Pop Culture

Back in the bar! Kirstie Alley reunites with 'Cheers' castmates for new ad

You don't have to have any interest in dropping a few pounds to appreciate Kirstie Alley's latest ad for Jenny Craig.

That's because, in addition to promoting the weight-management brand, the commercial serves as a fan-pleasing mini "Cheers" reunion, too.

Alley stopped by TODAY Tuesday morning and shared the experience that returned her to the role of bar boss Rebecca Howe alongside regulars Cliff Clavin (John Ratzenberger) and Norm Peterson (George Wendt) as though no time had passed since the show's 1993 finale.

"It was amazing," she told Matt Lauer. "When the Jenny Craig people asked me would I do this, I said, 'Yeah, but is the set going to look real?' They assured me it was going to look fantastic. When we walked on that set, it was a cross between 'The Twilight Zone' and [being] in a time machine."

MORE: Kirstie Alley talks 50-pound weight loss: 'This time it's different'

But the real nostalgia value isn't in the décor. It's in the laughs.

Everett Collection
CHEERS, 1982-93, cast shot, Kirstie Alley, Ted Danson, Woody Harrelson, Kelsey Grammer, Rhea Perlman, John Ratzenberger, John Wendt, 1987. Season 5

Cliff looks at Rebecca in the spot and muses that "Last time I saw a beauty like you, I was..."

"Dreaming," Norm finishes the thought for him in the 30-second spot.

"To see those guys sitting there, just as funny as ever," Alley smiled. "I'm sort of the straight man in the commercial, but that's OK. They get the jokes, and they should. I mean, it was like we were right back in it."

Which led her to another thought: "Why don't we just do this again?"

TODAY

Lauer, who puts "Cheers" at the top of his favorite-ever sitcoms list, said "I hope you do it again. I really do."

And Alley was quick to add, "It would be fun!"

Until then, have fun watching to the full interview and hearing what Alley has to say about her weight-loss journey and her racy New Year's resolutions.

Follow Ree Hines on Twitter.

  • Slideshow Photos

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    From 'Star Trek' to 'DWTS,' see photos of Kirstie Alley throughout her career

    Actress Kirstie Alley has been very candid about her life, particularly her struggles with her weight. See highlights throughout her career.

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    'Khan' 'do

    Kirstie Alley played the half-Vulcan officer Saavik in the 1982 movie "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan." Reportedly she was chosen for the role because she resembled "Star Trek" creator Gene Roddenberry's image of what a Vulcan should look like.

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    Alley 'Cat'

    In 1983, Kirstie Alley played Maggie "The Cat" in a stage production of Tennessee Williams' "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" in Los Angeles.

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    Funny bunny

    Kirstie Alley played feminist Gloria Steinem (right) in the 1985 TV-movie "A Bunny's Tale," which was based on Steinem's experiences working as a Playboy Bunny.

  • From 'Star Trek' to 'DWTS,' see photos of Kirstie Alley throughout her career

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    Northern belle

    Kirstie Alley played a member of a prominent Pennsylvania family in "North and South," an acclaimed 1985 TV miniseries set in the Civil War era. The cast also included (from left) Robert Guillaume and David Ogden Stiers.

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    Be of good Cheers

    Alley's star rose with her 1987-1993 role as Rebecca Howe on the long-running sitcom "Cheers." Ted Danson co-starred as barkeeper Sam Malone.

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    Big 'Talking'

    Kirstie Alley co-starred with (from left) John Travolta, Olympia Dukakis and George Segal in the 1989 comedy "Look Who's Talking." The film was a hit and spawned several sequels.

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    Isn't she Lover-ly

    Kirstie Alley appeared with a young Patrick Dempsey in the 1989 comedy film "Loverboy." 

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    Alley and hubby

    Kirstie Alley was married to actor Parker Stevenson from 1983 to 1997. During their marriage, the couple adopted two children.

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    And the Emmy goes to...

