Saturday, July 18, 2020

Y&R Report (July 18, 2020): The Latest on The Young and the Restless

  

Hey Y&R fans, every second Saturday TV Banter discusses the latest happenings and provides commentary on your favourite daytime drama. Note to U.S. readers - SPOILER ALERT: Here in Canada, I watch the show on Global TV which is one episode ahead of CBS.  I will inevitably refer to incidents you haven't seen yet. Read at your own risk.  If you are the curious type, though, you may prefer to discover some things in advance. 

Hi fans,

It looks as if we won't be watching throwback episodes much longer.   The Young and the Restless was given the green light to resume production beginning on July 13th.  The show's return to production was originally targeted for July 9th, but was delayed a week due to concern over an increase in positive COVID-19 tests in the state of California.  Although COVID cases are spiking again in California, CBS decided to go ahead with the filming anyway.

There have been recent online reports about Michelle Stafford (Phyllis) and Eric Braeden (Victor Newman) preparing to go back to work.  Online websites such as Soap Dirt, published photos of Eric before and after a haircut.  Eric seemed just as feisty as ever.  He was ready to return to work and he even joked about how Victor might get back at Adam and Jack and, of course, Billy Boy.Abbott.

Eric eventually confirmed that The Young and the Restless actually began taping scenes on Tuesday, July 14th.  He tweeted "We are mostly shooting outside, have no contact with anyone from makeup, wardrobe etc."

So, when will new episodes be back on the air?  According to Y&R spoilers, it should take about four to six weeks.  Y&R's sister show, The Bold and the Beautiful, will begin airing new episodes on Monday, July 20th on CBS, and B&B began filming new episodes a month prior to that date.  Keep in mind, however, that Y&R has a larger cast and more storylines than B&B.  It may take longer for Y&R to prepare.


Well, this week was Baldwin//Fisher week on Y&R.  It focused on brothers Michael Baldwin (Christian LeBlanc) and Kevin Fisher (Greg Rikaart) and their irrepressible mother, Gloria.  Christian LeBlanc provided the introduction to the weeks episode and I was absolutely stunned by his appearance.  He was barely recognizable and I did a double take when I saw him.  His hair was white and he had a white beard.  I wasn't surprised that he dyed his hair, but I didn't realize it had turned white.  I expect that he's dyed his hair again now that production of Y&R has started again.

Coming up is a week of "fan favourites"or episodes requested by popular demand.  I'm pleased about that.  However, I wish Y&R had shown fan requests much sooner and I hope that they will air more of them.  In fact, I would be very content if CBS only broadcast the most requested old episodes until the return of new ones. I urge viewers to let the network  know what you want.  If you let your voice be heard loudly enough, they will listen.

The "fan favourites" week starts off with Y&R's premiere episodes from March 26 and March 27, 1973.  I have already viewed them on Global TV.  At that time, Y&R was only a half-hour long.  The show did not expand to an hour until February 4, 1980.  As regular readers of Y&R Report know, I have been eagerly waiting to view episodes from the 1970s.  I was delighted that it finally happened.  It was so much fun to see the first episodes with Tom Hallick as the mysterious Brad Elliot, the Brooks sisters, Brenda Dickson as the original Jill, William Gay Espy as Snapper Foster and Robert Colbert as newspaper publisher Stuart Brooks (Colbert is now 88 years old).  Stuart Brooks turned out to be the grandfather of current Y&R character Theo Vanderway (Tyler), the result of a youthful tryst with Dina Abbott Mergeron.

Y&R's sets in the 1970s were completely different than they are now.  There was no Crimson Lights or Newman ranch.  It was interesting to see how much the show has change in 47 years.  The only character remaining from those first 1973 episodes is Jill, but she is now being played by Jess Walton.

The 1970s episodes will be followed by a 1984 episode in which Katherine Chancellor undergoes a facelift, as Jeanne Cooper did in real life.  Then we will see a 1993 episode about newlyweds Drucilla (Victoria Rowell) and Neil (Kristoff St. James) as they celebrate with family and friends.  After that, we will be shown a 2008 episode with singer Katy Perry at Restless Style magazine.  The week will conclude with the 2015 episode of Devon and Hilary's wedding.


