Set in 1961, Maureen joins the Chicago based Playboy Club as one of its beautiful Bunnies. She is determined, bold, sexy and filled with ambition. During her first night of work she is introduced to Nick Dalton, a handsome, dashing lawyer, who helps her when she kills a member of the mafia in self defense.
As the events of the evening play out, we are introduced to the other Bunnies at the club: Bunny Alice who likes to work at the club for the financial freedom it brings her, Bunny Brenda who dreams of being the first ever African American centerfold for Playboy and Bunny Carol-Lynne who serves at the Bunny Mother to the other girls.moreless
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Bunny Mother Carol-Lynne Cunningham
This episode was nominated for a Golden Reel Award in the category of Best Sound Editing: Short Form Musical in Television
The average work shift for a Bunny was 10 hours.
Alice states that she had made $143.00 in one night with a lot of surprise. Taking inflation into consideration, that amount would equal $1,010.00 in 2011 money.
Alice and Sean are members of the Mattachine Society. This was an early organization fighting for homosexual rights.
Scenes where Maureen (Amber Heard) and Brenda (Naturi Naughton) are talking before going to bed should be in the "Bunny Hutch" instead of the Mansion. This was where female workers without a local residence could stay. The original was located across the street from the Playboy Club.
Laura Benanti (Bunny Carol Lynne) said that performing in the pilot was one of her favorite things she has ever done.
Amber Heard released a picture of herself from her work on the pilot without consent of 20th Century Fox Television. This led the network to ban any further unauthorized photography from the set.
Amber Heard (who plays Maureen) said while the network will probably make the series as racy as they could. She felt that the pilot episode wasn't racy at all.
When Maureen and Nick are in the storage room, you can see a box of Rose's Lime Juice. Rose's was own by the Schweppes Company in 1963 and used for a variety of mixed alcoholic drinks.
When asked what cigarette Nick wanted he responds that he wants "Reds". Reds is a slang term for the Marlboro brand of cigarette.
When Nick Dalton is entering the club, there is a board with a listing of club members that are present. Among the names are Jeremy Beiermann, Bret Tanzer and Stefan Rand who are members of the show's production department.
Bunny Maureen is from Fort Wayne, Indiana and is an orphan.
While Nick Dalton is holding a newspaper in Billy's office you can see the headline of "MacNamara Likes Outlook In Vietnam Tours Front". This is referencing to Secretary of Defense Robert S. McNamara visiting Vietnam in Sept, 1963.
The song that Bunny Mother Carol-Lynne is singing while Bunny Maureen comments on her is Chicago (That Toddlin' Town) written by Fred Fisher.
Sean: (over the phone) How much have you made tonight?
Bunny Alice: Over a hundred and it's only eleven. I think it's because I took off my wedding ring.
Sean: (surprised look) What?
Nick Dalton: But this man you killed..is Clyde Hill.
Bunny Maureen: Who's Clyde Hill?
Nick Dalton: That's exactly what the cops are going to ask. But it will only take them a few days to realize he was a key player with the Bianchi's.
Bunny Maureen: Who?
Nick Dalton: A major Chicago crime family. You'll get a bullet in forty-eight hours.
Bunny Maureen: (Maureen showing her naiveness) Won't the cops protect me?
Nick Dalton: Did you just move to the city?
Bunny Carol Lynne: (To Nick Dalton) Do you think I don't know why you come to the Playboy Club every single night? You need every man in the place thinking, "wish I could be him". And every girl thinking, "pick me". It's your fuel. You feed off of it. But you can't have us all.
Billy Rose: (On what to expect at the club) It's the Playboy Club, it's not a knitting club.
Bunny Maureen: (About Nick Dalton) What do they say about him?
Bunny Brenda: That he's everything you want, he's everything you don't.
Billy Rose: (To Nick Dalton) You're the only man I know that puts his hand up a girl's skirt looking for a dictionary.
Bunny Brenda: (to Maureen) You can go anywhere you want in this world and life is always going to be rough. But we're in here. It doesn't matter what's going on out there. We're the safest, loveliest and richest girls in the world. We're at the party. If you turn down the invitation you only have yourself to blame.
Bunny Carol-Lynne: (To Bunny Maureen about Nick) If I were you, and believe me I was, I would stay very far away.
Bunny Brenda: He is Nick Dalton.
Bunny Alice: Every girl working here wants to marry a man just like that.
Bunny Brenda: Hef doesn't care what color people are, I'm going to be the first chocolate centerfold.
(the girls give her a questioning look)
Bunny Brenda: I am, you can't discriminate against these babies.
Carol Lynne: (to the girls as they get dressed) You are either the living breathing fantasy that is the Playboy Bunny or you're not.
Bunny Janie: Everything is a buck and a half.
