'Three's Company' and more Americanized 'Britcoms'

"Family Tools" Pilot: Mixing family with business is "Family Tools" Pilot: Mixing family with business is never easy, and Jack Shea is about to learn that lesson the hard way. When Jack's father, Tony, has a heart attack and is forced to hand over the keys to his beloved handyman business, Jack's eager to finally step up and make his father proud. Unfortunately Jack's past career efforts have been less than stellar, so everyone seems to be waiting for him to fail. Photo Credit: ABC

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ABC's "Family Tools," debuting May 1, stars J.K. Simmons as a retiring handyman who has to turn his business over to his layabout son (Kyle Bornheimer). It's also the latest example of an American comedy to be based on a British TV show, in this case, "White Van Man." Here are five others, all of which became huge hits.

1. ALL IN THE FAMILY -- Based on "Till Death Do Us Part," which focused on the East End's Garnett family, headed by Alf Garnett, a racist, anti-socialist working-class man.

2. SANFORD AND SON -- In "Steptoe and Son," Albert and Harold Steptoe, father-and-son junk collectors (known in Britain as "rag-and-bone men") lived together and spent most of the time arguing with each other.

3. THREE'S COMPANY -- "Man About the House" offered the then-risque premise of two women (also named Chrissy and Jo) sharing their flat with a man, named here Robin Tripp.

4. TOO CLOSE FOR COMFORT -- Based on "Keep It in the Family," about a talented illustrator named Dudley Rush (as opposed to Ted Knight's Henry Rush) whose two daughters move into the vacant downstairs apartment.

5. THE OFFICE -- In the British version, Ricky Gervais starred as David Brent, the clueless general manager of the Slough branch of the Wernham Hogg Paper Co. (He also created the series.)

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