VIEWER FORUM

If you have any comments on Y&R, please email them to me with "Viewer Forum" in the subject line. I will be happy to publish your comments and reply to them  You do not have to use your real name. 
My email address:  jmadden16@yahoo.ca

l received an email from longtime viewer Carly from Barrhaven, Ontario.  Carly made the following comments:

I am happy to hear that Y&R has been given the green light to start filming again.  I am not enjoying the old reruns as I thought I would.

Well Carly, I have enjoyed many of the throwback episodes, but I could have done without some of the more recent ones.  They are far too fresh in my mind.  I am certainly looking forward to watching new episodes.


CAST NEWS

Rumours of Michael Damian's return as Danny Romalotti

1990 photo of Michael Damien.  Credit: Alan Light

Michael Damian last appeared as Danny Romalotti back in 2013, seven years ago.  Now there is speculation on the Soaps.com website about his possible return.  The speculation has been sparked by Michael's recent activity on Twitter.  It seems that he has been engaging with his social media followers, many of whom have been clamouring for his return as rock singer, Danny Romalotti.  Recently he shared an article on Twitter referring to negotiations between him and and the show's higher ups, suggesting that he may indeed return.  Was Michael just teasing or is there a real possibility of his return?  Why wouldn't he have squelched the rumours if there was no chance of him coming back to Y&R?

Michael's character, Danny, played an integral part in Y&R storylines for many years, as many fans can attest to, especially after viewing throwback episodes of the show.  In the past, Danny has been involved with Cricket, Lauren and Phyllis.  He's been married to both Cricket and Phyllis, and he once married Traci to support her through a pregnancy by Professor Tim Sullivan.

Phyllis falsely led Danny to believe that he was the father of her child.  Danny then married Phyllis and raised Daniel as his son.  When Phyllis finally learned the truth, he was livid, but still considered himself to be Daniel's father.  Daniel has a daughter named Lucy, which makes Danny and Phyllis grandparents.  Yikes!


Y&R REPORT READERS' POLL

How do you feel about rumours that Michael Damian may return to Y&R as Danny Romalotti?  Do you think it would it be a good idea?  Fans, respond to the poll below and let me know.


How do you feel about the possibility of Michael Damian (Danny) returning to Y&R?

I hope it happens. It would be fun to see what they would do with Danny now.
I could do without it. He's been long gone and his return would add nothing to current storylines.
He should only come back if they have a good storyline ready for him.
I don't know.
Other
Please Specify:
Made with Poll Creator


That's all for now.  Please remember that the next edition of Y&R Report will appear in this space on Saturday, August 1, 2020.

Take care and stay safe.

- Joanne

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

The Life and Times of Sanford and Son's Demond Wilson


"You can't say that Sanford and Son was dramatic, was serious.  It was foolishness.  I didn't watch it then, and I don't watch it now."

- Demond Wilson
Jet magazine, 1985 interview

When he was almost 40 years of age, Demond Wilson, the actor, turned his back on Hollywood and became Reverend Demond Wilson, a fire and brimstone evangelist.  Demond is best known for his portrayal of Los Angeles junk dealer Lamont Sanford in the 1970s sitcom Sanford and Son,  In the 1980s, however, he left the entertainment business behind to become a fundamentalist preacher.

Grady Demond Wilson was born on October 13, 1946 in Valdosta, Georgia.  He was raised in New York City, where his mother Laura, was a dietitian and his father was a tailor.  Demond studied dancing and ballet.and he made his Broadway debut when he was four.  When he was 12, he danced at Harlem's famed Apollo Theater.  Around that time, his appendix ruptured and he almost died.  After his youthful brush with death, he vowed to serve God in some ministerial capacity when he reached adulthood.

Demond was raised as a Catholic and he was an altar server, but he always spent summer vacation with his Pentecostal grandmother in Georgia.  She was a very religious woman and brought him to Pentecostal services.  At 14, Demond seriously considered the priesthood, but eventually chose a career in acting. 