Young Man: Everything?
(other guys laugh)
Bunny Janie: If it's on the menu it's a buck and a half, if it's not on the menu it's not for sale. And I'm not a waitress, I'm Bunny Janie.
Bunny Alice: My husband hates it that I work here but I tell him that the money's too good. I make more money than my father.
Nick Dalton: I don't believe we've met, I'm Nick Dalton.
Bunny Maureen: It's lovely to meet you Mr. Dalton. May I offer you...
Nick: Reds, Please.
Maureen: Oh, I'm all out, ummm, I could get more from the back if you don't mind waiting.
Nick: I don't mind.
Max: (To Nick Dalton, serving a drink) Extra dry, extra cold, rocks glass, no rocks, three olives.
Bunny Alice: (while talking about why Bunny Carol-Lynne performs on stage) Carol-Lynne was the very first bunny, she can do almost anything she wants.
Bunny Brenda: And she wouldn't want you on stage.
Bunny Maureen: How do you know I want to be on stage?
Bunny Brenda: You don't get those legs just from walking. Plus your tray is almost empty and it isn't even ten. That means you are selling something that people want and it sure as hell ain't cigarettes.
Nick Dalton: (talking about the dead man with Maureen) What? Walk away? The entire club saw you dancing with him. There's blood all over your nylons and under your shoes.
Bunny Maureen: (Looking at the man she killed) Aren't we calling the cops?
Nick Dalton: (Checking the body) No.
Bunny Maureen: No?
Nick Dalton: You killed the wrong guy.
Bunny Maureen: No I killed the right guy. Not on purpose but he was attacking me.
Songs: Chicago, That Toddlin' Town (Tony Bennett) performed on the show by Laura Benanti
Sh-Boom (The Crew Cuts)
Playboy (The Marvelettes)
Shake a Tail Feather (Ike and Tina Turner) performed on the show by Karen LeBlanc
Tina's Prayer (Ike and Tina Turner)
The pilot episode was watched by just over 5 million viewers. This put it last in viewership for all the premieres (NBC, ABC, CBS)showing at the ten o'clock hour.
Original International Air Dates:
Canada: September 19, 2011 on Citytv
Naturi Naughton promoted the pilot episode at the 2011 Essence Music Festival in New Orleans.
Hugh Hefner will be narrating the pilot episode but will not be narrating any future episodes.
Casting for the pilot was conducted in New York City, Chicago, Los Angelas and Vancouver.
The pilot was taped under a American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA) contract. All actors must be a member.
Florida Family Association (FFA) and The Parents Television Council have condemned the show. The FFA plans on targeting the sponsors of the show.
The Daily Beast has the Pilot episode listed among the top eight pilots for the 2011 Fall TV season.
A sneak preview of the pilot episode was shown at Hugh Hefner's Playboy mansion on June 11th, 2011. In attendance was Leah Renee Cudmore (Bunny Alice), Naturi Naughton (Bunny Brenda), Laura Benanti (Bunny Carol-Lynne), Eddie Cibrian (Nick Dalton), Dave Krumholtz (Billy Rosen) and Jenna Dewan (Bunny Janie).
Development for the series began in 2009 and was known as Bunny Tales.
The Parents Television Council condemned the series before the release of the pilot episode.
In response to the controversy over the pilot episode, Columnist Scott D. Pierce has accused NBC affiliates of being biased to the show based on it's Playboy association.
Salt Lake City NBC affiliate KSL-TV has stated that they would refuse to show the pilot along with the whole series.
Laura Benanti (Bunny Carol-Lynne) and Amber Heard (Bunny Maureen) both referred to their Playboy Bunny uniforms for the pilot as uncomfortable, yet served as a reminder to eat properly.
Interior shooting was done at the Chicago Studio City.
After seeing the pilot episode, NBC gave permission to 20th Century Fox TV/Imagine TV to produce 12-episode season for their fall 2011 schedule.
Madison Street between Michigan and Wabash avenues in Chicago was closed to all vehicular traffic during the taping of the pilot.
Jeff Hephner was originally chosen to play character Nick Dalton but was replaced by Eddie Cibrian.
The Charles Gates Dawes House in Evanston, Illinois was used to represent Hefner's Playboy Mansion in the pilot.
Filming for this episode took approximately 13 days.
Filming for the pilot took place in March at the old Meigs Terminal on Northerly Island, which runs along the Chicago Lakefront.
While nudity has been approved for the show, it has been confirmed that their would be no nudity within the pilot.
The opening description from the script, "The Door Bunny at the entrance to the Playboy Club. The ears. The tail. The satin. The breasts."
According to the script, the character of Maureen is described as. "20, Norma Jean before she was Marilyn, an untethered, unconscious sexuality."
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