Zap 2 It - ABC To Air 'Facts Of Life' Reunion
Date: Tue, Aug 14, 2001 01:58 AM PDT.

LOS ANGELES ( - Mrs. Garrett and the girls will “take the good” and “take the bad” once again when production begins in Toronto for the as-yet-untitled “Facts of Life” reunion special. According to Daily Variety, original cast members Charlotte Rae (Mrs. Garrett), Mindy Cohn (Natalie), Kim Fields (Tootie) and Lisa Whelchel (Blair) will all reprise their characters from the hit series that ran on NBC from 1979 to 1988. Nancy McKeon, who played tomboy Jo, remains unsigned for a possible cameo. George Clooney, who portrayed George the handyman during the show’s 1985-86 season, has not been approached.

The two-hour movie for ABC will center on Natalie, who asks the girls to return to Peekskill, N.Y. after receiving two different marriage proposals. Writers Max Enscoe, Annie deYoung, Kevin Hench (``Kiss My Act'') and Heather Juergensen were faced with the challenge of figuring out what life paths each character would take. Natalie is now a producer for CNN. Mrs. Garrett, who left the show in 1986 after getting married and moving away, was written to have joined the Peace Corps and became a widow during the show’s absence. Garrett returns to the States via cruise ship, where she meets a new love interest. Tootie has become a Hollywood-based talk show host and the single mother of a 10-year-old girl. Blair owns Warner Enterprises, which includes a stable of hotels, and is married without children. Jo’s husband Rick and daughter attend the reunion in Jo’s absence, while inside jokes are made in reference to Clooney and Molly Ringwald, who played one of the girls during the show’s first season.

The ``Facts of Life'' reunion will air sometime next season in the ``Wonderful World of Disney'' time slot. Production begins September 10.

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