Beginning in 1966, Demond served a 13-month tour of duty in the United States Army.  He was a member of the 4th Infantry Division in Vietnam, where he was wounded.  Upon his return to civilian life, he was featured in several Broadway and off-Broadway stage productions.  He then moved to Hollywood where he began appearing in television guest spots.  He played Horace, a house burglar, in a 1971 episode of All in the Family entitled "Edith Writes a Song" (Season 2, Episode 4, Air Date : October 9, 1971).  He also had a guest role as Simmons in a 1971 episode of Mission Impossible entitled "Underwater" (Season 6, Episode 8, Airdate: November 6, 1971).

It wasn't long before Demond was cast in  a co-starring role on Sanford and Son, the show the would make him a bonafide television star.  Sanford and Son was produced by Norman Lear.  It was Lear's second major hit after All in the Family, and like All in the Family, Sandford and Son was based on a popular British comedy.  It was an American version of Steptoe and Son, a BBC sitcom about a father-and-son rag-and-bone business in London.

Sanford and Son ran for six seasons on the NBC network.  It debuted on on January 14, 1972 and chronicled the lives of Lamont Sanford and his father, Fred, partners in a junk dealing  business in L.A.'s Watts district.  Redd Foxx portrayed Fred G. Sanford, a crusty 60-something widower, who was often verbally abusive toward hi son.  The 30-something Lamont was far more progressive than Fred, who was satisfied with being a junk dealer and really didn't want to change his lifestyle.

In 1974, Redd Foxx left Sanford and Son due to a disagreement over salary.. His character was written out and Demond became the main  focus of the series for a while.  Redd returned the next season after the dispute was settled.  The show continued until its cancellation in 1977.

Below is a 1972 photo of Demond Wilson and Redd Foxx as Lamont and Fred Sanford.


After  the finish of its sixth season in March of 1977, Sanford and Son came to an end, not because of low ratings, but because Redd Foxx accepted an offer from ABC to host his own variety show Demond could have continued without Foxx, but he refused to do so without an increase in salary.  NBC turned down Demond's request for a raise and he decided to leave the series too.

Redd Foxx's variety show lasted less than a year.  Three years later, Red returned to NBC with a new comedy called Sanford.  Demond did not appear on this show, so his character, Lamont, was said to be away working on the Alaskan pipeline.  In the new series, Fred Sanford was still running his L.A. junkyard, but there was a new cast of characters surrounding him. Unfortunately for Redd, his Sanford revival failed to attract viewers and the series was short-lived.

After leaving Sanford and Son, Demond Wilson starred in a new sitcom for CBS called Baby..I'm Back.  He portrayed a compulsive gambler named Raymond Ellis who abandons his wife Olivia (Denise Nicholas) and their two children and movies to California.  Seven years later, Ray discovers that Olivia has declared him legally dead and that she is engaged to another man.  He decides to return and try to win her back.

Baby...I'm Back was short-lived.  The pilot was filmed in 1977 and the series aired between January and May of 1978.   It was cancelled despite decent ratings.  Below is a photo of Demond in a scene with Denise Nicholas in Baby...I'm Back.



Demond guest-starred in two episodes of The Love Boat, the first in 1979 and the second in 1981.  In 1981, he also appeared in an episode of Today's F.B.I.  From 1982 to 1983, he co-starred with the late Ron Glass in an African-American remake of the TV series based on Neil Simon's play, The Odd Couple, about  two divorced men who share a New York apartment.  The show was called The New Odd Couple and Glass played the role of the fastidious Felix Unger, while Demond portrayed scruffy Oscar Madison.

Below is a photo of Demond Wilson (left) and  Ron Glass as Felis and Oscar in The New Odd Couple


After he became a preacher, Demond did not stay away from acting completely and he continued  to appear on TV talk shows.  From 2004 to 2005, his portrayed of Kevin Miles in four episodes of the long-running sitcom Girlfriend. and he made numerous appearances on the Praise the Lord (PTL) TV program.  In addition, he toured with Nina Nicole in a production of the play The Measure of a Man.


