Why would Wayne Rogers, who played “Trapper John” McIntyre on “M*A*S*H,” decide to leave the hit show? One cast member offers up a reason.
“Wayne was an absolute delight,” Jamie Farr, who played Cpl. Max Klinger, said in an interview with the Archive of American Television. “He and Alan (Alda) got along fabulously.
“Great rapport that they had with one another,” Farr said. “But then, again, Wayne felt that, hey, it was an ensemble show.”
‘M*A*S*H’ Star Says Rogers Felt Writers Weren’t Focusing On His Character Enough
Farr said Rogers, who died on Dec. 31, 2015, at 82 years old, felt that the writers were going a little too heavy on “Hawkeye” (Alda’s character) and not enough on “Trapper John.” Farr adds that Rogers really wanted to leave and do something else.
“But the two of them were not enemies,” Farr said. “Alan and Wayne, to this day (the interview was done in 2014), they’re still dear friends. It was just a career thing for Wayne to do.”
Rogers appeared on “M*A*S*H” between 1972-75. He also had a three-season run on another CBS sitcom called “House Calls” between 1979-82.
Meanwhile, CBS did an “M*A*S*H” spinoff called “Trapper John, M.D.” that ran for seven seasons. Rogers did not come back and fill his old role. Nope, Pernell Roberts, best known for his time on “Bonanza,” played McIntyre on the show.
Farr, who is 86 years old, also was involved in another spinoff called “After M*A*S*H” with Harry Morgan and William Christopher. Farr played Klinger, Morgan played Col. Sherman Potter, and Christopher played Father Francis Mulcahy. The show, though, just lasted one season.
CBS Show Would Be Place Where Stars Would Appear In Guest-Star Spots
When you watch an “M*A*S*H” rerun, then you might find yourself seeing another familiar actor on there. Not necessarily someone in the show’s cast but another actor from films or even TV.
Actor Brian Dennehy appears in an episode from 1977 alongside Alda, Mike Farrell, Loretta Swit, and other cast members.
Other actors who would become household names to show up on “M*A*S*H” include John Ritter, Bruno Kirby, Patrick Swayze, and Alex Karras.
Dennehy, who died in April 2020, earned six Emmy Awards throughout his career. Ritter, Swayze, Kirby, and Karras also have died since their appearances on the show. Morgan and Christopher also have passed away, too.