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Lucyilove

Bea Benaderet

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Shemp    21

... when they cast Bea on Hillbillies and then changed her completely for the role on Petticoat Junction, so when they did these shows where they intercrossed, it made it weird to have Pearl now playing the matriarch on Petticoat Junction.

 

 

In the first crossover episodes, the similarity of Pearl and Kate was addressed. Kate's side of the family was distant relation to the Clampett/Bodine clan. That family connection was the plot setup for Granny going to Hooterville, to be a nurse for Betty Jo & Steve's baby.

 

 

The Clampetts never "met" Kate Bradley. The first crossovers were filmed shortly after terminally ill Bea left the show; they aired in October 1968, a couple weeks before Bea died. In those episodes, only Granny made the trip to Hooterville. The later crossovers for the 1968 Thanksgiving and Christmas episodes involved the entire Clampett family making the trip, with Hathaway, Drysdale and the GREEN ACRES cast along for the ride. By that time, June Lockhart had joined the PETTICOAT JUNCTION cast.

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Shemp    21

... she was working nonstop with PETTICOAT JUNCTION and THE FLINTSTONES both running at the same time

 

Bea was on THE FLINTSONES only thru season 4 (1963 - 1964). In the show's final two seasons, Gerry Johnson was the voice of Betty Rubble. PETTICOAT JUNCTION premiered in the 1963 - 1964 season, but that year's FLINTSTONES voiceover tracks were done before she reported for her new fulltime job on PJ.

 

 

On the topic of voiceovers, don't forget that for many years Bea Benaderet was the female voice in Warner Brothers' Merrie Melodies & Looney Tunes cartoons. She began working on those toons circa 1940 up thru 1952. WB closed the cartoon unit in 1952, but had a change of heart after 6 months and reopened. During that hiatus, Bea had moved on to other projects (primarily THE GEORGE BURNS & GRACIE ALLEN SHOW, which went to a weekly/filmed format in its 3rd season of 1952 - 1953), and June Foray came in to take her place at WB. Some of Bea's voice tracks, recorded before she left in 1952, can be heard in toons released as late as 1955.

 

Although June Foray is often credited as the sole voice of some well-known characters, it was Bea Benaderet who originated the voices of Granny, Witch Hazel and Prissy Hen. Some other Benaderet voice highlights include Red Riding Hood in LITTLE RED RIDING RABBIT (1943) and Mama Bear in Chuck Jones' hilarious series of The Three Bears cartoons...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aVMo04jKY7s

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R0DVY49I6Ro

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Lucyilove    234

Bea was on THE FLINTSONES only thru season 4 (1963 - 1964). In the show's final two seasons, Gerry Johnson was the voice of Betty Rubble. PETTICOAT JUNCTION premiered in the 1963 - 1964 season, but that year's FLINTSTONES voiceover tracks were done before she reported for her new fulltime job on PJ.

 

I didn't mean to suggest Bea was the only Betty Rubble or that she did both series thoroughout their runs but her voiceovers that overlapping season were not recorded in advance though maybe a few were. Indeed, Bea was FIRED from The Flintstones because she showed up late for a taping one Friday when her work on PJ ran over schedule. Hanna-Barbera were quite angry at her for taking a regular role on another series on another network and fired her the first time she was late. This story was told on the now defunct Golden Age of Cartoons website in an interview I believe with Mel Blanc Jr. and also confirmed by Jean Vander Pyl (Wilma Flintstone) and Janet Waldo in other interviews and is to be discussed in the upcoming Bea Benaderet biography written by the guy who wrote the book on Verna Felton. I love Hanna-Barbera cartoons but I was disgusted by this story about how they treated Bea who was quite devastated by the incident. Indeed, the were so spiteful they took her name off the credits on the episodes she had done that hadn't yet aired so nobody is credited on them as Betty Rubble!

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C L A U D E    2,006

In the first crossover episodes, the similarity of Pearl and Kate was addressed. Kate's side of the family was distant relation to the Clampett/Bodine clan. That family connection was the plot setup for Granny going to Hooterville, to be a nurse for Betty Jo & Steve's baby.