On May 3, 1974., Demond Wilson married Cicely Loise Johnston, a former flight attendant who later became a model.  They have six children:The four eldest are named Nicole, Melissa, Christopher and Demond Jr.  As of this writing, Demond and Cicely have been wed for 46 years.

Demond and Cicely

At the height of his Hollywood career, Demond Wilson was earning $40,000 a week.  He lived in a 27-room Bel-Air mansion and owned a Rolls Royce.  He also had a very expensive cocaine habit and a troubled marriage.  He felt very alone at the time.

In a 1985 interview with Jet Magazine, Demond was very candid about t his addiction to heroin and how he didn't enjoy his work on Sanford and Son.  He said the following  "I had had it after the third year of Sanford and Son.  Nothing was real.  When you come into the newness of things, your first luxury car, your first Mercedes, your first house.  All of those things seem exciting and thrilling.  But after they wear off, you're faced with reality, and that reality is that your life is empty.  I had worked all those years gearing myself for stardom but thing that I failed to do was have a life.  I barely knew my wife and children."

In the interview, Demond revealed that before he arrived in California, he was on heroin.  He stated that when he came home from Vietnam, he was also on heroin.  He admitted that while filming a movie in Canada called The Dealing (1970)he was using the drug then too.

However, Demond's life changed in March of 1983, after the cancellation of The New Old Couple. He experienced a spiritual awakening and spent the following eight months praying and reading the Bible.  He tried  improve himself and turn his life around.  He set out to repair the damage that his acting career, and the infidelities that went along with it, had done to his marriage.  He moved his family away from Bel-Air and "that plastic atmosphere of Hollywood."

In the fall of 1984, Demond Wilson was ordained as an interdenominational minister.  Since then, he has been on the gospel circuits,  He has appeared at large auditoriums with an entourage consisting of a secretary, two body guards, a five-piece band and up to eight singers.

Despite his disdain for Sanford and Son, Demond willingly acknowledged in a 1986 interview with the Los Angeles Times that "I wouldn't be attracting thousands of people to my crusades without the name recognition that show gave me."

More recent photo of Demond Wilson

END NOTES

* Redd Foxx passed away on October 11, 1991 after suffering a massive heart attack while on a break from rehearsals on the set of The Royal Family, his  new sitcom with friend and co-star Della Reese. He was 68 years old at the time of his death.

* In 1995, Demond Wilson founded the Restoration House to help rehabilitate former prison inmates.

* In 2009, Demond Wilson released a book entitled Second Banana: Bittersweet Memoir of Sanford and Son, about the behind-the-scenes happening on the show.  Demond is also the author if several children's stories and a book called The New Age Millennium: An Expose of Symbols, Slogans and Hidden Agenda, which is highly critical of the New Age Movement.





SOURCES: Jet magazine, "Demond Wilson, Of 'Sanford & Son' Tells Why He Quit TV To Become A Preacher," by Clarence Waldron, February 11, 1985; Los Angeles Times, '''Sanford and Son' to Evangelist, Ex-TV Star Demond Wilson Turns to Religious Calling," by  Doug Brown, October 13, 1986; TV Over Mind (TV OM, www.tvovermind), "Whatever Happened to Demond Wilson?" by Tom Foster; AmoMama website, "Demond Wilson of 'Sanford and Son' Is an Evangelist Now-Ups and Downs of His Life," by Pedro Marrero, May 25, 2020; Wikipedia; Internet Movie Database (IMDb)


- Joanne

Saturday, July 4, 2020

Y&R Report (July 4, 2020): The Latest on The Young and the Restless

  

Hey Y&R fans, every second Saturday TV Banter discusses the latest happenings and provides commentary on your favourite daytime drama. Note to U.S. readers - SPOILER ALERT: Here in Canada, I watch the show on Global TV which is one episode ahead of CBS.  I will inevitably refer to incidents you haven't seen yet. Read at your own risk.  If you are the curious type, though, you may prefer to discover some things in advance. 

