The Untold Truth Of Will & Grace

Pause your third re-watch of Friends on Netflix, because Will & Grace is coming back to TV. NBC is reviving its must-see-TV classic for 12 new episodes this fall. Everyone remembers the basics: best friends Will, a gay man, and Grace, a straight woman, live and love in Manhattan with their quirkier friends Jack and Karen. But there's a lot you might not know about the groundbreaking (and/or problematic, depending on how you look at it) show. Here's the untold truth of Will & Grace.

The real Grace is casting director Janet Eisenberg

The show's main pairing was directly inspired by a real-life twosome: Max Mutchnick, one of the show's executive producers, and his childhood friend Janet Eisenberg. Mutchnick and Eisenberg dated in real life, and then became close friends after Mutchnick revealed he was gay. Sound familiar? Eisenberg, who attended Beverly Hills High School with Mutchnick, now works as a casting director in New York.

All four main actors originally passed on their roles

Eric McCormack, Debra Messing, Sean Hayes, and Megan Mullally are all strongly associated with the now iconic roles they played on Will & Grace, and they each won at least one Emmy for their performances. But Mullally says, "All four of us originally passed on our roles." She recounted to Larry King that she didn't initially connect with the character of Karen, who seemed overly similar to Christine Baranski's role on Cybil, but she worked with the show's producers to collaborate on a stronger, more unique conception. She also told King that McCormack didn't originally want to play a gay character. Apparently, he got over it, and got a ton of accolades for doing it.

Sean Hayes regrets that he didn't come out until after the show ended

Actor Sean Hayes, who portrayed openly gay character Jack on Will & Grace, didn't come out in real life until five years after the show ended. While many people speculated about his sexuality, he preferred not to reveal details about his personal life to the public before a 2010 interview with The Advocate. More recently, Hayes has revealed that he's "ashamed and embarrassed" he stayed in the closet for so long when he might have made a difference in young gay people's lives by coming out sooner. Hayes is now married to his longtime partner Scott Icenolgle.

Will and Grace's rent was $5,940 per month.

Well, at least that's what it would cost now in 2017 to live in the New York City apartment where the protagonists were supposedly living in the show. According to real estate website Trulia (via Forbes), the rent would be a cool six grand for Will and Grace's cushy Upper West Side abode at 155 Riverside Drive. His character was a lawyer and hers was an interior designer, so they probably were pretty well off, but... damn.

Will & Grace was the first prime-time sitcom to feature a wedding between a Jewish woman and Jewish man

This sounds surprising, considering Jewish characters and culture were such a staple of the sitcoms of this time. Think Seinfeld. But Grace Adler's wedding to Leo Markus, played by Harry Connick Jr., was the first time a Jewish man and woman were shown getting hitched on mainstream TV. According to writer Kera Bolonik, the double Jewish union was unique, and even meaningful.

Megan Mullally sang a song in character with Donald Trump at the Emmys

At the 2006 Emmy ceremony, Mullally embodied her character Karen for a Green Acres-inspired spoof duet with Donald Trump. She says he behaved obsessively about winning the fake competition that the segment was part of, and that she now really regrets the performance. Anyway, what ever happened to that guy?

By the final season, the stars all earned $600,000 per episode

When the eighth season was ordered, Will & Grace stars McCormack, Messing, Hayes, and Mullally all got a raise. The four actors were all paid $600,000 per episode for the 24-episode season, and it was the first time that Hayes and Mullally made the same amount as the two other leads. That's definitely enough to afford to live in the apartment Will and Grace shared in the show.

The creators ended the show after achieving the goal of making it mainstream

Mutchnick told The Hollywood Reporter that after eight seasons, it felt "natural" and like "a good time" to end the show. Fellow executive producer David Kohan and producer-director James Burrows agreed, noting that the show had introduced and normalized gay people for a swath of the public. As Kohan put it, "Yeah, you know, in the end, this show ultimately appealed to everybody, even the little old lady in Kansas. We're really proud of that. It's almost a miracle that straight men would begin to identify with Will — that his sexual orientation became secondary to their wanting him to have an emotional involvement."

The show's sets were donated to Emerson College

After Will & Grace ended, Mutchnick decided to donate the set to his alma mater, Emerson College in Boston. It stayed in the school's library from 2008 to 2013, and then was moved to Emerson's Los Angeles center to make more room for things, like books. Knowing that the set was still lying around was part of what inspired Mutchnick to revive the show, first for a viral video to support Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign, and now for the additional episodes.

Hello old friends

It's now been more than a decade since Will & Grace ended, and a lot has changed. Like, now it's getting a revamp. That's definitely different! So when you hear those sultry piano sounds of the theme song start to play, and Karen's melodious laugh once again graces your ears, now you know a little goss to enhance your viewing experience.