Ed Asner couldn’t afford to be a journalist in real life so he decided to play one on TV. That’s right, Mary Tyler Moore’s boss Lou Grant had newspaper aspirations! Alas, it seems acting was a far more reliable profession to pursue. Says Asner:
I was a high school journalist and wanted to go into it because it was dashing and exciting. One day in college, my instructor, whom I revered, passed by my desk and said, ‘Are you thinking of journalism as a career?’ And I said, ‘yeah.’ She came back and said, ‘I wouldn’t…you can’t make any money at it.’ With that, I washed away any plans that I had, but as I tell the story, I also became an overnight sensation as an actor.