Where the Cast of Murphy Brown Is Today


Summary

  • Murphy Brown was a hit in the ’90s for its strong portrayal of a female reporter tackling real issues.
  • The 2018 revival of Murphy Brown only lasted one season, likely due to its heavy focus on politics.
  • Candice Bergen and the rest of the cast have continued with guest appearances and new projects since the show ended.



Murphy Brown was one of the biggest comedies of the 1990s. Candice Bergen’s titular investigative reporter for the FYI news magazine captured viewers’ attention on CBS for ten seasons and nearly 250 episodes. That’s a run that fewer and fewer shows see these days.

Murphy Brown stood out for its strong portrayal of a no-nonsense female reporter tackling significant issues of the day. The show was a hallmark of its time, so it’s no surprise it was given the reboot treatment in 2018. However, this revival only lasted one season before CBS pulled the plug. One contributing factor was likely its extensive focus on the Trump presidency in a charged political environment where most viewers wanted their sitcoms to be an escape from politics.

So what happened after the show (and later revival) went off the air? Check out what the cast has been up to and where they are today.



Candice Bergen — Murphy Brown

Candice Bergen was the titular leading star in both the original series and revival. While not her debut role, Murphy Brown made Bergen a household name. She was the first female host of Saturday Night Live in 1975, as well as the first woman to join the elusive Five-Timers hosting club.


After Murphy Brown, Bergen appeared in prominent early 2000s films such as Miss Congeniality, Sweet Home Alabama, and View From the Top. She landed her next significant television role starring on Boston Legal. Bergen would return to Murphy Brown in the fall of 2018, though just for 13 episodes this time around. These days, Bergen mostly appears in movies and TV guest spots. She starred in 2018’s Book Club and its 2023 sequel and has made a few guest appearances on The Conners, the sequel to Murphy Brown‘s ’90s contemporary Roseanne. Bergen also occasionally pops up for Saturday Night Live cameos whenever a new face (most recently Emma Stone) joins the Five-Timers club.

Faith Ford — Corky Sherwood


Faith Ford was Murphy Brown’s initial replacement at FYI while she was in rehab, the perky Corky Sherwood. Prior to the series, Ford was best known for her soap opera work, appearing on both Another World and One Life to Live. After Murphy, Ford tried to find success in new sitcoms, though both Maggie Winters and The Norm Show were canceled fairly quickly.

Her next big hit came in 2003 when she was cast alongside Kelly Ripa in Hope & Faith. Ironically, Ford played the role of Hope rather than Faith. Throughout the late 2000s and early 2010s, Ford appeared in a string of television movies before joining the Murphy Brown revival. She continued with TV guest spots after the revival ended, with 2023 bringing a supporting role in Netflix’s We Have a Ghost and NBC’s revival of Night Court.

Pat Corley — Phil


Phil, played by Pat Corley, was the owner of the titular Phil’s Bar, where Murphy and the gang were regulars. Corley was already well established in the business for years before Murphy. He appeared in dozens of TV movies throughout the ’70s and ’80s, with just as many TV guest spots. Corley also recurred throughout all seven seasons of Hill Street Blues from 1981 to 1987.

Corley exited in season eight but would return for a guest spot in season ten. After Murphy Brown ended, he returned to his TV series and movie guest spots, including as a voice in Nickelodeon’s Hey Arnold! In 2006, he sadly passed away from heart failure at the age of 76. Tyne Daly appears as Phil’s sister Phyllis and the new owner of his bar in the revival.

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Charles Kimbrough — Jim Dial

Jim Dial, played by Charles Kimbrough, was the trusted veteran news anchor at FYI. Kimbrough’s acting chops date back to the 1950s, with his first few decades dominated by Broadway and the stage. Murphy Brown was one of his first significant gigs on television. After Murphy, he transitioned to voice acting in the early 2000s, with Pinky and the Brain, Family Guy, Batman Beyond, and Buzz Lightyear of Star Command filling out his resume.

After 2003, he stepped away from acting for many years, though he did return to the stage for the Pulitzer Prize-winning Harvey in 2012. He also made the jump to video games around this time too, giving voices in the Kingdom Hearts series in 2012 and 2017. Kimbrough only appeared in three episodes of the Murphy revival due to his acting retirement. This would end up being his last major role before his January 2023 death at 86.


Robert Pastorelli — Eldin Bernecky

Robert Pastorelli played Eldin Bernecky, Murphy’s eccentric house painter turned live-in nanny. Like Kimbrough, Pastorelli’s career began on Broadway around the ’70s. He followed this up with a string of TV guest spots in the ’80s before landing Murphy Brown. Pastorelli left the show after season seven, though did return for a guest spot in the 1998 series finale.

A year later, his then-girlfriend was found shot to death at their home. Pastorelli maintained she had done it herself, though a formal cause of death was unable to be determined. He had a minor role in the 2001 TV film South Pacific, but was otherwise out of the industry. Pastorelli would die in 2004 at 49 from a drug overdose.


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Joe Regalbuto — Frank Fontana

Frank Fontana, played by Joe Regalbuto, was a close confidant of Murphy and an investigative reporter for FYI. Regalbuto’s career launched in the early ’80s with roles including The Associates and Mork & Mindy. His breakthrough came in 1984 when he appeared in two seasons of Knots Landing.


Regalbuto appeared in all ten seasons plus the revival of Murphy Brown, even directing more than 20 episodes. After the original run, Regalbuto continued with directing, helming episodes of Friends, Hot in Cleveland, George Lopez, and Wizards of Waverly Place. He also made time for guest appearances on Ally McBeal, Ghost Whisperer, Criminal Minds, Major Crimes, and NCIS throughout the 2000s and early 2010s. The 2018 Murphy revival was his last significant project to date.

Grant Shaud — Miles Silverberg


Grant Shaud appeared as FYI executive producer Miles Silverberg throughout the first eight seasons and revival. He left the show in 1996 for other opportunities, finding guest spots on The Drew Carey Show, Lois & Clark, The Wild Thornberrys, and Touched by an Angel, among others. He followed these up throughout the 2010s, with gigs on Louie, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Law and Order: SVU, and Younger. He also found time for theater in the 2000s, with roles including After Ashley and Relatively Speaking. After Murphy‘s revival, Shaud appeared in one episode of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel in 2019 and the 2023 film Among the Beasts.

Lily Tomlin — Kay Carter-Shepley

Lily Tomlin’s character replaced Miles as executive producer in season nine. Arguably one of the show’s biggest names, Tomlin has enjoyed an illustrious career dating back to the 1960s. Some of her biggest hits include Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-In, All of Me, Big Business, and 9 to 5. Most recently, she appeared alongside longtime collaborator Jane Fonda on Grace & Frankie and the film 80 for Brady. Possibly due to her late addition to the show, Tomlin was the sole living cast member who did not return for the revival.




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