 

 

The Clampetts never "met" Kate Bradley. The first crossovers were filmed shortly after terminally ill Bea left the show; they aired in October 1968, a couple weeks before Bea died. In those episodes, only Granny made the trip to Hooterville. The later crossovers for the 1968 Thanksgiving and Christmas episodes involved the entire Clampett family making the trip, with Hathaway, Drysdale and the GREEN ACRES cast along for the ride. By that time, June Lockhart had joined the PETTICOAT JUNCTION cast.

Had no idea, did not remember any of that, thanks for clarifying.

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Will    55

I didn't mean to suggest Bea was the only Betty Rubble or that she did both series thoroughout their runs but her voiceovers that overlapping season were not recorded in advance though maybe a few were. Indeed, Bea was FIRED from The Flintstones because she showed up late for a taping one Friday when her work on PJ ran over schedule. Hanna-Barbera were quite angry at her for taking a regular role on another series on another network and fired her the first time she was late. This story was told on the now defunct Golden Age of Cartoons website in an interview I believe with Mel Blanc Jr. and also confirmed by Jean Vander Pyl (Wilma Flintstone) and Janet Waldo in other interviews and is to be discussed in the upcoming Bea Benaderet biography written by the guy who wrote the book on Verna Felton. I love Hanna-Barbera cartoons but I was disgusted by this story about how they treated Bea who was quite devastated by the incident. Indeed, the were so spiteful they took her name off the credits on the episodes she had done that hadn't yet aired so nobody is credited on them as Betty Rubble!

When is this book coming out. Beside Lucy, I love Bea and grew up with Petticoat Junction. It was so much more enjoyable for me than Andy Griffith Show.

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Lucyilove    234

When is this book coming out. Beside Lucy, I love Bea and grew up with Petticoat Junction. It was so much more enjoyable for me than Andy Griffith Show.

I think he's still writing it, it's not finished. I've read about it on a couple of message boards on the net.

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Lucyilove    234

But, like the way guests stars played different characters on ILL and i never did like that, ruined the reality of it all, they did the same thing when they cast Bea on Hillbillies and then changed her completely for the role on Petticoat Junction, so when they did these shows where they intercrossed, it made it weird to have Pearl now playing the matriarch on Petticoat Junction.

Oh that's something that really irritates me too, when a show uses an actor they already had on it as a different character. They used to do it a lot particularly back in the 50s and 60s, I guess they didn't expect people to watch these episodes over and over through the years and remember the actors. Usually, the actor's later appearance on the show is a bigger, better part, ie Mary Jane Croft on ILL and particularly Verna Felton whose second appearance was what, two months or so later? Truthfully though I doubt the typical viewer would pick up on that, "Hey wasn't she on another episode in a different part?" the way a buff would though.

 

I don't have a problem though with an actor going on to a new series in a new role though like Bea did when she jumped from BH to PJ - very conceivable there could be another woman who looked like Pearl Bodine, particularly a distant cousin and Bea's look was considerably different in the roles. After all, of course none of us has a problem (I hope not!) with Lucy Carmichael and Lucy Carter being very similiar to a certain New York housewife.

 

Although I do hate it on Green Acres episodes were they refer to The Beverly Hillbillies as a tv show and then we later see Oliver and Lisa on an episode of BH celebrating Thanksgiving with the Clampetts and the PJ cast!!

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C L A U D E    2,006

Oh that's something that really irritates me too, when a show uses an actor they already had on it as a different character. They used to do it a lot particularly back in the 50s and 60s, I guess they didn't expect people to watch these episodes over and over through the years and remember the actors. Usually, the actor's later appearance on the show is a bigger, better part, ie Mary Jane Croft on ILL and particularly Verna Felton whose second appearance was what, two months or so later? Truthfully though I doubt the typical viewer would pick up on that, "Hey wasn't she on another episode in a different part?" the way a buff would though.

 

I don't have a problem though with an actor going on to a new series in a new role though like Bea did when she jumped from BH to PJ - very conceivable there could be another woman who looked like Pearl Bodine, particularly a distant cousin and Bea's look was considerably different in the roles. After all, of course none of us has a problem (I hope not!) with Lucy Carmichael and Lucy Carter being very similiar to a certain New York housewife.

 

Although I do hate it on Green Acres episodes were they refer to The Beverly Hillbillies as a tv show and then we later see Oliver and Lisa on an episode of BH celebrating Thanksgiving with the Clampetts and the PJ cast!!

