January 18, 2009

Producer: ‘ER’ was initially set in Boston

NBC's medical drama ER, which is due to end after its 15th season, was originally set in Boston not Chicago, a producer says.

ER Executive Producer John Wells said when the late author Michael Crichton created the series about life in a hospital emergency room, it was supposed to take place in Massachusetts where Crichton went to Harvard Medical School, the Chicago Sun-Times said Sunday.

Wells said the series' setting was only relocated to Chicago after creators had concerns ER may be forced to compete with St. Elsewhere, a competing TV medical drama based in Boston.

We didn't want that factor of competition added to our new show, Wells said.

Chicago was tabbed as the ER replacement for Boston due to the fact the Illinois city had St. Patrick's Day celebrations that fit events in Crichton's initial ER script, the producer told the Sun-Times.

I told him that in Chicago they dye the river green, Wells said, so that might be our best bet.