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Old 01-19-2019, 10:13 PM
Jinx Jinx is offline
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Danny Partridge

Several 1970's sit-coms tried so hard to change hair color of an actor/actress to match the rest of a family, like Mike Lookinland's hair in the Brady Bunch. So, why was Danny Bonaduce selected to play "Danny Partridge" with his red hair? Maybe some Partridge fan knows the inside story why this seemed to work for the director or producer. It never really sat right with me, sorry to say.
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Old 01-19-2019, 11:32 PM
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I'm not sure he really played bass, either. Musta had a good agent...
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Old 01-19-2019, 11:41 PM
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Yeah, but the Partridge Family didn't really have a unified look/hair color modeled after their parent like the Brady boys or the Brady girls. For example, David Cassidy and Susan Dey didn't like anything like Shirley Jones.

Personally, I always thought Danny was the result of a fling Mom had with Reuben Kincaid, but YMMV.
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Old 01-19-2019, 11:45 PM
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Are there any examples other than The Brady Bunch where child actors were chosen because their hair color matched their supposed parents' hair color?
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Old 01-20-2019, 12:14 AM
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Ozzie and Harriet. Oh, wait. Those were their real kids.
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Old 01-20-2019, 12:15 AM
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Are there any examples other than The Brady Bunch where child actors were chosen because their hair color matched their supposed parents' hair color?
Not sure if this counts but I just some some behind the scenes type thing on Home Improvement. Before Patricia Richardson (Jill, the mom) was hired, there was a different mom on board. She had blonde hair, as did the kids. When Jill was hired, the kids were concerned they would lose their jobs because people might question why two brunette parents have three blonde kids.

I don't recall if the kids were hired because of their hair color, but there was some concern that they could be fired over it.

If nothing else, it shows that some thought goes into hair color.
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Old 01-20-2019, 12:25 AM
SpoilerVirgin SpoilerVirgin is offline
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One of my favorite stories involves children, although not child actors. In the original pilot of Numbers, Len Cariou (currently Tom Selleck's Dad on Blue Bloods) played the Dad, and Gabriel Macht played the FBI agent brother. Then they cast David Krumholtz as the math genius brother. Suddenly the rest of the family just didn't look right at all, and the other parts were recast with the very Jewish Judd Hirsch and Rob Morrow.
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Old 01-20-2019, 12:35 AM
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The drummer kid on Brady was recast with a blond boy. Most people think of red and blond on the same spectrum. Plus Bonaduce was hired for his attitude (onscreen, not off.)
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Old 01-20-2019, 01:58 AM
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red hair can be recessive, so it pops up even though the parents both may have dark hair.
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Old 01-20-2019, 08:09 AM
Horatio Hellpop Horatio Hellpop is offline
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The drummer kid on Brady was recast with a blond boy. Most people think of red and blond on the same spectrum. Plus Bonaduce was hired for his attitude (onscreen, not off.)
Partridge, not Brady. When Jeremy Gelbwaks was booted from the show, his family came east and he wound up at my elementary school for a little over a year. Tough break, but that show did not launch many distinguished careers, so maybe he dodged a bullet.
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Old 01-20-2019, 08:20 AM
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Real families have variety in hair colors. Why wouldn't TV families?
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Old 01-20-2019, 09:28 AM
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Are there any examples other than The Brady Bunch where child actors were chosen because their hair color matched their supposed parents' hair color?
Do the Farkles count?
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Old 01-20-2019, 09:41 AM
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Maybe a stretch to call it "casting", but my favorite story about Gilligan's Island is that in most of the cartoon versions Ginger is drawn as a platinum blonde, because the producers were afraid that if she was drawn as a redhead Tina Louise might sue them for using her image.
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Old 01-20-2019, 11:08 AM
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red hair can be recessive, so it pops up even though the parents both may have dark hair.
This was actually the topic of one episode, in which Danny was convinced he was adopted. It was explained that he had very blond hair when he was a baby.
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Old 01-20-2019, 11:41 AM
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Red hair occurs in every culture, in every race, all over the world. A blonde man and a brown haired woman gave red-haired twins. One of them has a buzz cut, the other his hair looks almost exactly like bright orange yarn atop his head.
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Old 01-20-2019, 12:01 PM
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A friend of mine has a mother who's a super-fair blonde and a father who's a flaming redhead. His oldest sister is a pale blonde like their mother, the next sister is a flaming redhead like their father... and his hair is so dark it's almost black (and yes, he does resemble his father in other ways).

It took me a long time to figure out the genetics of that one.
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Old 01-20-2019, 12:13 PM
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red hair can be recessive, so it pops up even though the parents both may have dark hair.
Hair color is also one of those things that has multiple genes controlling it. One theory I've read say it's mainly controlled by a brown vs blonde gene, and a non-red vs red gene, with blonde and red being the recessive genes. That said, this study suggests that it's even more complicated than that, with it being possible for two red heads to have a non-red headed child, which wouldn't be possible if only those two genes controlled hair color, and if blond and red were recessive.

