16 Behind-the-Scenes Facts About Schitt's Creek and Its Beloved Cast
With Schitt's Creek coming to an end in mere days, we've been diving into interviews with the cast to feed our obsession with the fish-out-of-water sitcom. Focusing on love and family, the show has captured fans with its ability to appeal to anyone and everyone. Over time, the series has only become bigger, scoring four Primetime Emmy nominations in 2019. While we mourn its pending conclusion, we've gathered 16 behind-the-scenes facts you probably didn't know. What is Eugene Levy's biggest pet peeve? Is the show a family affair? Where is it filmed? Find out ahead.
Eugene Levy Came Up With the Show Title
The name of the town came from Eugene, who thought of it while having dinner with friends. "I think it was one of those boozy conversations you have over a dinner where they started talking about a town where there would be, like, Schitt Hardware and Schitt whatever it is," Daniel Levy told Entertainment Weekly. During Eugene and Daniel's research on various ways people lost their fortunes, they found a few stories of people buying towns and then becoming bankrupt because of them. "We thought, well, what if this family, as a joke for the son's 16th birthday, found this town called Schitt's Creek, bought it as a joke because of the name and then ended up having to live there?" Daniel told Out.
3 Actors on the Show Are Related
You probably already know that Eugene and Daniel, aka Johnny and David Rose, are real-life father and son! But did you know that Daniel's sister, Sarah Levy, plays diner waitress Twyla Sands? No, Annie Murphy (aka Alexis) isn't part of the Levy family IRL.
A Production Company Was Formed to Create Schitt's Creek
In 2013, Daniel and Eugene founded their own production company with principals Andrew Barnsley and Fred Levy in order to produce Schitt's Creek. The company is called Not a Real Company Productions.
The Show Is Filmed in Canada
Schitt's Creek films in Goodwood, Ontario, which is a small village with a population of about 600. "It's such a nice sense of community too. When you go to that small town for a month and a half when all our sets our up, it literally feels like you are walking through Schitt's Creek," Sarah told CBC News.
Residents are quite supportive and proud of the cast and crew. "They would set up their lawn chairs on their front lawns and watch us shoot across the street," Eugene said at 93Y Talks. "They would stand around the monitors in the director's booth and actually comment . . . 'You sure you want to keep this?'"
The minor-league baseball team there "actually changed their name from the Goodwood Bears to the Schitt's Creek Bears for an entire month," Eugene told NPR.
Catherine O'Hara Laughed the Hardest When Shooting "Allez-Vous"
During the episode "Allez-Vous" in season one, Moira and David try to sell cosmetics to the locals. "Catherine started the scene and could not look at [Daniel] without laughing," Eugene said on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. During the scene, David tried testing out a self-tanner which made him look "a goldfish caught in the headlights," O'Hara said on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.
Daniel Chose to End Schitt's Creek
"It's good to have warm memories in people's minds," he said on the Today show. "That's what is going to live on longer than if we overstay our welcome." Eugene agreed, adding that "everything was naturally winding down . . . When you push it past that point of when everything just wraps up the way it should, you get into the law of diminishing returns."
Annie Murphy Came Up With Alexis's, Er, Unique Voice
Name a more iconic line than: "Ew, David!" — we'll wait. Murphy perfected her accent by watching "a lot of YouTube clips of certain reality shows about certain rich famous people," she told Vulture.
There's Improv, but Not as Much as You Might Expect
Despite O'Hara and Eugene Levy's background as seasoned improv actors, the cast doesn't improv as much as you may assume. "It is completely a scripted show, but we do an awful lot of playing around with the lines when we get to the set," Eugene told The Hollywood Reporter. "What looked good on paper doesn't always play when you hear the words out loud. So, we do change things until they end up sounding right."
Eugene Hates Getting His Hair Wet
Eugene's biggest pet peeve he had to overcome on set was getting his hair soaked. In the episode "The Drip" in season one, a leak in the motel room ceiling drips on top of Johnny. "Nothing comes close to the hair," Eugene said on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.
Murphy's First Experience in LA Was Interesting
When she moved to Los Angeles for the first time at age 22, Murphy found a stranger to live with on Craigslist. After showing up to the apartment, she was informed that said stranger would be receiving the funds to do a film soon; therefore, she would be sleeping in her closet off the living room in order to get into character as an American soldier in Afghanistan during the duration of Murphy's stay. In the closet, "there was a little cot set up, and the walls were lined, like in The Shining, with Post-in notes, like character notes, as far as the eye could see," Murphy said on The Ellen DeGeneres Show.
The Town's Location Is Purposefully Vague
Schitt's Creek is wherever fans think it should be. "We honestly wanted the focus of the show to be on the town, and if you put it in a country with real states or put it in a country with real provinces, then things become tangible . . . it kind of diffuses the focus to me," Eugene said at 92Y Talks. "Setting the show in a place where you don't care about where they are really focuses on the isolation of where that place is," Daniel said at 92Y Talks.
Noah Reid Created the Acoustic Cover of "Simply the Best"
Reid, who plays Patrick, came up with the arrangement for the slow, acoustic cover of "Simply the Best" from season four. Because Tina Turner's version is so fast-faced, a lot of people don't think about the lyrics. "We wanted it to be a song that was unexpected, that felt like it could be a fun spin on something that people would sing at an open-mic night," Daniel told GQ. "And Noah took the mandate — 'This is the song. Make it slow. Make it beautiful' — and came up with that incredible cover."
Daniel's First Money-Making Gig Was Gap Kids
Daniel made his first dollar at a clothing retail company. "My parents dropped me off in front of a Gap Kids and said very clearly, 'Do not come home without a job application,'" Daniel said on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.
Murphy Initially Auditioned For the Role of Stevie
Abby Elliott (Chris Elliott's daughter) played Alexis in the Schitt's Creek pilot; however, after the show was being shopped around, she was no longer available for the role, Murphy told Vulture. "I auditioned for Alexis and I got a call from Dan [Levy] after my first audition, asking me to also audition for Stevie," she said. "So I ended up testing for both of those ladies."
Eugene had a hard time envisioning Murphy as Alexis because of Murphy being a natural brunette. "Eugene was having a really, really hard time wrapping his head around the fact that Alexis is blonde and Annie Murphy is brunette," Murphy told Vulture. "He couldn't quite get there, so Dan had to tape pictures of blonde hair on my picture. It finally got through to him, thank goodness."
Daniel and Reid Drank Together Before Filming the Lip-Syncing Scene
Daniel was extremely nervous to lip sync the cover of "Simply the Best" in the episode "The Olive Branch" in season four. "That was probably the scariest scene I've ever shot in my life. I'm terrible at memorizing lyrics, and I don't dance, and I don't perform like that ever," he told GQ. "So that was a panic the night before. And then Noah and I shared a bottle of Prosecco at lunch, and came back from lunch, and that's what it was. I would like to say it was method. Even though my character isn't an alcoholic, I felt like he would've done something similar to that to ease himself into it."