Hi fans,

There will be new episodes of The Young and the Restless.  We just don't know exactly when.  I'm sorry to report that there's a bump on the road to the show's return to production.  Until now, Y&R had been targeting a July 6th return.  That tentative start date has been pushed back to July 13th due to a surge in COVID-19 cases in California.  There has been increasing concern about the number of positive coronavirus tests in the Golden State and Y&R has been forced to push back the date that it had hoped to resume production for at least a week, until July 13th.  However, if the situation doesn't improve, the start date could be pushed back even further.

According to Soap Central, Y&R executives reportedly sent out a letter to the soap's cast and crew, informing them of their plan to return to production.  It was stressed that the original July 6th date was only a goal.  It was not written in stone.  However, Y&R's sister soap, The Bold and the Beautiful has returned to production, after a brief delay for testing, and is not expected to change it's production schedule.


Well, we've just been treated to five bygone episodes of the romance between Paul Williams and Christine "Cricket" Blair.  We've watched "The Bug and Clueless Week" (It must have really bothered Cricket when Phyllis nicknamed her "The Bug," because she soon began calling herself "Christine").  My favourite episode of the week was the 1994 episode in which Mary Williams made a surprise appearance at Cricket's lingerie bridal shower.  Poor Mary had no idea it was a lingerie shower and her gift to her future daughter-in-law was a toaster.

Coming up is a week of "summer fun" episodes:

I've already seen the first one on Global TV.  It's a July 1999 episode in which Victor and Nikki host a party at the Newman ranch to celebrate the adoption of Cassie by Nick and Sharon.

This will be followed by a July 2005 episode in which Gloria hosts an Abbott family barbecue for family and friends.

Next will be an August 2000 episode featuring two couplw, Michael (Christian LeBlanc and Phyllis (Michelle Stafford) and Brittany (Lauren Woodland) and Billy (played by David Tom), who cause a splash.

Then there will be an episode that was originally scheduled for June, 9, 2020 on CBS.  It was cancelled due to a news event.  It's a 2001 episode in which Nick surprises Sharon with a romantic overture.

The final summer episode will involve romance and intrigue surrounding a carnival in Genoa City.  It was originally shown on July 2019.


What changes are in store for Y&R fans when news episodes are finally shown?  The writers have had plenty of time to prepare future storylines and scripts, so they have probably created some twists and turns in order to improve ratings.  According to some spoilers from Soap Dirt, viewers can expect some huge couple shakeups.  If the predictions are right (they were leaked from a CBS source), then only Victor and Nikki will remain solid.  That's really not surprising, since there is no need to break them up.  The Soap Dirt spoilers also predict that Phyllis and Nick may be the first couple to call it quits and that the reason for their split  may very well  involve Chelsea.  Chelsea and Adam are not expected to last.  It's a safe bet that Adam will find out about Sharon's cancer and go running to her.  He's got to find our eventually and there's a reason why he still doesn't know.  Chelsea will not be too pleased about Adam's close ties with Sharon, so she may turn to Nick once again. 

If Sharon and Adam get together, where does that leave Rey Rosales (Jordi Vilasuso)?   He'll be left out in the cold.  There are rumours that he may even leave the show.  As for Phyllis, if she loses Nick, she may eventually reunite with Jack Abbott.  There will also likely be a new love interest for Victoria Newman, who is unattached at this time.


DID YOU KNOW that the story about Neil and Drucilla adopting foster child Devon was an idea that came from Victoria Rowell, who played Drucilla?  Victoria herself grew up in foster care.



DAYTIME EMMY AWARDS 2020



This year, due to the pandemic, we watched the Daytime Emmys@home.  I missed seeing a live show and it would have been great to see the red carpet interviews, but it was just not feasible this year.  Nevertheless, I thought the show was well done and I enjoyed it immensely.  I was also pleased that awards returned to network TV.  Thank you, CBS.  I hope that next year, there will be a live broadcast again.

Here are the Y&R Daytime Emmy winners:


Jason Thompson won for Lead Actor in a Drama Series for his portrayal of Billy Abbott.



Byrton James (Devon Hamilton) received an Emmy in the category of Supporting Actor in a Drama Series.


