I find it remarkable that one of the most succesful and long running US sitcoms of the late 1970s and early 1980s was based on a Martin Scorsese movie. Alice, a Warner Bros. production for CBS, was based on Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore, and starred Linda Lavin as the eponymous character. It ran for 202 episodes over nine seasons.
So succesful was it, (consistently finishing in the top ten over its lifetime), it spawned a spin-off called Flo, which itself ran for two seasons.
In spite of its success, the network had little faith in Alice after they saw the pilot, and ordered four more test episodes to be made. They still weren’t convinced.
They found the new installments to be dull and uninspired. CBS didn’t want to give up on Alice, though, and granted Shayne time to address the network’s concerns.Alice: Life Behind the Counter in Mel’s Greasy Spoon (a Guide to the Feature Film, the TV Series, and More)
I guess he managed to address them.
For more movies that ended up as sitcoms, you might like to listen to this episode of Comedy Is …