The Arizona Republic

‘Alice’ may be coming back to TV

- Garrett Mitchell The TV series changed the setting to Phoenix, where the titular character, now played by Linda Lavin, lands at Mel’s after running out of money. The series spawned the catchphras­e “kiss my grits!” – a chide that’s lasted for decades.

“Alice,” the Arizona-set sitcom that immortaliz­ed Mel’s Diner on Grand Avenue, may feature the familiar eatery in a proposed reboot.

Though it’s yet another reboot of a once-popular show, this comedy has Phoenix roots that could appeal to a new generation.

According to TVLine, “Juno” and “Tully” screenwrit­er Diablo Cody and “2 Broke Girls” writer-producer Liz Astrof are scripting the series for a pilot set in the present day for Fox.

The original CBS series, which aired from 1976 to 1985, was based on the Martin Scorsese film “Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore,” released in 1974. The movie starred the Oscar-winning Ellen Burstyn as Alice Hyatt, a widow who moves West with her son to pursue a better life. Along the way, she becomes a waitress at a roadside diner in Tucson and finds a newfound family in its quaint atmosphere.

The TV series changed the setting to Phoenix, where the titular character, now played by Linda Lavin, lands at Mel’s after running out of money. The series spawned the catchphras­e “kiss my grits!” – a chide that’s lasted for decades.

The real Mel’s Diner, known for its iconic tilted coffee cup sign, has leaned into its retro roots and embraces the mythos of “Alice” by featuring photos and memorabili­a of its claim to fame. The space had several previous incarnatio­ns in which it was known as Lester’s, Peter’s, Chris’ and Pat’s.

But you won’t find an Alice there anymore. At least, for now. An autographe­d photo from the TV show “Alice” hangs on the wall at Mel’s Diner in Phoenix in 2010. The eatery was the setting for the 1970s CBS television show “Alice.” Mel’s Diner was the setting for the sitcom “Alice.”

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 ?? CBS KEVIN WEIGHT/SPECIAL FOR THE REPUBLIC ?? Polly Holliday (from left), Beth Howland and Linda Lavin starred in “Alice.”
CBS KEVIN WEIGHT/SPECIAL FOR THE REPUBLIC Polly Holliday (from left), Beth Howland and Linda Lavin starred in “Alice.”
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