Eva LaRue won for Guest Performance in a Drama Series.  She played Celeste Rosales, mother of Lola, Arturo and Rey.

The Young and the Restless took home the Daytime Emmy award for best Drama Series.


That was a pretty good Daytime Emmy showing for Y&R.


Y&R REPORT READERS' POLL

There will be some changes once Y&R returns with new episodes.  Expect some couples to break up.  Which of these couples do you most hope won't stay together?  Fans, respond to the poll below and let me know.



When Y&R returns, what couple would you most want to see break up?

Adam and Chelsea
Nick and Phyllis
Sharon and Rey
Victor and Nikki
Abby and Chance
Other
Please Specify:
Created with PollMaker


NOTE TO READERS

If you have any comments on Y&R, please email them to me with "Viewer Forum" in the subject line. I will be happy to publish your comments and reply to them  You do not have to use your real name. 

My email address:  jmadden16@yahoo.ca


That's all for now.  Don't forget that the next edition of Y&R Report will appear in this space on Saturday, July 18, 2020.  Take care and stay safe.  Happy 4th of July to my readers in the United States.


- Joanne

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Lucie Arnaz: Then and Now


Lucie Arnaz has a remarkable show business pedigree. She's the daughter of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, one of the most celebrated duos in the history of television sitcoms.  Lucie is a also a star in her own right.  Like her parents, she is a versatile entertainer.  She' an accomplished actress of stage, screen and television. and she's a singer too.

Lucie was born of July 17, 1951 in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California.  She came into the world just as her parents were preparing to launch a new television show called I Love Lucy, which first aired on October 15. 1951.  I Love Lucy made television history and it became the Number 1 show in America for four consecutive years.  Audiences couldn't get enough of the antics of the zany redheaded Lucy and her Cuban-born band leader husband, Ricky Ricardo, along with their friends Fred (William Frawley) and Ethel (Vivan Vance) Mertz.

Lucille Ball (born August 6, 1911), was just shy of her 40th birthday when she gave birth to Lucie Désirée Arnaz, her only daughter.  According to the International Movie Database (IMDb), Lucy wanted to name her new baby after her cousin Suzan Ball.  However, Desi wanted to name the child after her mother, as a tribute to his wife.  While Lucy was asleep, Desi wrote the name "Lucie" on her birth certificate.  He decided to spell her name differently to distinguish her from her mother.  Lucie's middle name, Désirée, mostly likely comes from Lucille Ball's middle name, Désirée, or from Lucie's maternal grandmother (Lucy' mother), Désirée Evelyn Hunt.

A year and a half after Lucie's birth, Lucy gave birth to a second child, Desi Arnaz Jr., on January 19, 1953.  Lucy's real-life pregnancy was written into the script of  I Love Lucy., and Lucille Ball became one of the first women ever to appear pregnant on prime time.  Her TV character, Lucy Ricardo, also  gave birth to a son, Ricky Ricardo Jr., ("Little Ricky") on the very same day Lucy gave birth to Desi Jr.  Desi Jr. however, never portrayed "Little Ricky."

Lucy and Desi with Lucie and Desi Jr.

I Love Lucy went off the air in 1957.  From 1957 until 1960, a collection of 13 one-hour specials, known as the Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour, were occasionally shown on CBS.  However, things were not happy on the Arnaz homefront.  On May 4, 1960, just two months after filming of the last episode of the Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour, Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz divorced after twenty years of marriage.  Lucy, it seemed, could no longer tolerate Desi's alleged drinking and womanizing.  She said in court that it "got so bad that I thought it would be better for us not to be together."

Their daughter, Lucie, has had a great deal to say about her parents' divorce.  "They were fighting all the time,when we were growing up.  There was a lot of yelling and screaming," she told Closer Weekly in 2018..  "Their divorce was horrible.  And then there was the alcoholism.  I had preferred those things had never been there.  We didn't have any abuse, but we did go through some pretty hard stuff and that's why my parents didn't stay together."

