SAM MALONE (Actor: TED DANSON)
The glue that held Cheers together, Ted Danson’s Sam Malone was one of only three characters to appear in all 275 episodes.
A former baseball player for the Boston Red Sox, a battle with alcoholism led him to quit his sporting career and open a bar – where he was adored by his patrons and hero-worshipped for his skill at seducing beautiful women.
Danson, on the other hand, is much more of a one-woman man, having been married to actress Mary Steenburgen since 1995.
Post-Cheers, he has remained a fixture on television and has appeared in lead roles in a number of hits including Becker, Fargo, and CSI and currently stars in new comedy The Good Place in the US.
His film career never quite took off in the same way, although at the height of his Cheers fame he landed big roles in family comedies including Three Men and a Baby, Made in America and Getting Even With Dad.
Danson was nominated for 11 consecutive Emmy Awards for his role as Sam, finally winning Best Actor in a Comedy in 1990 and then again in 1993.
He has two children with second wife Cassandra Coates, whom he divorced in 1993, and is a pescetarian – meaning he eats fish but not other animals – and is a dedicated advocate of ocean conservation.
DIANE CHAMBERS (Actress: SHELLEY LONG)
Similarly to Danson, Shelley Long began her career with small roles in television movies and by guest starring in shows including MASH and The Love Boat.
But her role as know-it-all Diane made her an overnight star, particularly thanks to her flirty banter with Sam that left a nation begging for the two to get together.
After five seasons, however, a desire to spend more time with her family and fears over the show going ‘stale’ led Long to quit the role.
It was during her Cheers days that she made her biggest impact on the silver screen, earning a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actress in 1984’s Irreconcilable Differences. She also played the big screen version of Carol Brady, the matriarch of the Brady Bunch, in the mid-90s film versions.
More recently she has returned to guest starring on US television shows, notably on hit comedy Modern Family.
Long has been married twice and has one daughter, Juliana, with second husband, securities broker Bruce Tyson, whom she divorced in 2004.