Of course, this is the reverse case of the Partridge family. In that case, it should be easier to get a red head out of the mix.

At any rate, I've never noticed or paid attention to the color of the children's hair in TV shows and movies and, well, to be honest, real life. My aunt and uncle both have very dark brown hair. All three of their kids are blondes. Since brown hair is dominant, this isn't anywhere near as rare as the reverse: two blondes having a brown-haired baby. From what I've researched, it is possible (though quite rare), even though a simple Punnett square would suggest it isn't, suggesting that hair color is a more complex process than high school biology class would have you believe.
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Old 01-20-2019, 12:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Jinx View Post
Several 1970's sit-coms tried so hard to change hair color of an actor/actress to match the rest of a family, like Mike Lookinland's hair in the Brady Bunch. So, why was Danny Bonaduce selected to play "Danny Partridge" with his red hair? Maybe some Partridge fan knows the inside story why this seemed to work for the director or producer. It never really sat right with me, sorry to say.
"Game of Thrones" hadn't been written yet.
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Old 01-20-2019, 03:03 PM
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Quoth pulykamell:

That said, this study suggests that it's even more complicated than that, with it being possible for two red heads to have a non-red headed child, which wouldn't be possible if only those two genes controlled hair color, and if blond and red were recessive.
Depends on what the non-red color is. Two redheads having a blond child is no more difficult to explain than two brown-haired parents with a blond child.
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Old 01-20-2019, 03:58 PM
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Dont forget that Mrs Partridge dyed her hair so we dont really know the real color, and in several eps it was strawberry blonde so she could have been a natural redhead! And her maiden name is Renfrew so there's Scots blood in the family.

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Old 01-20-2019, 04:00 PM
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...but my favorite story about Gilligan's Island is that in most of the cartoon versions ...
Wait! What? There are cartoon versions of GI?

How do I not know this?
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Old 01-20-2019, 04:15 PM
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Wait! What? There are cartoon versions of GI?

How do I not know this?
The New Adventures of Gilligan

Gilligan's Planet
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Old 01-20-2019, 04:53 PM
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I'm not sure he really played bass, either. Musta had a good agent...
Not only that, but the only two actors who did their own singing were Shirley Jones and David Cassidy.

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Partridge, not Brady. When Jeremy Gelbwaks was booted from the show, his family came east and he wound up at my elementary school for a little over a year. Tough break, but that show did not launch many distinguished careers, so maybe he dodged a bullet.
You may have that backwards; his father got a job outside of the Los Angeles area, which is why he had to leave the show. At least, that's how TV Guide reported it when it happened.
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Old 01-20-2019, 05:33 PM
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You may have that backwards; his father got a job outside of the Los Angeles area, which is why he had to leave the show. At least, that's how TV Guide reported it when it happened.
It seems possible that that was spin control on the part of the studio or network. As per Wikipedia's entry on Gelbwaks:

Quote:
Gelbwaks was the first actor to play the role of Chris Partridge. He left the program (and the business) after the first season, and was replaced by Brian Forster in the summer of 1971. According to his Partridge Family co-star David Cassidy, Gelbwaks "had a personality conflict with every person in the cast, particulary himself and Danny Bonaduce, and with the producers". In a 2005 interview with the Television Academy Foundation, Shirley Jones mentioned that Gelbwaks "was not happy doing [the show] .. his parents wanted him to do it, so we replaced him".

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Old 01-20-2019, 05:53 PM
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It seems possible that that was spin control on the part of the studio or network.
As these old pop culture threads often do, this one took me down a rabbit hole of wiki links and beyond. Reading interviews with Suzanne Crough and Brian Forster from the early 2000's it is clear that for whatever reasons Gelbwaks was pretty much universally disliked. According to the former it had gotten to the point where either he or Bonaduce HAD to go because the larger and older Bonaduce had gotten sufficiently provoked to start physically picking on him. And since Bonaduce was the breakout star and Gelbwaks and his mother were a royal pain in the ass, the move back East( which was real, but needn't have caused the end of his career on the show )was an excellent excuse to write him out.

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Old 01-20-2019, 06:07 PM
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My Daddy has a strong red gene. Most of my sibs are blond, one strawberry blond brother. Mr.Wrekkers family has a strong red gene. He has a light complexion with formally blond hair ( now white-grey). I'm am very pale, blond haired. 2 of my kids are pale blonds. My middle daughter has a ruddy complexion and brownish-red hair. So you can never tell where that red will pop-up. I so wanted a real redheaded kid, with freckles. I blame my middle daughter for the outrage. She would say "Thats par for the course, I get blamed for everything!"
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Old 01-20-2019, 07:55 PM
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The job on the east coast (at Reston's US Geological Survey, then under construction) was real. My impression was that his dad would not have taken it if he weren't getting booted from the show. I don't think he was ready for the rigors of a hit show that he was only a very minor part of.
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Old 01-20-2019, 11:49 PM
Earl Snake-Hips Tucker Earl Snake-Hips Tucker is offline
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There was a TV-movie about "The Partridge Family" that Danny Bonaduce was involved with, and was told from his point of view. In the movie, and in real life, Danny was close to Dave Madden/Reuben Kincaid. In the TVM, [the actor playing] and Danny have this conversation:

