‘The Nanny’ Star Fran Drescher Who Guest Star Surprised Her The Most About, Making Princess Diana Laugh



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Many celebrities have come to Sheffield’s doorstep to star in ‘The Nanny’, but there was one legendary star who managed to surprise Fran Drescher.

The actress, who played Fran Fine on the hit sitcom from 1993 to 1999, welcomed many stars to the set, but there was one, in particular, who made a lasting impression.

“Everyone has always been really nice,” the 64-year-old told Fox News Digital. “But Elizabeth Taylor was really warm, very generous. She sat on the couch on set and anyone who wanted to stand behind her and take a picture with her could. And the photographer on set did that for the actors and the team. She was very welcoming of everyone.”

Fran Drescher, left, and Elizabeth Taylor for "The nanny" episode "Where are the pearls?" originally aired February 26, 1996.

Fran Drescher, left, and Elizabeth Taylor for “The Nanny” episode “Where’s the Pearls?” originally aired February 26, 1996.
(CBS via Getty Images)

“But the funny thing is, if you wanted a photo, you had to pay for editing,” laughed Drescher. “Renee Taylor, who played nanny mom Sylvia Fine on the show, said, ‘I’ll pay for that, but make sure you give me what Liz gets!'”


Drescher also had fond memories of Rocketman.

Fran Drescher, as Fran Fine, in the CBS television sitcom "The nanny," around 1997.

Fran Drescher as Fran Fine on the CBS television sitcom ‘The Nanny’, circa 1997.
(CBS via Getty Images)

“It took us a long time to get Elton John, but we finally got him,” Drescher said. “We were told he liked red roses in his dressing room, so we filled his dressing room with red roses. He was just covered. He was really flattered. And it was a wonderful episode. to have one of these show stars.

“And it was a lot of fun coming up with ideas because we could write whatever we wanted. [The character] Mr. Sheffield was in show business, so it made perfect sense that we would come up with names. And it was easy to do. We could invent whatever we wanted. This was never the common thread of the story. These stars were always throwing something that complicated things for Fran, and she was always in trouble with Mr. Sheffield.”

Fran Drescher welcomes Elton John on the set of "The nanny."

Fran Drescher welcomes Elton John on the set of “The Nanny”.
(CBS via Getty Images)

After leading a successful career spanning decades, Drescher is honored Thursday at the Hollywood Museum alongside Michael Feinstein and Geri Jewell of “The Facts of Life” fame at the launch of the “Real to Reel” exhibit in partnership with the board member Mitch O’Farrell.

The exhibit, which celebrates LGBTQ Heritage Month, aims to “tell the story of the milestones and influence that LBGTQ characters and storylines have had in Hollywood, from early stereotypes to modern depictions.”

Drescher said she was grateful for the recognition as well as her many accomplishments along the way, including meeting Princess Diana.


“We were both at the CFDA Awards in New York, and I was a presenter,” Drescher recalled. “At the time, Mr. Blackwell had a best-dressed and worst-dressed list. She was on the best-dressed list and I was on the worst-dressed list. I remember her standing in the middle of this cocktail party and there were probably 100 people crammed into this single room.

“She had a woman next to her who knew every single person in the room. Well, I walked over to her because there was no way I would be intimidated. I was going to cut through the crowd and join her because it was probably my only chance. And, like the nanny, I’ve always been a carpe diem girl.

Princess Diana at the CFDA Awards Party in New York.

Princess Diana at the CFDA Awards Party in New York.
(Pool Photo/Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images)

“I apologized and forgave throughout,” Drescher continued. “When I finally reached the center of the room, the woman next to her said, ‘This is Fran Drescher. She’s on a very popular show right now. A very funny actress.’ I shook her hand and said, “When the history books are written, you will be the heroine of the story. She looked at me – I could still see her looking at me right now – and then she said, “Oh, thank you. It’s so sweet to say. “And I meant every word.”

But Drescher was not done impressing the Princess of Wales. When she took the stage, the star made sure to share a joke she had been working on just for her.

“I said, ‘I met Princess Diana backstage and I said, ‘Princess, we’re both on Mr. Blackwell’s list,'” Drescher said. said, ‘Yeah, but I was on the best dressed list and you were on the worst. And I said, ‘Yes, but you have Princess Margaret on your list. I have Madonna and Demi [Moore] in mine. You’re on the wrong list princess!’


Actress Fran Drescher standing with her arms raised near photographers at a CFDA gala.

Actress Fran Drescher standing with her arms raised near photographers at a CFDA gala.
(Robin Platzer/Getty Images)

“I saw her sitting in the front row. Belly. Laughing and kicking her knee, bouncing her foot. Laughing in a really guttural, genuine way. I could see her now sitting in the front row wearing a blue dress with a beaded choker. just laughing. She was so good humored and not elitist at all. And she was surprised. She had no idea I was going to say that. But I’m a comedy writer, and I I knew the public would eat that with a spoon. It’s a high point in my career.

Drescher said she felt blessed today. She endured a painful past, which included a horrific rape at gunpoint in 1985, being divorced from her husband of 21 years – Peter Marc Jacobson – who publicly came out as gay, as well as being diagnosed with uterine cancer in 2000 after two years of misdiagnosis by several doctors.

In 2007, the survivor started the Cancer Schmancer Movement, a non-profit organization that aims to educate people on how to identify and eliminate the causes of cancer and other illnesses from their daily routine. That same year, she helped convince Congress to pass the Gynecological Cancer Education and Awareness Act, which became law.

Fran Drescher at a signing session for her book, "Cancer Schmancer," a memoir describing his recovery from cancer, May 6, 2002, in New York.

Fran Drescher at a book signing for her book, ‘Cancer Schmancer,’ a memoir describing her recovery from cancer, May 6, 2002, in New York City.
(Lawrence Lucier/Getty Images)

In January, Drescher was elected president of SAG-AFTRA, which represents approximately 160,000 performers and media professionals. She also wrote the foreword to a new picture book, “N is for the Nanny,” which references the ’90s show. One hundred percent of the proceeds go to the Cancer Schmancer Movement.


“I think it’s important that I continue to push the idea that we all have to be the change we want in this world,” she said. “And I’m very proud of ‘The Nanny.’ It’s the gift that keeps on giving and it has certainly stood the test of time.

“Frankly, it hasn’t aired in almost 30 years. So people keep rediscovering it. It got embraced on TikTok, and it started airing on HBO Max. I think I’ve stayed very relevant. I have a young audience. But I’m also fearless when it comes to talking about important things.

SAG-AFTRA President Fran Drescher attends the Environmental Media Association IMPACT Summit and Cocktail Reception at Pendry West Hollywood on June 2, 2022, in West Hollywood.

SAG-AFTRA President Fran Drescher attends the Environmental Media Association IMPACT Summit and Cocktail Reception at Pendry West Hollywood on June 2, 2022, in West Hollywood.
(Leon Bennett/Getty Images for The Hollywood Reporter)

“I came out the other side – for the better,” she added. “You have to play the hand with which you have been treated with grace, elegance and courage. I have been very lucky and blessed in my life. I started with very humble beginnings. My father worked two jobs when I was very young. It was an amazing race with very low lows… but I learned very important life lessons that carry me. I am very lucky.


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