Didn't know they did that on Green Acres, haven't seen it in years, refer to the Hillbillies i mean. Just was reading a book called the 101 best tv sitcoms of all time and it's fascinating, little tidbits we never knew on every show. I question some of them of course, LUCY PASSED ON THE ROLE OF CONNIE BROOKS IN OUR MISS BROOKS, how could she when she was already doing ILL? Apparently Shirley Booth passed on it too and seasoned veterans chastised her for playing a maid on HAZEL, yet she clearly admitted she did it for the money, to have security later on and she did have it for her twenty years after Hazel.

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C L A U D E    2,006

Back to Bea. It has always been said that the three bucolic comedies, Hillbillies, Junction and Green Acres were cancelled when CBS wanted to clean up their image and not be associated with such low brow product. However, the author reminds us that Petticoat Junction was cancelled a year earlier than the other two as the ratings had gone down after the loss of it's star, Bea. I had forgotten that June Lockhart, who was terrific in Lassie and had just finished that sci fi series when she joined as a totally different character and not the role played by Bea. Apparently, when Bea died AND the conductor of the Cannonball Express did also, it was the second biggest loss of actors for one show after three stars of Phyllis passed away. Veteran actress Judith Lowry, the great Burt Mustin and someone else.

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HarryCarter    1,022

Didn't know they did that on Green Acres, haven't seen it in years, refer to the Hillbillies i mean. Just was reading a book called the 101 best tv sitcoms of all time and it's fascinating, little tidbits we never knew on every show. I question some of them of course, LUCY PASSED ON THE ROLE OF CONNIE BROOKS IN OUR MISS BROOKS, how could she when she was already doing ILL? Apparently Shirley Booth passed on it too and seasoned veterans chastised her for playing a maid on HAZEL, yet she clearly admitted she did it for the money, to have security later on and she did have it for her twenty years after Hazel.

 

Lucy was offered the role of Connie Brooks on the Our Miss Brooks radio show in 1948 after Shirley Booth was deemed unsuitable. Booth recorded the a pilot for the radio series, but she played the role in too serious a manner and CBS decided to replace her.

 

 

 

Apparently, when Bea died AND the conductor of the Cannonball Express did also, it was the second biggest loss of actors for one show after three stars of Phyllis passed away. Veteran actress Judith Lowry, the great Burt Mustin and someone else.

 

Phyllis star Barbara Colby was murdered after three episodes of the series were filmed, before the series even aired. She was replaced by Liz Torres.

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C L A U D E    2,006

Lucy was offered the role of Connie Brooks on the Our Miss Brooks radio show in 1948 after Shirley Booth was deemed unsuitable. Booth recorded the a pilot for the radio series, but she played the role in too serious a manner and CBS decided to replace her.

 

 

 

 

 

Apparently, Miss Booth stated that she could not find any humor in a working teacher.

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Lucyilove    234

Didn't know they did that on Green Acres, haven't seen it in years, refer to the Hillbillies i mean. Just was reading a book called the 101 best tv sitcoms of all time and it's fascinating, little tidbits we never knew on every show. I question some of them of course, LUCY PASSED ON THE ROLE OF CONNIE BROOKS IN OUR MISS BROOKS, how could she when she was already doing ILL? Apparently Shirley Booth passed on it too and seasoned veterans chastised her for playing a maid on HAZEL, yet she clearly admitted she did it for the money, to have security later on and she did have it for her twenty years after Hazel.

 

Can't remember exactly the gag as I was never a top GREEN ACRES fan but in one episode either Mr. Haney was selling a glow-in-the-dark Beverly Hillbillies nightlight or Mr. Ziffle mentioned buying one from him. I think there was at least another BH gag like that on another episode.

 

Speaking of radio ideas for Lucy, I just discovered on an old radio show circa 1946 it was mentioned that MY SISTER EILEEN was going to be adapted into a radio series for Lucy!! That apparently fell through or maybe MY FAVORITE HUSBAND proved to be the better offer. Tying this to Shirley Booth, of course she starred in the original Broadway play of EILEEN as well as two radio adaptations of it in the 1940's, one of them with a prestardom Judy Holliday as Eileen!! :HALKING: I wonder what happened to Lucy's Eileen project or which sister she'd play (I would imagine the smarter one played by Shirley and then Rosalind Russell in the film since it's the bigger part).

