the G-man wrote:
George Peppard was supposed to be the star of The A-Team, but it was Mr. T that took over the spotlight.
Add B.A. Baracus to the list.
Oh, very much so. He really became a mega-star practically overnight. From all accounts, Peppard never really got over having to play second fiddle on what he thought would be his show.
Nope. It's a matter of well known record that the show was created
for Mr. T:
- In 1982, NBC entertainment executive Brandon Tartikoff called Stephen J. Cannell and writing partner Frank Lupo in for a meeting about a proposed new action adventure series. Cannell had already had some television hits, most notably 'The Rockford Files' (1974-1980), and had an idea of a show he'd like to develop (something that would ultimately become 'Stingray' (1986)), but Tartikoff had a different concept for a series. Something he called 'The A-Team'. He gave Cannell and Lupo the assignment of developing a new show with the brief of "a cross between 'The Dirty Dozen' (1967) and 'The Magnificent Seven' (1960, a remake of 'The Seven Samurai' (1954))". He also guided them that it should have "vague elements of the 'Mad Max' movies".
Tartikoff gave Cannell and Lupo free reign over how to develop the premise, with just one guideline - "That Mr. T drives the truck". Mr. T had risen to stardom playing boxer James 'Clubber' Lang in 'Rocky III' released earlier that year, and now television was looking for a vehicle for him to appear in.
Peppard may have thought it was going to be his show, but he was the only one.
I never said it wasn't created for Mr. T; I said Peppard THOUGHT it would be his show. He had been in talks to be the star of a new show and had no idea what he was really walking into--hence his incredible dislike for Mr.T right from the start. He was supposed to "drive the truck" is hardly the description of the role of the lead character, but unfortunately for George, no one cared about that.