Dick Van Patten

Actor


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

Tab

About
About this interview

In his two-hour Archive interview, Dick Van Patten (1928-2015) discusses the beginning of his acting career, performing in twenty-seven Broadway shows from the time he was just seven years old. He details what it was like working as a child actor on his first TV show, Mama , and how this prepared him for the leading role he would later have on the hit family show, Eight Is Enough. He details his time working on Eight Is Enough and shares fond memories of the cast and crew. He also outlines shows on which he appeared throughout his long career, including The Dick Van Dyke Show, The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, Arrested Development and Hot in Cleveland. Stephen J. Abramson conducted the interview on May 11, 2011 in North Hollywood, CA.

"I like to do TV series. I think they're so comfortable. You're doing the same part every week. You're working with the same people and there's a lot of recognition. I like to do series best. I really do."

Highlights
Dick Van Patten on the camaraderie between the cast members and advice he gave to the younger members of the cast of Eight Is Enough
01:26
Dick Van Patten on issues Eight is Enough dealt with throughout the series
00:23
Dick Van Patten on the legacy of Eight Is Enough
00:27
Dick Van Patten on working with Paul Newman, Jack Lemon and James Dean on the show Mama
01:38
Dick Van Patten on his guest appearance on Hot in Cleveland with Carl Reiner and Don Rickles
01:24
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On his childhood and early influences: being a child model and performing in 27 Broadway shows from the time he was 7 years old; on working in radio at age 11
18:30
On appearing on the TV show Mama a.k.a. I Remember Mama; on a typical work week on the show and what it was like working with the cast and crew
24:31
On doing commercials for the sponsors of the show Mama; on the 1950 Christmas episode of the show; on appearing on Broadway and the show Mama, concurrently
09:50
On his memories of the Hollywood Blacklist; on playing a villain on Young Dr. Malone; on working on The Love Boat; on appearing in the special Men in White; on working on A Memory of Two Mondays
05:13

Chapter 2

On working on the special Men in White; on working on The Dick Van Dyke Show; on guest roles he had on several shows; on his work on several Mel Brooks projects
18:57
On how he got involved with the TV show Eight is Enough; on the premise of the show; on the characters and family dynamic within the show; on issues dealt with during the series' run; on the cast of Eight Is Enough
21:12
On episodes and the reunion movies for Eight Is Enough; on the Eight Is Enough Wedding
04:33
On the legacy of Eight is Enough; on his other TV appearances; on his approach to acting; on advice to aspiring actors; on his proudest career achievement; on how he would like to be remembered
12:21
Shows

Arnie

View Show Page
Dick Van Patten on working on the show Arnie
01:36

Arrested Development

View Show Page
Dick Van Patten on his guest appearance on Arrested Development
00:43

Dick Van Dyke Show, The

View Show Page
Dick Van Patten on working on The Dick Van Dyke Show
01:00

Don Rickles Show, The

View Show Page
Dick Van Patten on a guest role he had on The Don Rickles Show
00:26

Eight Is Enough

View Show Page
Dick Van Patten on how appearing on Mama prepared him for his role on Eight is Enough
01:13
Dick Van Patten on how he got involved with the TV show Eight is Enough and working on the show with the cast and crew
08:39

Goldbergs, The

View Show Page
Dick Van Patten on the differences between the shows The Goldbergs and Mama
01:58

Happy Days

View Show Page
Dick Van Patten on a guest role he had on Happy Days
01:16

Hot in Cleveland

View Show Page
Dick Van Patten on his guest appearance on Hot in Cleveland
01:24

I Dream of Jeannie

View Show Page
Dick Van Patten on a guest role he had on I Dream of Jeannie with Barbara Eden and Larry Hagman
00:28

Kolchak: The Night Stalker

View Show Page
Dick Van Patten on a guest role he had on Kolchak: The Night Stalker
00:21

Love Boat, The

View Show Page
Dick Van Patten on appearing as a villain on The Love Boat
00:26
Dick Van Patten on a guest role he had on The Love Boat
00:28

Mama

View Show Page
Dick Van Patten on appearing on the show Mama
04:04
Dick Van Patten on the premise of the TV show Mama; his character "Nels" and what it was like working on the show with the cast and crew
09:04

Maude

View Show Page
Dick Van Patten on a guest role he had on Maude
00:50

Medical Center

View Show Page
Dick Van Patten on a guest role he had on Medical Center
00:39

Six Million Dollar Man, The

View Show Page
Dick Van Patten on a guest role he had on The Six Million Dollar Man
00:31

That Girl

View Show Page
Dick Van Patten on a guest role he had on That Girl with Marlo Thomas
00:37

Wonder Woman

View Show Page
Dick Van Patten on a guest role he had on Wonder Woman
00:46
Topics

Diversity in Television

View Topic
Dick Van Patten on issues Eight is Enough dealt with throughout the series
00:23

Hollywood Blacklist

View Topic
Dick Van Patten on his memories of the Hollywood Blacklist
00:50

Industry Crossroads

View Topic
Dick Van Patten on his memories of the Hollywood Blacklist
00:50

Minorities

View Topic
Dick Van Patten on issues Eight is Enough dealt with throughout the series
00:23