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Lucyilove    234

Back to Bea. It has always been said that the three bucolic comedies, Hillbillies, Junction and Green Acres were cancelled when CBS wanted to clean up their image and not be associated with such low brow product. However, the author reminds us that Petticoat Junction was cancelled a year earlier than the other two as the ratings had gone down after the loss of it's star, Bea. I had forgotten that June Lockhart, who was terrific in Lassie and had just finished that sci fi series when she joined as a totally different character and not the role played by Bea. Apparently, when Bea died AND the conductor of the Cannonball Express did also, it was the second biggest loss of actors for one show after three stars of Phyllis passed away. Veteran actress Judith Lowry, the great Burt Mustin and someone else.

The conductor died pretty early on (Smiley Burnette?) and I don't think he even made it to when the show was in color and given it was a rather minor reoccuring part I don't think it had much of an effect on the show. I don't think I ever saw him until the dvd era because the B&W episodes were never rerun, probably because the daughters kept changing almost every season! Bea was invaluable to the show but given PJ was cancelled just one year before the Hillbillies it wouldn't have lasted much longer and perhaps not any longer than it did. Anyway, didn't it run seven years, that's a good long run. There aren't many sitcoms that ran eight or more seasons.

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HarryCarter    1,022

Can't remember exactly the gag as I was never a top GREEN ACRES fan but in one episode either Mr. Haney was selling a glow-in-the-dark Beverly Hillbillies nightlight or Mr. Ziffle mentioned buying one from him. I think there was at least another BH gag like that on another episode.

 

Speaking of radio ideas for Lucy, I just discovered on an old radio show circa 1946 it was mentioned that MY SISTER EILEEN was going to be adapted into a radio series for Lucy!! That apparently fell through or maybe MY FAVORITE HUSBAND proved to be the better offer. Tying this to Shirley Booth, of course she starred in the original Broadway play of EILEEN as well as two radio adaptations of it in the 1940's, one of them with a prestardom Judy Holliday as Eileen!! :HALKING: I wonder what happened to Lucy's Eileen project or which sister she'd play (I would imagine the smarter one played by Shirley and then Rosalind Russell in the film since it's the bigger part).

 

Lucy would have played Ruth (the Shirley Booth/Rosalind Russell part). CBS opted instead to do My Friend Irma and tried to get Lucy to star in that. Arthur Kurlan, who created the radio version of My Sister Eileen, sued CBS claiming that they took his basic property and created their own show in order to avoid paying him. The lawsuit went on for years and CBS eventually settled with him. There was a TV version of My Sister Eileen in 1960-61 starring Elaine Stritch.

 

It's interesting that Judy Holliday played Eileen in that radio version. Columbia wanted Judy to play Ruth in their 1955 musical version of My Sister Eileen. Judy turned it down, probably because Columbia was trying to rip off the Broadway hit Wonderful Town, which was based on the same property, written by her close friends Betty Comden and Adolph Green.

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C L A U D E    2,006

Can't remember exactly the gag as I was never a top GREEN ACRES fan but in one episode either Mr. Haney was selling a glow-in-the-dark Beverly Hillbillies nightlight or Mr. Ziffle mentioned buying one from him. I think there was at least another BH gag like that on another episode.

 

Speaking of radio ideas for Lucy, I just discovered on an old radio show circa 1946 it was mentioned that MY SISTER EILEEN was going to be adapted into a radio series for Lucy!! That apparently fell through or maybe MY FAVORITE HUSBAND proved to be the better offer. Tying this to Shirley Booth, of course she starred in the original Broadway play of EILEEN as well as two radio adaptations of it in the 1940's, one of them with a prestardom Judy Holliday as Eileen!! :HALKING: I wonder what happened to Lucy's Eileen project or which sister she'd play (I would imagine the smarter one played by Shirley and then Rosalind Russell in the film since it's the bigger part).

I was truly shocked when i found out Mrs Ziffell, mother to Arnold the pig was Lucy's old chum Barbara Pepper.

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C L A U D E    2,006

Lucy would have played Ruth (the Shirley Booth/Rosalind Russell part). CBS opted instead to do My Friend Irma and tried to get Lucy to star in that. Arthur Kurlan, who created the radio version of My Sister Eileen, sued CBS claiming that they took his basic property and created their own show in order to avoid paying him. The lawsuit went on for years and CBS eventually settled with him. There was a TV version of My Sister Eileen in 1960-61 starring Elaine Stritch.

