The Pilot


November 3, 1993

Written by

Prudence Fraser (writer)
Robert Sternin (writer)
Peter Marc Jacobson (writer/story)
Fran Drescher (story)

Directed by

Lee Shallat-Chemel

Next Episode

Smoke Gets in Your Lies

Fran Fine, the Jewish girl from Flushing, Queens, worked at the bridal shop of her fiancé, Danny. When she was expecting a ring on her finger, she got a foot on her butt. Unemployed, she became a door-to-door cosmetic seller, and that's when she knocked on the Sheffields residence. Maxwell Sheffield, a successful Broadway producer, needed a nanny for the weekend and by lack of better options hired Fran. She quickly made a big impact on his three children's lives, but after an argument with Mr. Sheffield she was fired. Seeing that Fran Fine was just what he needed in his life, Mr. Sheffield hired her back. This time, for good.

Cast Edit

Main Cast Edit

Recurring Cast Edit

Guest Cast Edit

  • Jonathan Penner as Danny Imperiali
  • James Marsden as Eddie
  • Ray Johnson as Piano Player
  • Curtis Hood as Man

Quotes and Trivia Edit


Fran: Oh, please! I come from Flushing. There is nothing these kids can throw at me that I haven't seen before. Except maybe their trust funds

Niles: Miss Babcock for you, sir.
Maxwell: Thank you Niles, I'll take her in the library.
Niles: Miss Babcock loves to be taken in the library.

Brighton: I hate her.
Maxwell: No Brighton, let's not be hasty.
Fran: Yeah, I haven't even sung 'Climb Ev'ry Mountain' yet.

(Fran walks down stairs wearing red sparkly dress)
C.C.: Who is that?
Maxwell: That's the nanny.
Fran: You like? I borrowed from my cousin, Miss Long Island 1986.
Niles: A very good year!

Fran: (points to Maggie) This one's got no personality, (points to Gracie) this one's got multiple personalities and Brighton... Where's Brighton?
Brighton: (pokes head out from under a female mannequin) Are these dummies anatomically correct?

Grace: (referring to her previous psychiatrist appointment) She took me back through my childhood.
Fran: Wow, must have been a quick trip.
Grace: Oh you have no idea how complicated my life is.

Fran: Hey, be nicer to your sister.
Brighton: Why, because we're a family?
Fran: Yes, that's right, and someday your father's gonna be old and sick, you're gonna want him to live with her.

Fran: Oh! The nanny gets to live here?
Niles: Is that a problem?
Fran: Oh, yeah, I'm sure I'm gonna miss being 29 and still living at home with my parents, but, if it's best for the kids...
Niles: Twenty-nine...
Fran: Don't start with me, Niles.

Brighton: Maggie doesn't date.
Fran: Never?
Maggie: The boys haven't noticed me yet.
Brighton: Oh, they've noticed, Maggie and... that's why you don't date!

(Fran sees no available chairs at the breakfast table)
Fran: Oh...where do I sit?
Niles: The previous nanny sat in the kitchen.
Fran: Oh, how antisocial!

Maxwell: Miss Fine, you seem to have listed the Queen Mother as a reference.
Fran: What? Let me see that. Oh, no, that's not the Queen Mother. That's my mother from Queens!

Trivia Edit

  • Sylvia is also the name of Fran Drescher's mother. Just like Morty (Fran Fine's father, who will later appear) is Drescher's father's name.
  • This episode is also know as "The Nanny".
  • This episode was shot in early 1993 at Culver Studios in Culver City, California. After a pilot presentation in April 1993, the series was picked up by CBS shortly after.
  • In the pilot presentation, there was a different bridal shop scene, a live-action opening credits featuring only Drescher that was set to "If My My Friends Could See Me Now" (performed by Gwen Verdon) and an office scene featuring Maxwell, C.C. and Niles that took place before Fran arrived at the Sheffield residence. The bridal shop scene was reshot, the live-action opening credits were scrapped, the live-action opening credits were replaced with a new animated opening credits and the office scene was excluded from the final product.
  • Most of the set designs in this episode differed from the ones used for the rest of the series. This because when filming a pilot episode for a proposed series, rented sets that were leftover from other television programs are used instead of purchasing all new sets. This is to save money just in case the pilot isn't picked up by a television network.