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Ferris Bueller (TV series)

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Ferris Bueller
Opening title sequence
Based onFerris Bueller's Day Off
by John Hughes
Developed byJohn Masius
ComposerGlenn A. Jordan
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons1
No. of episodes13
Executive producerJohn Masius
  • Michael J. Di Gaetano
  • Lawrence Gay
  • Pamela Grant
  • Frank Pace
CinematographyStephen C. Confer
  • Darryl Bates
  • Robert Bramwell
Camera setupSingle-camera
Running time30 minutes
Production companies
Original release
ReleaseAugust 23, 1990 (1990-08-23) –
August 11, 1991 (1991-08-11)

Ferris Bueller is an American sitcom television series based on the 1986 John Hughes film Ferris Bueller's Day Off. The show stars Charlie Schlatter in the title role. The series debuted on August 23, 1990, on NBC and was cancelled within its first season, a few months after its debut with only 13 episodes aired, due to its poor reception. The show was produced by Maysh, Ltd. Productions in association with Paramount Television.[1] Hughes was not involved in the show's production.[2]


Though based on the film, the series was not a canon continuation; rather it was set up to portray itself as being the "real life" situations upon which the film was loosely based. In the pilot episode, Ferris (Schlatter) refers to the film and expresses his displeasure at Matthew Broderick portraying him, even going as far as destroying a life-size cardboard cutout of Broderick with a chainsaw.[3][4] However, no further references to the film within the series' continuity would be made after this. As in the film, the series focused on Ferris Bueller and his high school experiences at Ocean Park High, including dealing with his best friend Cameron (Brandon Douglas), love interest Sloan (Ami Dolenz), and sister Jeannie (Jennifer Aniston).

Although the film was set in Chicago, the series was set in Santa Monica. Like the film, Ferris is liked by everyone as the "cool guy on campus." He is extremely popular, suave, and quick-witted and is a master of ceremonies who often breaks the fourth wall. Cameron is still a depressive neurotic who, through Ferris, is able to loosen up occasionally. Sloan is portrayed slightly different in that she is not completely wrapped around Ferris' finger and has to be won over at times. Ed Rooney is the primary antagonist and always out to get Ferris but usually ends up foiled or humiliated. His secretary, Grace, is not a wise-cracking sarcastic, but a passive pushover with an unreciprocated crush on Ed. Jeannie is constantly at odds with Ferris and his being favored by all. Though she can be antagonistic, she has proven not all bad, albeit begrudgingly. In the film, Mr. and Mrs. Bueller's names are Katie and Tom, but in the series, they are Barbara and Bill; also, Ferris is a junior and Jeannie is a senior as opposed to the other way around in the movie.


The main cast



  • Jeff Maynard as Arthur Petrelli
  • Jerry Tullos as Mr. Rickets
  • David Glasser as Dork
  • Brandon Rane as Wimp
  • Chris Claridge as Student #2/Surfer/Tim
  • Bojesse Christopher as Greaser
  • Jim DeMarse as Mr. Prescott/Mr. Tenser



Season 1 (1990–91)[edit]