 

It's interesting that Judy Holliday played Eileen in that radio version. Columbia wanted Judy to play Ruth in their 1955 musical version of My Sister Eileen. Judy turned it down, probably because Columbia was trying to rip off the Broadway hit Wonderful Town, which was based on the same property, written by her close friends Betty Comden and Adolph Green.

Good gravy marie, is there anything you DUN'T know?????

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LucyImHome    30

I can't believe Bea was fired from her gig on The Flintstones! Who would have had the gall to FIRE her? By the way, didn't her role as Pearl on TBH coincide with voicing Betty Rubble, more than PJ?

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Neil    1,325

Apparently, when Bea died AND the conductor of the Cannonball Express did also, it was the second biggest loss of actors for one show after three stars of Phyllis passed away. Veteran actress Judith Lowry, the great Burt Mustin and someone else.

 

The third was Barbara Colby , former daughter-in-law of Ethel Merman, who was killed before the series premiered, with episodes in the can. Colby was the perfect match for narcissistic Phyllis and the series never quite recovered from her departure. Liz Torres took over, but the chemistry wasn't there resulting in a different job setting for the 2nd and final year.

I actually saw Liz Torres's first appearance being filmed live, which was a flashback to Phyllis getting hired. No mention was made of Colby and I think this filming was before the premiere. I don't know how many Colby shows they aired, but Cloris did a special introduction.

Back to Bea!

Watching these Burns and Allen shows for the first time, I have a deeper appreciation for Bea. She shines more in the later episodes when her husband is played by Larry Keating. There's some tenderness between them...at times...

Fred Clark's version of Harry Morton is consistently unpleasant so the interplay between the two is limited to bickering. Also Harry eats a LOT, so there are jokes about his gluttony. the other 2 Harry Mortons: the way-too-young Hal March and the blacklisted John Brown (producer in "Moustache") were when the show was done live so are not part of the syndication package.

Although no one could EVER top the greatest 2nd bananas of all time: Vivian Vance and William Frawley, I think the series would still have worked if Bea and Gale had been cast.

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C L A U D E    2,006

The third was Barbara Colby , former daughter-in-law of Ethel Merman, who was killed before the series premiered, with episodes in the can. Colby was the perfect match for narcissistic Phyllis and the series never quite recovered from her departure. Liz Torres took over, but the chemistry wasn't there resulting in a different job setting for the 2nd and final year.

I actually saw Liz Torres's first appearance being filmed live, which was a flashback to Phyllis getting hired. No mention was made of Colby and I think this filming was before the premiere. I don't know how many Colby shows they aired, but Cloris did a special introduction.

Back to Bea!

Watching these Burns and Allen shows for the first time, I have a deeper appreciation for Bea. She shines more in the later episodes when her husband is played by Larry Keating. There's some tenderness between them...at times...

Fred Clark's version of Harry Morton is consistently unpleasant so the interplay between the two is limited to bickering. Also Harry eats a LOT, so there are jokes about his gluttony. the other 2 Harry Mortons: the way-too-young Hal March and the blacklisted John Brown (producer in "Moustache") were when the show was done live so are not part of the syndication package.

Although no one could EVER top the greatest 2nd bananas of all time: Vivian Vance and William Frawley, I think the series would still have worked if Bea and Gale had been cast.

I remember Barbara Colby, she was killed by someone? And yes Bea and Gale would have done fine as the Mertzs, almost any good second banana would have, the parts were so well written.

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C L A U D E    2,006

Bea, when she played the little old lady on I Love Lucy with Edward Everett Horton proved what a great actress she was, she was totally believable in that role, made up like an old lady but showing off excellent comedic skills that weren't so demanding on Petticoat Junction where she was the stable one.

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Mot Morenzi    1,466

I've been listening to a lot of MFH lately, and I've been really appreciating Bea's performances. Not only was she Iris Atterbury, she played many bit parts, and trotted out her "old lady" voice numerous times. But her Iris performances are just great. As wonderful as Vivian Vance was, it's unfortunate that circumstances didn't allow Bea to make more guest appearances. It's have been wonderful to see her do her Iris Atterbury routine on television, as she and Lucy worked so well together.

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Freddie2    827

Bea was incredible. It's a shame she died so young, as she could have made appearances in later Lucy shows. I think she voiced Liz's mom early on. I am kind of happy that they went with Eleanor Audley for that one.

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