Shelley Long is a renowned actress famously known for her role as Diane Chambers in the iconic sitcom, “Cheers.” She unexpectedly quit the show at its peak, leaving the audience in shock. Almost 30 years later, she lives a life that is far different from what is expected of a star.

    Shelley Long is a renowned actress famously known for her role as Diane Chambers in the iconic sitcom, “Cheers.” She quit the show at its peak to pursue a career in film, but things did not pan out the way she had planned. Now the actress lives alone and spends her days with her Chihuahua.

    Shelley Long broke into fame as one the biggest stars of the hit sitcom “Cheers.” Long played waitress Diane Chambers, an intelligent and sophisticated woman who was not afraid to voice out her blatant opinions.

    Long’s character was also interesting because of her on-and-off relationship with Ted Danson, who played Sam Marlon. No one knew if the two would end up together, which made their storyline become the main hook of the show.

    Shelley Long photographed for "Cheers" in the 1980's | Source: Getty Images

    “Cheers” became one the biggest shows to launch in 1983. It was created by James Burrows and Glen and Les Charles. The story was set in a bar and followed the lives of a group of locals who met to enjoy a drink, relax, and talk.

    The show’s creators wanted to use Long’s character as the guide for how the audience interacted with what happened at the bar.

    Long remembered the first time she heard about “Cheers.” She was doing movies and did not want to do a TV show, but she said the “Cheers” script was the best she had ever read, so she could not resist.

    On the day of the audition, Long had a bit of a wardrobe malfunction. She had intended to wear a dress but realized the waistband was stretched out, so she put a belt around it. But when she met Danson, she realized the first thing he saw was her cleavage.

    Danson also confessed to how embarrassed he was to have looked at his soon-to-be co-star’s breasts, but the actors reckoned their first encounter started on a good note.

    “Cheers” ended in 1993 with 11 seasons and 275 episodes. The show survived almost getting canceled after its first season, and its finale became one the most watched episode in the 90s.

    Ted Danson and Shelley Long in California in 2006 | Source: Getty Images

    Long’s time on “Cheers” earned her five Emmy nominations and a win in 1983, along with two Golden Globes. The actress also joined the spin-off, “Fraiser,” for three episodes, which added another Emmy award to her catalog.

    Long and Danson’s pull-and-toss relationship made them one of the most watched and loved sitcom couples with a complicated dynamic that made “Cheers” the classic show it is today.

    The shows creators purposely posed their relationship as unhealthy and added other possible connections to the storyline, but Diane and Sam’s love story ended when Long decided to leave the show.

    Long expressed how difficult it was to leave the show and acknowledged the fantastic work and success she gained from the sitcom. However, the actress wanted to give more time to her family and the new production company she had just started.

    Long also dabbled in movies. She starred in the Disney movie “Outrage Fortune” and acted alongside Tom Hanks in “The Money Pitt,” in Ron Howard’s “Night Shift” and alongside Ryan O’Neal in “Incredible Differences.”

    As much as Long enjoyed “Cheers,” she said it felt like she was repeating herself, and as she slowly ventured into movies, she felt judged.

    After announcing her departure, the actress recalled an interview she had and how upset and angry the interviewer was with her for leaving and trying different genres.

    But not everyone criticized her choice to leave the show; some understood that the actress had a two-year-old baby and needed to spend time with her family.

    When it came to the creators of “Cheers,” they also admitted that Long’s departure was a shock and brought a lot of worry about how her absence would impact the show’s success. Since she was such a big part of the sitcom, the whole cast’s livelihood was affected.

    Shelley Long in Hollywood in 2004 | Source: Getty Images

    The writers confessed that their inspiration usually came from Diane and Sam’s scenes, so from their perspective, the characters held the sitcom together. Danson also worried about his performance without Long by his side and wondered if people would want to see Sam without Diane.

    Although Long was focused on her business and expanding her acting portfolio , things in her personal life took a dark turn.

    Shelley Long Hits Rock Bottom
    Long was married to Bruce Tyson from 1981 to 2004, but the same year her marriage ended, the actress was reportedly rushed to the hospital due to a suicide attempt.

    The actress allegedly tried to overdose on painkillers and was admitted to UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles. One of Long’s close sources revealed the actress was deeply depressed after the end of her marriage.

    During this time, friends of Long said she was not eating, barely made it out of bed, and hinted at her suicidal thoughts. “It is very sad to see this woman, who is only 55, looking like she’s turning 90,” said the insider.

    The actress’ friends said they watched Long drown in her depression for 18 months, and the longer it went, the more she confessed to feeling like she had nothing to live for.

