The actor told PEOPLE at SCAD TVfest that he visits with his former costars "all the time"
They really are always glad you came.
The cast of Cheers, including Ted Danson, Kelsey Grammer, Rhea Perlman, John Ratzenberger and George Wendt, reunited last month at the 75th annual Primetime Emmy Awards, and Grammer he felt the love from the audience.
“The reception was really nice,” the actor, 68, told PEOPLE on Thursday at the 2024 SCAD TVfest in Atlanta. “It was like they've missed it; they like it. It was fun to see us all there and that was really rewarding.”
Grammer, who received the festival’s Legend of Television Award, said he “sort of” stays in touch with his castmates from the ‘80s sitcom.
“We visit all the time,” Grammer explained. “I still talk to Ted all the time. I see Rhea shopping sometimes. John I bump into out in Palm Springs, and George and I went to one of those signing things in Pittsburgh a while back. And I see Woody [Harrelson] all the time, actually. We're still in each other's lives.”
“There are differences between network and streaming obviously, but I think the audience member who finds the show is the same audience,” Grammer said. “They're there because they love it. They love this character. They love a former kind of style of comedy that they've missed. And we're back.”
He thinks Frasier represents a “more innocent and not so jaded” type of television show.
“We're purists” Garmmer said. “We love the people we play. We're not out to hurt each other. When Frasier was first on television, the only shows that sort of really took a bite out of our viewership were shows like When Animals Turn on their Masters — just the weirdest, meanest stuff. And we could never go there.”
Grammer believes the audience has matured since Frasier first aired from 1993 to 2004.
“It's like the whole country matured a little bit into a world where they think, ‘Maybe we could be nice to each other again, have some fun root for somebody. Love the people we love to watch, love to laugh with them, not because we want to see them fail, but because we want to root for them,’” he said. “What you get from the audience now for Frasier is, they're really rooting for him. And it's a wonderful thing. They're also nostalgically kind of re-immersed in a world that they liked seeing.”
While accepting the Legend of Television Award, Grammer teared up talking about injecting that spirit of love in his career.
“If you know the William Faulkner's acceptance speech of the Nobel Prize for Literature, he gave advice to a young writer and he said, basically, ‘If you don't write about matters of the heart, then you're writing about nothing,’” Grammer said. “And I said, ‘It means nothing if it doesn't connect to the human heart.’ So that's the business we're in. Its design is to let the human spirit soar. If it's acting, it's to let the human condition sing its song and connect us all together.”
Grammer choked up before concluding, “Yeah, that's it.”
He got emotional again during a panel with Frasier castmates Jack Cutmore-Scott, Anders Keif, Toks Olagundoye and Jess Salgueiro while discussing bringing Nicholas Lyndhurt onto the show for its latest go-around.
“Him coming and joining us was one of the greatest privileges in my life and one of the greatest things, I think for him,” Grammer said.
The five-time Emmy winner called Lyndhurst, 62, “one of the funniest people that ever lived.”
“Nicholas of course is, might be one of my best friends,” Grammer continued. “I don’t want to be corny and say he’s my best friend because then he’d say, ‘No, I’m not.’ But he’s certainly one of them. And to see him in this show is just magnificent and he’s just a gift to everybody that sees him.”
He wrapped up by making a gentle nudge at the network to pick Frasier back up for a second season.
“This show’s about love,” Grammer said. “The love we discover. The love we have. The love we’re looking for, the love that just dropped in our laps. And that’s what we’re going to keep it about ... providing somebody loves us enough at Paramount.”
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Frasier is streaming now on Paramount+.
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