Teenagers With Attitude (and Spandex): Behind the Scenes of the "Mighty Morphin Power Rangers"

Off-Screen Drama

Spending almost every day and night with someone for three years will surely bring you closer to that person. That's what happened with the cast of the Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers, which ran from 1993 to 1996. With a set like a high school, the Rangers spent their downtime pranking each other and having sleepovers.

However, it wasn't always fun and games. The cast's closeness, coupled with the physical toll taken by an increase in shooting, often created tension when the cameras stopped rolling.

Levy: Power Rangers became a big challenge because it was so successful that we went to daily episodes instead of weekly. There were lot of scripts to go through and a lot of production teams working at the same time. Because of the costumes, we were allowed to put a lot of stunt people inside the costumes and shoot parallel scenes with or without the actual cast, although the actual cast was capable of doing a lot of their own stunts and action. They were cast for that very reason. 

 

I remember the night of the huge earthquake in '94, Thuy had slept over my house and we both woke up to the sound of a giant train coming in my apartment. —Amy Jo Johnson

 

Johnson: There was a lot of fun and drama, and everything you can expect from a bunch of 20-year-olds. Those were some of my most fun party years. It helped with the morphin' times!

David and I are still great friends. Thuy, who played the Yellow Ranger, and I would have sleep overs. I remember the night of the huge earthquake in '94, Thuy had slept over my house and we both woke up to the sound of a giant train coming in my apartment. We hid under a doorway. It was crazy! I miss that chickie.

Frank: We would joke with each other. We all had a good time. You have to understand it's, like, six kids, 18-24. I think Walter was 27 at the time; David was 24; and I was 17. It's like taking a bunch of people, kids and adults, and putting them in a house and making them live with each other six days a week, 12-14 hour days. Everybody got on each other's nerves sometimes.

Me, Johnny Bosch (the succeeding Black Ranger), and Steve Cardenas (the succeeding Red Ranger) had fun on set. Steve Cardenas is a real martial artist. He has a black belt in Brazilian jiujitsu. When he came on, I really liked it because I knew his history and where he came from. We would always mess around with karate moves, and mess around with Amy and everybody. 

Fielding: I would run into the Rangers infrequently in the voice studio whenever they would come in to dub some lines of dialogue for the fight scenes. During the first couple of seasons, all of the fight footage was from the original Japanese production. They had to come in there and do the old "Hiya, hiya" sounds on a separate track.

I got to go out to the Power Rangers set one time and had a tour around the Juice Bar and the school for Angel Grove, but I didn't actually hang out with the Rangers or know them on a personal basis.

Goodson: We recorded in Valencia, so I was on set a few times. We’d see each other in the recording sessions. I would bump into everybody except Carla. I think she kind of wished she could do my stuff, and I kind of wished I could do her stuff. We used to nod and wave to each other.

The Rangers were very close. They got to be like high school friends, just like they were on the show. I know they pranked each other. I see Walter, Jason, and David at conventions. I’m like the other side of the family, not the close end, but we do know each other, and so we hug and kiss and say hello. They are way more connected to each other. It was a good atmosphere.

There were things, of course, that everyone wanted—more money—and Saban wanted to make all the profits and not be as generous as we wanted them to be. [Laughs.

Wasserman: I only hung out with all of them one day. They were in the studio and honestly they didn't give a shit. They couldn't have cared less about the music. The show was so massive and their egos were so off the charts about it. They couldn't go anywhere; their lives had changed drastically.

I hung out with Jason and Paul Schrier, who played the resident bully, Bulk, a couple of times. Those guys are great. No ego, very funny and very, very smart. They're the only two. The rest of them, no. Plus, it was obvious—they weren't doing Saving Private Ryan. They were just being beaten to death working seven days a week. And time has spoken for itself; unfortunately none of them have really gone on to do anything huge.

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