    Long was eventually released from the hospital, but to face her husband of 22 years walking out on their marriage was difficult. She had to sell her Hollywood mansion and now lives alone.

    The former couple met on a blind date in 1979 and married two years later. They have a daughter together named Juliana. But before Tyson, Long married Ken Solomon, whom she divorced in the ’70s.

    Shelly Long on "Modern Family in 2018 | Source: Getty Images

    However, what was reported as a suicide attempt was described as a bad reaction to medication by Long’s publicist, Martin Mickelson.

    Mickelson said it was not true that Long had tried to take her life because of her failed marriage; instead, Mickelson clarified that the actress took an extra pain pill because of the back pain she was suffering from.

    The publicist explained that Long had a back injury from when she fell on the set of “Cheers” years ago, which still bothers her today. But Mickelson said Long was doing fine.

    Although Long left “Cheers” in hopes of building a more extensive career in movies, most people thought she became an example of what happens when one leaves a famous role with the hopes that making movies will make them bigger stars.

    While Long appeared in several more films like “Hello Again,” “Troop Beverly Hills,” “The Brady Bunch Movie,” and “Dr. T and the Women”; these films never lived up to her time on “Cheers.”

    Long has since lived her life out of the spotlight. She was also scarce on-screen but made a few appearances in a couple of TV shows.

    Living Out of the Spotlight
    Apart from her recurring role as DeDe Pritchett on the comedy show “Modern Family” from 2009 to 2019, Long has been living a low-profile life in recent years.

    In October 2021, she was spotted walking her Chihuahua dog in Los Angeles. The actress kept her outfit simple, wearing a blue T-shirt with a grey sweater jacket over it and paired with grey jeans, which she rolled to show her white socks and white Nike sneakers.

    She left her iconic hair untied, showing shades of gray, and finished off the look with her round clear-rimmed glasses. As Long and her Chihuahua walked, she took a break on a bench while her furry friend ran around. This was the first time she was photographed in public since 2019.

    The actress reportedly now lives in a $1.3 million condo in Los Angeles, but she is not seen much. Nonetheless, Long has her daughter Juliana, born in 1985 in Los Angeles. At the time she was born, her mother was at the peak of her fame on “Cheers.”

    Since Juliana was one of the main reasons Long left “Cheers,” her relationship with her daughter grew stronger. Even though the actress’ career in films did not become the success she longed for, her daughter was still inspired by her.

    Juliana grew up with an interest in performing arts. When she was three years old, she was taken to a Cirque du Soleil show and instantly fell in love with the leotards, the mimes, and the stage.

    So Juliana pursued her passion and graduated with a degree in theatre from the University of Southern California.


    Juliana got to perform in many theatre productions. She played “Boquicia” in the original musical, “Invasion!”, Elizabeth Proctor in “The Crucible,” and Rabbi Isador Chemelwitz in “Angels in America.”

    When she was in college, she wrote a one-hour one-woman show titled “Pieces” about her addiction to hoarding things from her childhood in the trunk of her car.

    Juliana’s career highlight was when she played in “Dead End.” This happened in 2004, the same year her parents divorced. However, she was there for her mother and helped her overcome the pain of her separation.

    Tyson went on to have another daughter named Bella, and Juliana has maintained a close relationship with her father and half-sister.

    Juliana made her first television appearance on the show “Privileged,” where she played the role of Victoria Talyor. Besides her extensive acting portfolio, she is also a founding member of a theatre in Los Angles, “Boom Kat Dance Theatre.” She created Good Juju Ink which sells greeting cards, apparel, and other products.

    As for her love life, Juliana married Ryan Kissick, who went to Stanford and works as a management consultant. The couple had known each other since they were kids, but they went their separate ways and did not encounter each other for 20 years.

    Kissick and Juliana randomly met at a mutual friend’s birthday party and exchanged numbers, but they only dated a year later.

    The date went well because Juliana ran to her friends and told them she had met the man she would tie the knot with. The couple also bonded over the “Far and Away” movie set in Ireland which was directed by Ron Howard, who directed her mother in “Night Shift.”

    The couple was mainly in love with the film’s setting, so it was no surprise that their wedding was held at Ashford Castle in Ireland.

    Juliana and Kassick spent their honeymoon in South Africa. They welcomed their daughter Josephine Belle Kissick on April 16, 2019.

    Long might have suffered the heartbreak seeing her marriage collapse. She had bigger hopes for her career, but the impact she had on “Cheers” and her talent as an actress will never be forgotten. The actress also has the support of her daughter, and now she gets to explore a new role of being a grandmother.

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