When the Addams family first appeared in the pages of “The New Yorker,” none of the family members had any names. And they continued to not have any names, amazingly, for almost thirty years until the television show was in development. Charles Addams suggested Repelli for the father and Pubert for the son.
Repelli didn’t make the cut because the final decision was up to John Astin, but Pubert was denied because it sounded too dirty. And you know what? They’re right; it does sound dirty. Still, the name got used in the nineties for the third Addams child, who sports a small mustache. It still sounds dirty, but less so than it would have back then.
The Animated Addams
A number of different animated versions of this spooky family have been released. While the first time they appeared in animated form was with the Scooby gang, they got their own show a year later, in 1973. This show featured actors from the live-action show reprising their roles.
Another version came out in 1992 following the success of the first movie, which generally brought on new actors except for John Astin as Gomez. In 2019, an animated movie came out featuring the voices of Oscar Isaac, Charlize Theron, Chloe Grace Moretz, Finn Wolfhard, and other notable names. This included Snoop Dogg, who plays Cousin Itt. A straight-to-DVD sequel came out in 2021.
A Totally Different Cast
The first Addams Family movie could have looked very different if the original director had stayed on the project. That original director was none other than Tim Burton, and the project was so perfect for him that it's almost stereotypical. Cher was interested in playing the role of Morticia, but the producers were focused on getting Anjelica Huston from the very beginning.
Actors Danny DeVito and Bob Hoskins were both offered the part of Uncle Fester, but both turned it down. Anthony Hopkins was also offered the role of Fester, but he decided to turn it down in order to play Hannibal Lecter in “Silence of the Lambs.” We think that was the right choice.
Kept Out of the Soundtrack
None other than Michael Jackson was contracted to write a song for the “Addams Family Values” in 1993, but a few different things kept him out of the finished product. He did write and record the song “It Is Scary,” but contract issues, as well as some hem-hem allegations at the time, eventually got the producers to drop the song.
There was going to be a video to accompany a song, but that never even got made. However, the song eventually made it onto Jackson's 1997 album “Blood on the Dance Floor: History in the Mix,” as well as in his 1996 movie “Ghosts.”
Cousin Itt Was a Little Guy
If you've ever watched the television show from the sixties, you might have seen the diminutive Cousin Itt and wondered how he could have been so short. Was it creative camera angles? Did they get a child to dress up in a hair costume?
Well, it turns out that Cousin Itt was played by an Italian actor named Felix Silla, whose full height was a mere three feet, ten inches. Silla, who sometimes went as Felix Cilla, also played the robot Twiki in “Buck Rogers in the 25th Century.” You've also probably seen his work as an Ewok in “Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi.”