I Dream of Jeannie is a 1960s American sitcom with a fantasy premise. The show starred Barbara Eden as a 2000-year-old genie, and Larry Hagman as an astronaut who becomes her master, with whom she falls in love and eventually marries. Produced by Screen Gems, the show originally aired from September 1965 to May 1970 with new episodes, and through September 1970 with season repeats, on NBC. The show ran for five seasons and produced 139 episodes. The first season consisted of 30 episodes filmed in black and white. The other 109 episodes were filmed in color. The show has continued to air in reruns ever since.
The series was created and produced by Sidney Sheldon in response to the great success of rival network ABC's Bewitched series, which had debuted in 1964 as the second most watched program in the United States. Sheldon, inspired by the movie The Brass Bottle, which had starred Tony Randall, Barbara Eden, and Burl Ives as the genie Fakrash, came up with the idea for a beautiful female genie. Both I Dream of Jeannie and Bewitched were Screen Gems productions. The show debuted at 8:00 pm (EDT), Saturday, September 18, 1965, on NBC.
When casting was opened for the role of Jeannie, Sidney Sheldon could not find an actress who could play the role the way that he had written it. He did have one specific rule: he did not want a blonde genie because there would be too much similarity with the blonde witch on Bewitched. However, after many unsuccessful auditions, he called Barbara Eden's agent.
In most episodes, Eden wears her revealing "Jeannie" costume (created by veteran Hollywood costume designer Gwen Wakeling). Censors allowed her to be depicted living in a house with an unmarried man (because early episodes made it plain that she slept in her bottle), but would not permit Eden's navel to be seen, although it was briefly shown in season four episodes "The Case of My Vanishing Master, Part 2" and "Around the Moon in 80 Blinks", third season episode "Meet My Master's Mother", and season five's "Mrs. Djinn-Djinn". The makers of the series were also presented with the problem of filming around Eden's real-life pregnancy during the ...
When NBC began telecasting most of its prime time television programs in color in the fall of 1965, Jeannie was the one of two regular programs on NBC that remained in black and white, in this case because of the special photographic effects employed to achieve Jeannie's magic. By the second season, however, further work had been done on techniques to create the visual effects in color, necessary because by 1966 all US prime time series were being made in color.
Jeannie uses her magic powers to thwart her sister, Jeannie II, who has designs on Major Nelson.
Col. Nelson is on a long-term, top-secret space mission. Jeannie cannot bring him home (temporarily) to hear their son's important academic presentation without knowing exactly where he is in the first place. The general in charge of the mission won't reveal anything. Things are further complicated when Jeannie's sister (Jeannie II) reminds Sham-Ir, the head of the genies, that a genie on Earth cannot go more than 3 months without an earthly master. (Col. Nelson is no longer Earthly, being in space.) Sham-Ir give Jeannie I a fortnight (14 days) to either find Col. Nelson or get a new master, a single male. (Col. Healy can't help, since he's n...
A giant alligator runs riot in a small town with a lake connected to a sewer/drainage system. Typical plot; nobody believes the sightings until lots of people have been killed.