1. Chris’ voice is based on Buffalo Bill from Silence of the Lambs.
Seth Green has mentioned this a few times on Conan and in the commentary for Stewie Griffin: The Untold Story. Chris even recreates the infamous scene from the film.
2. Peter and Brian stemmed from MacFarlane’s 1997 Cartoon Network short Larry & Steve.
3. Family Guy was the first animated program (since The Flintstones) to be nominated for Outstanding Comedy Series at the Emmys.
The series was nominated in 2009.
4. The guy who always calls Peter a “big fat phony” is credited as Holden Caulfield, after the main character of Catcher in the Rye.
5. The Family Guy theme song pays tribute to All in The Family’s.
MacFarlane revealed in commentary that he loved the sitcom and wanted to pay homage to the series.
6. After its second cancellation, over 100,000 fans signed a petition to bring it back on air.
7. Death was originally going to be a theme in every episode.
MacFarlane explained during a press tour that each episode would have a very ominous title borrowed from an old ’40s radio suspense drama that had nothing to do with the show.
8. Seth MacFarlane had a ticket for a 9/11 plane.
Seth told Piers Morgan, “I turned to the guy next to me and said, ‘My God, that was the flight I was supposed to be on.’” He was flying back from giving a speech at his alma mater, and had a ticket for American Airlines Flight 11.
9. American Dad’s Roger, Futurama’s Bender, and Home Movies’ Coach John McGuirk all have cameo appearances in the Star Wars-referencing “It’s a Trap” episode.
11. The main cast makes upwards of $225,000 each per episode.
12. Family Guy has been named the “Worst TV Show of the Week” 44 times by the Parents Television Council.
13. Lois was originally blonde.
14. Quagmire is 66 years old according to his driver’s license.
The gang discovers he was born in 1948 in the episode “FOX-y Lady.”
16. Meg was originally voiced by Lacey Chabert, aka Gretchen Wieners.
After the first season Chabert’s contract expired, and she was replaced with Mila Kunis.
17. The chicken that fights Peter is named Ernie.
Voiced by Danny Smith, Ernie the Big Chicken has been a running joke throughout the show’s history.
18. Every episode includes at least one character saying “what the hell” to another.
19. The creators pick and choose when Stewie can be heard and understood by his family.
MacFarlane admitted the writers go with “whatever’s funny at the time,” at the 2011 Comic-Con.
20. Peter changed Meg’s full name from Megan to Megatron.
21. Bonnie was pregnant for nearly seven years.
She finally had Susie, voiced by Patrick Stewart, in Season 7, Episode 7.
22. William H. Macy auditioned for the role of Brian.
MacFarlane verified this in 2010.
23. Quagmire’s voice is based on radio announcers in the 1940s and ’50s.
MacFarlane told Access Hollywood in 2007 that Quagmire was imagined as an “anachronistic ’50s guy.”
24. Neil Goldman is named after one of the show’s writers.
Goldman never actually contributed to any of the episodes featuring the character.
25. Peter is based on a security guard at MacFarlane’s college.
MacFarlane revealed to HLN he loved his voice and “thick, boisterous” accent.
26. It takes a full year for one episode to get on air.
That being said, they work on multiple episodes at once.
27. Nearly every episode has two versions: one for DVD and one for television.
MacFarlane told Access Hollywood, “We do DVD versions in which you can see the show untouched.”
28. When the show first aired, MacFarlane was the youngest executive producer in all of network television.
He was only 24.
29. Carrie Fisher, aka Princess Leia, is the voice behind Peter’s creepy boss Angela.
30. Adam West actually loves the show.
MacFarlane said in a featurette, “The single most demanded character in Quahog is Adam West.”