch. Along with the Movie Quiz I will be bringing you from 1 to 2 extra blockbusters a week. Some you may have seen while others now having the chance to do so. This one is a true story played by Tom Hanks. More Riveting as it goes along.
Captain Phillips (2013) 2 hrs 14 min-Adventure, Biography, Crime
Director: Paul Greengrass
Tom Hanks
Barkhad Abdi
Barkhad Abdirahman
Catherine Keener
Faysal Ahmed
Michael Chernus

The true story of Captain Richard Phillips and the 2009 hijacking by Somali pirates of the U.S.-flagged MV Maersk Alabama, the first American cargo ship to be hijacked in two hundred years.
texasluva 35 months ago
Friday Night Movie Quiz 7/23/2021

Just when you think you seen it all. Yeah you've seen this too. One with such powerful actors that out of the top 8, 5 have Oscars. You get it all in this movie. Crime, Drama, Mystery along with hatred, suspicion. One mans task of delivering something while a small town of people look suspiciously at him. Car run off road, threats and a fuss in the diner which later leads to reasons and dramatic ending. This blockbuster need a name. let's hear it.

Classic movie scenes and trailers.
High Noon (1952) Official Trailer.

From Here To Eternity-Barfight scene. .

Giant (1956) - Fight Scene. .

Ben-Hur (1959) - Rowing of the Galley Slaves HD. .

Jason and the Argonauts (1963) Talos. .

Once upon a time in the West (1968) - Final duel (HD).

Bonus Movie Hidden Gem. Come and watch "Johnny Guitar"

Johnny Guitar (1954) 1 hr 50 min Drama, Western
Nicholas Ray
Joan Crawford
Sterling Hayden
Mercedes McCambridge
Scott Brady
Ward Bond
Ernest Borgnine
John Carradine
Royal Dano
Paul Fix

Yes! It's here to view. Batman: The Movie. Adventure, Comedy, Crime. Full screen and color.

Batman: The Movie (1966) 1 hr 45 min
Director: Leslie H. Martinson
Adam West
Burt Ward
Lee Meriwether
Cesar Romero
Burgess Meredith
Frank Gorshin
Alan Napier

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LoveMETV22 texasluva 35 months ago
I haven't counted but I think I have about 50, I do have Castaway but thanks for asking.
texasluva LaDolceVita 34 months ago

!!Wanted!! but preferred Alive
Those that wish to participate in the Weekly Movie Quiz.
Conversation as to what this movie might be
Winners name in MeTV Lights
Just plain ole fun
Let's Do it at: Did Clint Eastwood play these movie roles before or after Rawhide?
Friday @ 10:00 P.M CT
The Show Must Go On-Another knock down quizorama and entertainment.
One of our Bonus Movies will be: The Cassandra Crossing
texasluva LaDolceVita 34 months ago
If you like Clint Eastwood here is one he directed and played in just recently. Yep The Mule. What is old man Clint er (Earl Stone) thinking? I guess sometimes when aging we lose some of the most important brain matter (wits). The longer he doesn't think straight the deeper he gets into more problems. It should be called Problems of the Worst Kind. So go to work and roll up your selves and find a way out of this. Good luck.

The Mule (2018) 1 hr 56 min- Crime-Dram-Thriller

Director: Clint Eastwood
Clint Eastwood
Patrick L. Reyes
Cesar De León
Alison Eastwood
Jackie Prucha
Richard Herd
Dianne Wiest
Bradley Cooper
texasluva LaDolceVita 34 months ago
This is one of the better movies out there. If you have not seen it, do so. The Martian. Adventure, Drama, Sci-fi.

The Martian (2015) 2 hr 21 min
Director: Ridley Scott
Matt Damon
Jessica Chastain
Kristen Wiig
Kate Mara
Jeff Daniels
Michael Peña
Sean Bean
Benedict Wong
Donald Glover
tmac1951 35 months ago
Maybe the robots could put Chicago PD on, that premiered way way back in 2014, and like monk it’s on several channels
Moverfan tmac1951 35 months ago
So far, I've found Monk here on MeTV, Heroes & Icons and Hallmark Movies & Mysteries...poor Adrian must be hiding under his bed by now...
tmac1951 35 months ago
MeTV is run by computers and robots!!!!! No human being is employed there, it’s the only explanation that makes sense. Time for a computer reboot.
Moody tmac1951 35 months ago
No it's just millennials who think a show from early 2000s is classic tv. lol!
AllisonWunderland Moody 35 months ago
MrsPhilHarris 35 months ago
Boy there seems to be an story or quiz about Monk on a daily basis. At least it feels that way.
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MrsPhilHarris Michael 35 months ago
I guess they do. I guess it’s because I have no interest in the show I keep noticing all the stories and quizzes.
LH MrsPhilHarris 35 months ago
My thoughts EXACTLY. I love Monk but I’m tired of METV shoving him down our throats, as if to get us all on board. I’ll say it AGAIN. The show is GREAT, but it doesn’t belong HERE.
METV, stop trying to convince us. Monk is great, but we don’t need you to keep pushing him under our noses to validate your decision.
Whew! I'm so glad I have the Addams Family and the Munsters to watch instead 🤗👍
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