No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
1"Pilot"Jonathan LynnJohn MasiusAugust 23, 1990 (1990-08-23)
The first day of Ferris Bueller's junior year begins at Ocean Bay High School. He has some old issues to deal with such as his arch nemesis Principal Rooney. That will have to wait as he has the new issue of a beautiful transfer student named Sloan.
2"Behind Every Dirtbag"Bill BixbyMichael J. Digaetano & Lawrence GaySeptember 17, 1990 (1990-09-17)
Principal Rooney handpicks a candidate for student-body president and prohibits Ferris from running. Ferris does the next best thing and prepares his own candidate. His choice is a boy named Shred who dislikes Principal Rooney as much as he does. However, when Sloan gets to know Shred, she remakes his image from a greaser into a well-dressed preppy, causing Ferris to worry she is interested in him more than just leadership.
3"Custodian of the People"Beth Rooney HillshaferRob UlinSeptember 24, 1990 (1990-09-24)
Ferris and Sloan have hit a bump in the road in their new relationship. Ferris makes the mistake of being unsupportive of Sloan's ambition of becoming a dancer. Ferris is also at odds again with Principal Rooney as he convinces Lou, the new janitor, to impersonate the new dean of students, a former Marine drill Sergeant.
4"Without You I'm Nothing"Steve DubinSteve PepoonOctober 1, 1990 (1990-10-01)
Cameron feels trapped in Ferris's shadow. Ferris attempts to help his friend by suggesting to him that he should do something he will be remembered for. Cameron takes his advice by pulling a dangerous stunt.
5"Between a Rock and Rooney's Place"James Whitmore Jr.Paul B. PriceOctober 8, 1990 (1990-10-08)
Sloan wants to throw a small and peaceful surprise party for Cameron's birthday. Ferris has other plans and they include many people, a rapper and Principal Rooney's house.
6"A Dog and His Boy"Victor LoblJohn MasiusOctober 15, 1990 (1990-10-15)
Ferris is still trying to win Sloan's love so when she asks him to watch the school mascot he agrees. Principal Rooney sees the dog with Ferris and gets rid of it by calling the dogcatcher.
7"Ferris Bueller Can't Win"Steve DubinMary ConleyOctober 22, 1990 (1990-10-22)
The San Diego Chicken makes an appearance at Ocean Bay High School, which kicks off a run of bad luck for Ferris. He gets in a fight with Sloan and Cameron accidentally destroys his homework. To top it all off an earthquake hits while he is riding in an elevator with his archenemy Principal Rooney, trapping them both.
8"Sloan Again, Naturally"Andy TennantKathy SlevinNovember 5, 1990 (1990-11-05)
Ferris and Jeannie set their differences aside and work together to ruin a date between Sloan and the new exchange student from Italy. Ferris wants Sloan back and Jeannie wants the exchange student for herself.
9"Scenes from a Grandma"Arlene SanfordMichael J. Digaetano & Lawrence Gay & Steve Pepoon & Rob UlinNovember 12, 1990 (1990-11-12)
Ferris' nosy, know-it-all grandmother wants to turn her two-week visit into a permanent stay, and gets a job as a counselor at his school.
10"Stand-In Deliver"Bethany RooneyAndy TennantNovember 26, 1990 (1990-11-26)
The father of Cameron's new girlfriend Ann forbids Cameron from seeing her. Ferris poses as her boyfriend to get past her father. Complications arise when Cameron's girlfriend falls for Ferris.
11"Baby You Can't Drive My Car"Bill BixbySteve PepoonDecember 3, 1990 (1990-12-03)
Ferris gets the car of his dreams for his birthday, a 1962 Chevy Corvette. His dreams turn into nightmares when he and Cameron become concerned that the car is haunted. Ferris returns to talk to the car salesman, Mr. McFarland, and discovers that Mr. McFarland has been dead for over 20 years.
12"Grace Under Pressure"Victor LoblRob UlinDecember 16, 1990 (1990-12-16)
Principal Rooney cancels "Beach Day" when he hears that Superintendent Weldon has planned an inspection. Ferris has been looking forward to the event and decides to secretly go ahead with the plans.
13"A Night in the Life"Christopher T. WelchEvan SmithAugust 11, 1991 (1991-08-11)
Ferris and Cameron survive an eventful night while trying to churn out an important class paper.

Reception and cancellation[edit]

Compared to the film, the show received mostly negative reviews from critics. It also suffered from comparisons to another series, Parker Lewis Can't Lose, which proved to be more successful when it came to ratings, lasting for three seasons. Ratings for a Ferris "sneak preview" were strong, but ratings for the actual series were much lower.[5] In an October 5, 1990 interview, NBC executive Warren Littlefield said the show was already in danger of cancellation, and could be pulled from the schedule as soon as the ratings for episode 4 came in.[6] The series was cancelled due to poor viewership and low ratings after one season, airing a total of thirteen episodes.[7][8]


  1. ^ Company credits for Ferris Bueller at IMDb Edit this at Wikidata. Retrieved 2017-07-29.
  2. ^ Carter, Bill (December 17, 1990). "Hear About a Film That Became A Hit TV Series? You're Not Alone". The New York Times (online ed.). Retrieved 2017-07-29.
  3. ^ Shales, Tom (1990-08-23). "'Ferris Bueller's' Off Day; On NBC, a Lame Take on a Movie". Washington Post. Archived from the original on 2013-05-20. Retrieved 2008-12-01.
  4. ^ Storm, Jonathan (1990-08-23). "High School Comedy Strictly Sophomoric In The NBC Version, 'Ferris Bueller' Has An Off Day". The Philadelphia Inquirer.
  5. ^ "Ferris Bueller - Television Obscurities". Television Obscurities. Retrieved 2018-05-31.
  6. ^ "If at first you don't succeed...new season cancellations and reshufflings began" (PDF). Broadcasting. October 8, 1990. Retrieved January 8, 2024.
  7. ^ "Jennifer Aniston: Life and Career: 1990's CAREER". Jennifer Aniston. Retrieved 2018-05-31.
  8. ^ TV.com. "Ferris Bueller". TV.com. Retrieved 2018-05-31.

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