Madden: You know why we were cast?
Bonaduce: Yeah, because we're funny.
Madden: No, because we look funny. Look at the other cast members, and then look at us.
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Old 01-21-2019, 12:00 AM
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Depends on what the non-red color is. Two redheads having a blond child is no more difficult to explain than two brown-haired parents with a blond child.
Well, presumably the two-gene theory would have to have two recessive blonde genes and two recessive red genes for both parents, so the only possibility would be to have a child with a recessive blond and recessive red genes, hence a red-head. A blonde would have to have two recessive blonde genes, and a dominant non-red hair gene from one of the parents.

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Old 01-22-2019, 10:04 PM
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Are there any examples other than The Brady Bunch where child actors were chosen because their hair color matched their supposed parents' hair color?
To answer your question, yes, but who? I cannot recall. (Ok, ok, not a sit-com, but...) Oh, I know! One if not both boys selected to act in "Big"! I was reading some behind the scenes tidbits on Big recently shortly after directer Penny Marshall's passing. And, also, not being able to sleep one night, I popped in the DVD...which led me to read-up on the making of this movie.

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Old 01-22-2019, 10:07 PM
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My wife says she always thought Danny was cast to have such wild hair to match his character, an ever-scheming, impetus, wild, redheaded child! Maybe that IS what the director was going for...like scheming "Lucy Ricardo" and her cartoon alter-ego, wild "Woody Woodpecker"!
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Old 01-22-2019, 10:29 PM
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Are there any examples other than The Brady Bunch where child actors were chosen because their hair color matched their supposed parents' hair color?
Not exactly a "child" actor but when Beverly Owen left The Munsters after 13 episodes, she was replaced by Pat Priest. Priest not only had the same hair color, she also wore the same size clothes as Owen, so they could use the same wardrobe.

And six different actresses (seven, counting the pilot) played the three daughters on Petticoat Junction, but there was always a blonde, a brunette, and a redhead.

TVTropes has a page on Separated at Birth Casting, which includes some parent-child examples.
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Old 01-22-2019, 10:51 PM
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And six different actresses (seven, counting the pilot) played the three daughters on Petticoat Junction, but there was always a blonde, a brunette, and a redhead.
What would you expect on a show about a small town brothel with a rather obvious name in the middle of bumfuck nowhere but somehow a stop on the local railroad? Where there's always a blonde, a brunette and a redhead even when they're different girls than last time?

Did you think those young women were 'accidentally' swimming naked in the water tower as the train came in?
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Old 01-24-2019, 09:24 PM
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Thanks for sharing your thoughts, all!
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Old 01-25-2019, 07:35 AM
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Perhaps Mrs. Partridge wasn't always faithful to her husband.
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Old 01-25-2019, 09:31 AM
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What about Full House? Danny has dark hair, his wife Pam had dark hair, her brother Jesse hadsdark hair. Yet the three girls have blonde hair, just like Danny's best friend Joey.

What conclusions can you draw from that?
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Old 01-25-2019, 09:56 AM
pulykamell pulykamell is online now
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What about Full House? Danny has dark hair, his wife Pam had dark hair, her brother Jesse hadsdark hair. Yet the three girls have blonde hair, just like Danny's best friend Joey.

What conclusions can you draw from that?
Well, if both parents carry a dominant and recessive gene for dark hair, that's about a one-in-sixty-four chance, roughly (like we said before, the genetics is a little more complicated with hair color, but this should be a decent first-order approximation.) So not all that crazy. As I wrote previously, have a set of cousins just like this: parents both dark hair, three kids all light hair, and they all look like their father, at least to me.

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Old 01-25-2019, 11:03 AM
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What about Modern Family? DeDe and Claire are blonde, Jay has brown hair. . . and then there's Mitchell.
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Old 01-25-2019, 12:55 PM
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Personally, I always thought Danny was the result of a fling Mom had with Reuben Kincaid, but YMMV.
Um, actually...

Fans will know that Shirley didn't meet Reuben until the first episode. Danny was about 11 at the time, and in fact, he introduced the two adults to one another.
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Old 01-25-2019, 05:57 PM
Horatio Hellpop Horatio Hellpop is offline
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What would you expect on a show about a small town brothel with a rather obvious name in the middle of bumfuck nowhere but somehow a stop on the local railroad? Where there's always a blonde, a brunette and a redhead even when they're different girls than last time?

Did you think those young women were 'accidentally' swimming naked in the water tower as the train came in?
I'm trying to decide whether you've ruined my childhood, or enhanced it somehow.
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