Yet, according to Lucie, her mother and father were able to maintain an amicable relationship post-divorce.  In 2020, she told Closer Weekly that her parents had "a very successful divorce."  "They never said bad words about each other." she stated,. "and they stayed friends until the day they died."

Two years after her divorce from Desi Arnaz, Lucille Ball returned to weekly television with a new series, The Lucy Show, featuring her I Love Lucy co-star, Vivian Vance.  The Lucy Show ran from 1962 to 1968 and Lucie Arnaz appeared in various roles in eight separate episodes during those years.  Some of her roles were very minor.  In a 1962 episode, she had an uncredited bit part as a spectator.  However, in later episodes, her roles became more substantial.

The Lucy Show was still popular in 1968, but Lucy wanted to work with her children.  By that time, Vivian Vance was only making sporadic appearances on the show and she was ill with breast cancer.  As a result, the series was modified and its title was changed to Here's Lucy..  Here's Lucy ran for six seasons on CBS, from 1968 to 1974.  Luciie Arnaz and her brother Desi Jr, were cast as Kim and Craig Carter, the teenage children of Lucille Ball's character, Lucy Carter.

Below is a 1968 publicity photo for Here's Lucy with Lucie, her brother, Desi Jr. and their mother, Lucille Ball.  Lucie remained with the show until it went off the air in 1974.  Desi Jr., however, left in 1971, to pursue a film career.  He succeeded in landing a couple of good roles, such as the title role in Billy Two Hats, a 1974  Western, co-starring screen legend Gregory Peck, and the role of Marco Polo in Marco (1975).


After Here's Lucy ended its run, Lucie Arnaz made guest appearances on Marcus Welby, M.D.(1975), and Fantasy Island (1978).  She played the lead role in Who is the Black Dahlia?, a 1975 television movie about the gruesome 1947 Los Angeles murder of 22-year-old aspiring actress Elizabeth Short, known as "The Black Dahlia" because of her black outfits.  Lucie's other TV movie appearances during this time included Death Scream (1975), Billy Jack Goes to Washington (1977), The Mating Season (1980), Washington Mistress (1982) and One More Try (1982).

In 1985, Lucie was  given  her own comedy series, The Lucie Aranz Show.  She played Dr. Jane Lucas, a psychologist who responds to questions from listeners to  her popular radio call-in  program, The Love and Lucas Show (shades of Frazier).  The series only lasted from April 2 to June 11, 1985.

After the cancellation of The Lucie Arnaz Show, Lucie guest-starred in an episode of Murder, She Wrote (1988),  She also played a leading role in a TV movie called Who Gets the Friends, about a couple being divorced and how the divorce affects their mutual friendships.

In 1991, Lucie starred in another short-lived series called Sons and Daughters.  She portrayed Tess Hammersmith in this comedy-drama featuring an extended family in Portland, Maine.  In her 2011 Archive of American Television interview, Lucie described the show as "beautifully written."  Unfortunately, it was launched at the same time as the Gulf War began.  She remembered that they "kept postponing the show and delaying it, putting in on a different night."  The audience, she stated, never knew when or what time it was going to be on.  Although Sons and Daughters received critical acclaim, CBS camcelled the series, claiming that it couldn't find an audience.  According to Lucie," it was the other way around."

After the cancellation of Sons and Daughters, Lucie Arnaz appeared in more TV movies such as Abduction of Innocence (1996) and Bonne Nuit (1999).  She also guest-starred in a 2003 episode of Law & Order.  Her most recent TV appearance is in a 2020 episode of Will and Grace that pays homage to I Love Lucy.  The episode, which recreates famous scenes from I Love Lucy,  is entitled "We Love Lucy" (Season 11, Episode 16, Air Date: April 9, 2020).  Lucie Arnaz portrayed the no-nonsense factory boss in the classic I Love Lucy  chocolate factory scene, a role that was originally played by character actress Elvia Allman.

When asked about her Will and Grace appearance, Lucie stated the following:

"I know my parents would me over the moon to be honoured this way and by such similar talents who bring the same kind of joy to audiences as they did in I Love Lucy.  I'm thrilled to be invited to the party, and I will do my best to honour the memory of Elvia Allman iconic performance."


