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12 Things You Didn't Know About M*A*S*H

We all know that the legendary TV series M*A*S*H set during the Korean War actually ran longer than the war itself, and that the final episode is the most watched finale in television history but did you know these facts about the crew of the 4077th?

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1) Most people know there was a movie version featuring most of the same main characters that was filmed before the show, but did you know that the story was originally a book called MASH: A Novel About Three Army Doctors by Richard Hooker that was released in 1968?  

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2) Actor Mclean Stevenson originally was keen to play Hawkeye, but instead decided to take the role of Lt. Colonel Henry Blake.

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3) The only other actor who knew that Stevenson's character of Henry Blake was going to be killed off was Alan Alda 

4) Both Jamie Farr (Klinger) and Alan Alda (Hawkeye) were actual soldiers.

Farr was stationed in  Japan while Alda served in the Army Reserve in Korea for six months.

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5) Klinger was originally only going to appear in just one episode and was originally supposed to be gay.

This was changed to him being a soldier who cross dresses in an attempt to get sent home.

6) There were a number of of actors who appeared on the show before they hit the big time including Patrick Swayze, Ron Howard, Leslie Nielsen, John Ritter, Laurence Fishburne, Pat Morita, Rita Wilson, George Wendt, Shelley Long and Jeffrey Tambor.

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7) Alan Alda also directed 31 episodes and co-wrote thirteen more.

He also became the first person to win Emmys for directing, writing, and acting on the same show.

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8) Mike Farrell (B.J. Hunnicutt) asked that his character’s daughter be named Erin, after his real-life daughter.

The character’s name was originally going to be called Melissa.

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9) Gary Burghoff, who played Radar, said his characters teddy bear was lost for 30 years before it eventually appeared at an auction in 2005 where it was then sold back to Burghoff.

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10) Burghoff’s left hand is slightly deformed, and he took great measures to hide this during filming.

He would always be holding something (usually a clipboard), or would keep his hand in his pocket.

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11) The series finale “Goodbye, Farewell And Amen” was the only episode to feature the episode title on screen.

However “As Time Goes By” the previous episode, was actually the last ever to be filmed.

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12) There were three spin off shows, the most successful being  “Trapper John, M.D.” which featured the character of Trapper set 28 years after the war, and ran for seven series.

“AfterMASH” featured Colonel Potter, Klinger and Father Mulchay ran for just two series while “W*A*L*T*E*R.” which was about Radar's life back in America was made into pilot that was never developed into a full series.

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