For most TV sitcom fans of the 1980s and 1990s, George Wendt is a household name, famous for being most well-known patron of the bar “Where everybody knows your name.”
Wendt, 64, who played played Norm Peterson on the show Cheers, was hospitalized this week for chest pains. The medical emergency caused Wendt to withdraw from preparing to play Oscar Madison in a stage production of The Odd Couple in November for Northlight Theatre in Chicago.
“George is family to us at Northlight and we wish him well for a complete and speedy recovery. He will be missed in the rehearsal room and on stage,” Odd Couple director BJ Jones told the Chicago Tribune. “We are so fortunate to have the brilliant Chicago actor Marc Grapey on our team, who was in the Broadway company of The Odd Couple, covering for both Nathan Lane and going on for Matthew Broderick. Marc will step in to the role and we couldn’t be more pleased to have his talent and energy in the cast.”
CBS News reports that Wendt was checked into a hospital Sunday for chest pains, is receiving care, and is expected to make a full recovery.
Wendt, along with Ted Danson and Rhea Perlman, was one of the only actors to appear in all 275 episodes of Cheers, which ran from 1982 until 1993. His character always sat at the end of the bar with Cliff Clavin (played by John Ratzenberger) and was greeted by shouts of “Norm,” each time he entered the bar.