    After two previous nominations, Kirstie Alley won an Emmy in 1991 for her work on "Cheers." In her acceptance speech, she famously thanked then-husband Parker Stevenson "for giving me the big one for the last eight years."

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    Blonde Alley

    In the 1996 TV-movie "Suddenly," Kirstie Alley tackled a dramatic role as a waitress who loses the use of her legs in a traffic accident. Jason Beghe co-starred.

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    Out of the 'Closet'

    Kirstie Alley posed for this publicity still for the 1997-2000 TV sitcom "Veronica's Closet." Over the show's run she earned Emmy, Golden Globe and SAG Award nominations in the title role.

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    Fairy enough

    In "Toothless," a 1997 fantasy TV-movie, Kirstie Alley played a dentist who died but then was sent back to Earth as a tooth fairy.

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    Bevy of beauty

    Kirstie Alley (second from left) appeared with (from left) Mindy Sterling, Denise Richards and Sam McMurray in the 1999 comedy "Drop Dead Gorgeous," a spoof about a small-town beauty pageant.

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    With Mom at 'Monsters'

    Kirstie Alley and kids attend the world premiere of animated comedy "Monsters, Inc." at the El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood on Oct. 28, 2001.

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    Shrink rap

    In May 2003, Kirstie Alley led protesters in a march against the American Psychiatric Association in San Francisco. Alley is a member of Scientology, which is opposed to psychiatry.

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    It's Showtime

    In January 2005, Kirstie Alley appeared during the Television Critics Winter Press Tour in Universal City, California, to promote "Fat Actress," a mockumentary-style comedy series on Showtime in which she starred.

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    Revealing moment

    On Nov. 6, 2006, Kirstie Alley appeared in a bikini on "Oprah." She told the daytime host that she had lost 75 pounds.

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    Cover girl

    The headline said it all on the cover of the May 18, 2009 issue of People magazine. "I fell off the horse," the actress revealed in the cover story.

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    Kirstie and her kids

    Kirstie Alley was all smiles as she left Katsuya restaurant in Hollywood on Jan. 14, 2010 with her daughter, Lillie Price, and son, William True.

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    Organic approach

    In January 2010, Kirstie Alley launched Organic Liaison, a USDA-certified organic weight-loss product. A public advocate against obesity, Alley has also appeared in ads for the Jenny Craig weight-loss program.

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    Opening up to Oprah

    Kirstie Alley appeared on "Oprah" in February 2010 to talk about her battle for weight loss. She also talked about her new show, "Kirstie Alley's Big Life," and professed her crush on Jamie Foxx.

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    'Big' star

    Starting in March 2010, the A&E reality series "Kirstie Alley's Big Life" follows the actress as she battles with her weight, launches her own weight-loss company, raises her two children and looks for love.

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    Avast!

    Alley arrives at the premiere of "Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides" on Saturday, May 7, 2011 in Anaheim, Calif.

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    'Dancing' queen

    Kirstie Alley was paired with Maksim Chmerkovskiy in Season 12 of "Dancing With the Stars." The actress made it to the finals of the reality TV competition in 2011.

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    The art of men

    Kirstie Alley attends a signing for her book "The Art of Men" at Barnes & Noble bookstore at the Grove on Nov. 11, 2012 in Los Angeles.

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    New series

    Kirstie Alley and cast in the new sitcom "Kirstie," that centers on Alley as a Broadway star and a new parent. It reunited her with former "Cheers" co-star Rhea Perlman and "Seinfeld" star Michael Richards. The series premiered on Dec. 4, 2013.

  • Kirstie Alley

    From 'Star Trek' to 'DWTS,' see photos of Kirstie Alley throughout her career

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    Looking good

    Kirstie Alley attends the Season 4 premiere of HBO's "Girls" at the American Museum of Natural History in January 2015, in New York. She revealed on the TODAY show that Jenny Craig's weight loss program has helped her keep her weight off.

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