Lucie Arnaz has wed twice.  She married actor Philip Vandervort Menegaux on July 17, 1971, her 20th birthday.  Philip, who is professionally known as Philip Vandervort, met Lucie when they both appeared in a 1967 episode of The Lucy Show entitled "Lucy Gets Her Diploma."  He and Lucy also appeared in a 1968 episode of the show entitled "Lucy Gets Involved.".  Their marriage lasted until 1976.

Below is a photo of Lucie and Philip on their wedding day.


On June 22, 1980, Lucie married actor. playwright and director Laurence "Larry" Luckinbill.  The couple met in 1979, while they were they were both appearing on Broadway, Lucie in They're Playing Our Song and Laurence in Neil Simon's Chapter Two.  They have three children together: Simon (born in 1980), Joseph (born in 1982) and Katharine "Kate" (born in 1985).  Lucie is also stepmother to Laurence's two sons from his previous marriage to actress Robin Strasser: Nicholas (born 1969) and Benjamin (born 1975).  Luckinbill.  Strasser is best known for her role as Dorian Lord in the now-defunct ABC daytime drama One Life to Live.

Lucie Arnaz and Laurence Luckinbill


END NOTES

*Both Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz remarried.  Lucy married comedian Gary Morton in 1962.  Desi Arnaz wed Edith Mack Hirsch. in 1963.  Desi died of lung cancer at the age of 69 on December 2, 1986.  Lucille Ball died on April 26, 1989 due to an aortic rupture. Gary Moron passed away on March 30, 1999 of lung cancer at the age of 74.  Edith died of cancer in 1985 at 67.

* In her Archive of American TV interview, Lucie stated that when her mother wanted to remarry, it was like a knife in the heart, 'cause you're kidding, right?  It's only been a year, not even."  Still, she described Gary Morton as "a nice guy . .a funny guy, comedian."  She said he was "a good stepfather."

* Lucie Arnaz starred opposite Neil Diamond and Sir Laurence Olivier in the 1980 musical drama film The Jazz Singer.  She played the role of Molly Bell, for which she received a Golden Globe nomination.

* Lucie Arnaz co-starred In the 2011 feature film, Smoking Nonsmoking (also known as The Pack), along with Elisabeth Moos.  Lucie portrayed a wife and mother whose husband dies from cancer.  Her son testifies against her for killing his father with secondhand smoke.

* During the 1960s, Desi Arnaz Jr. was a drummer and vocalist for the band Dino, Desi & Billy.  In addition to Desi Jr., the band consisted of Dino Martin (Dean Paul Marrtin), the son of singer/comedian Dean Martin, and the third member of the group was guitarist/vocalist Billy Hinsche.

* Lucie Arnaz and Laurence Luckinbill formed ArtLuck together, which produced Lucy and Desi: A Home Movie for NBC in 199, an Emmy-winning documentary about Lucie's parents.

* In the year 2000, Lucie wemt to London, England, where she  spent a year and a half performing in the West End production of Witches of Eastwick.

  
SOURCES: Biography (biography.com), "Inside Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz's 'Fantastic Romance' and 'Successful Divorce,'" by Coun Bertram, November 22, 2019;  Me TV (metv.com), 12 Surprising facts about 'Here's Lucy,' the forgotten Lucille Ball Hit," by MeTV Staff, March 27, 2017;  Closer Weekly, "Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz's Daughter Lucie Opens up About Her Parents' 'Horrible' Divorce," by Samantha Faragalli, August 1, 2018; Closer Weekly, "She Loves Lucy (and Desi, Too), Lucie Arnaz on Her Parents' Love Story and Protecting Their Legacy," by Ed Gross, February 19, 2020; Television Academy's Archive of American Television interview, December 9, 2011; TV Series Finale (tvseriesfinale.com), "Will & Grace: NBC Sitcom Recreating I Love Lucy with Guest Lucie Arnaz."  by Regina Avalos, November 26, 2019; Wikipedia; Internet Movie Database (IMDb)


- Joanne