Nickelodeon’s Sam & Cat chronicles the antics and adventures of two roommates who couldn’t be more different, in the tradition of sitcoms like The Odd Couple and Laverne & Shirley. Now the stars of Laverne & Shirley are set to reunite on the Nickelodeon show — Penny Marshall and Cindy Williams taped a guest appearance last week.
The above photo is an EW exclusive peek at the celebrated comedy actresses with Sam & Cat stars Jennette McCurdy and Ariana Grande.
In this episode, Sam and Cat are ordered to rename their babysitting business because the name sounds too similar to Salmon Cat, a TV show Marshall and Williams’ characters created. The girls track down the show’s creators, attempting to resolve their three decades-long feud and to get the rights to use their names for their business.
The episode marks the first time in over 30 years that Williams and Marshall have worked together on a scripted program. Laverne & Shirley, a spin-off of Happy Days, ran for eight seasons, beginning in 1976.
McCurdy, who plays Sam, told EW she watched reruns of Laverne & Shirley on TV Land when she was about 8 years old. She recalled loving Laverne’s tough attitude — a brazen demeanor that is a lot like Sam’s.
“What would Cindy do?” has become a bit of a motto for Grande since she began watching Laverne & Shirley shortly after she started playing Cat on Victorious. “She’s my go-to,” Grande told EW of Williams. “If I don’t know how to play a line, I think, ‘What would she do?’”
When EW visited the set of Sam & Cat last week, the talent behind the show had plenty of enthusiasm on display for getting to work with Williams and Marshall.
“To have the two most classic, most revered, funniest female roommates of all time from TV on the show is a dream come true,” said Sam & Cat creator Dan Schneider. “When I meet these classic TV stars, it’s like I’m a 14-year-old girl meeting the Beatles in the early ’60s. I’m freaking out, wide-eyed, and I try not to cry from excitement.”
The episode guest starring Marshall and Williams is expected to air in the fall. The next new episode of Sam & Cat airs on Nickelodeon on Saturday, July 13 at 8 p.m. PT/ET.