Sports

View Topic
Dick Van Patten on the Eight Is Enough reunion movies beating the World Series in TV ratings
01:02

Technological Innovation

View Topic
Dick Van Patten on seeing a prototype of TV at the World's Fair for the first time
00:50

Television Industry

View Topic
Dick Van Patten on his memories of the Hollywood Blacklist
00:50

World Series

View Topic
Dick Van Patten on the Eight Is Enough reunion movies beating the World Series in TV ratings
01:02
Professions

Actor

View Profession
Dick Van Patten on how appearing on Mama prepared him for his role on Eight is Enough
01:13
Genres

Comedy Series

View Genre
Dick Van Patten on how appearing on Mama prepared him for his role on Eight is Enough
01:13
Dick Van Patten on the differences between the shows The Goldbergs and Mama
01:58
Dick Van Patten on appearing as a villain on The Love Boat
00:26
Dick Van Patten on working on The Dick Van Dyke Show
01:00
Dick Van Patten on working on the show Arnie
01:36

Drama Series

View Genre
Dick Van Patten on the premise of the TV show Mama; his character "Nels" and what it was like working on the show with the cast and crew
09:04
Dick Van Patten on how he got involved with the TV show Eight is Enough and working on the show with the cast and crew
08:39
People

Willie Aames

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on working with Willie Aames on Eight is Enough
00:23

Tallulah Bankhead

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on acting in a play with Tallulah Bankhead and Fredrick March
00:19

Gertrude Berg

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on the differences between the show The Goldbergs and Mama
01:58

William Blinn

View Interview Page
Dick Van Patten on producer, William Blinn's involvement with the show Eight is Enough
00:31

Mel Brooks

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on his work on several Mel Brooks projects
02:20

Betty Buckley

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on Betty Buckley's character on Eight Is Enough
00:25

Johnny Carson

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on appearing on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson
01:59

Lee J. Cobb

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on a bet he made with Lee J. Cobb while working on Men in White
02:59

James Dean

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on James Dean being hired as his replacement to work on the show Mama
00:50
Dick Van Patten on working with Paul Newman, Jack Lemon and James Dean on the show Mama
01:52

Dick Van Dyke

View Interview Page
Dick Van Patten on working on The Dick Van Dyke Show with Dick Van Dyke
01:00

Barbara Eden

View Interview Page
Dick Van Patten on a guest role he had on I Dream of Jeannie with Barbara Eden and Larry Hagman
00:27

Lynn Fontanne

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on working with Lynn Fontanne and Sylvia Sidney and mishaps while working in live TV
00:58

Mary Frann

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on having Mary Frann play his wife on Eight Is Enough - the second reunion movie
00:30

Larry Hagman

View Interview Page
Dick Van Patten on a guest role he had on I Dream of Jeannie with Barbara Eden and Larry Hagman
00:27

Mark Hamill

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on Mark Hamill's involvement with the pilot for Eight is Enough
01:38

Charlton Heston

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on his role in the film Soylent Green and working with Edward G. Robinson and Charlton Heston
02:05

Ron Howard

View Interview Page
Dick Van Patten on working with Henry Winkler and Ron Howard on Happy Days
01:16

Diana Hyland

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on working on the soap opera Young Dr. Malone with Diana Hyland
01:15
Dick Van Patten on Diana Hyland's involvement with Eight Is Enough and how her death was handled on the show
02:14

Dianne Kay

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on working with Dianne Kay on Eight is Enough
00:11

Elia Kazan

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on acting in a play directed by Elia Kazan
01:54

Jack Lemmon

View Interview Page
Dick Van Patten on working with Paul Newman, Jack Lemon and James Dean on the show Mama
01:38

Rue McClanahan

View Interview Page
Dick Van Patten on appearing as a villain on The Love Boat with Rue McClanahan
00:26

Arthur Miller

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on working on A Memory of Two Mondays
00:36

Worthington Miner

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on working with Worthington "Tony" Miner
01:11

Ralph Nelson

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on working with the director, Ralph Nelson and handling challenges of live TV on the show Mama
01:47

Paul Newman

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on working with Paul Newman, Jack Lemon and James Dean on the show Mama
01:38

Lani O'Grady

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on working with Lani O'Grady on Eight is Enough
00:57

Doris Quinlan

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on working with Doris Quinlan
00:38

Carl Reiner

View Interview Page
Dick Van Patten on his guest appearance on Hot in Cleveland with Carl Reiner and Don Rickles
01:24

Adam Rich

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on working with Adam Rich on Eight is Enough
00:47

Don Rickles

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on a guest role he had on The Don Rickles Show with Don Rickles
00:26
Dick Van Patten on his guest appearance on Hot in Cleveland with Carl Reiner and Don Rickles
01:24

Edward G. Robinson

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on his role in the film Soylent Green and working with Edward G. Robinson and Charlton Heston
02:05

Sylvia Sidney

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on working with Lynn Fontanne and Sylvia Sidney and mishaps while working in live TV
00:58

Fred Silverman

View Interview Page
Dick Van Patten on how Fred Silverman chose him for his role on the TV show Eight is Enough
03:10

David Susskind

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on appearing on the special Men in White produced by David Susskind
01:08

Marlo Thomas

View Interview Page
Dick Van Patten on a guest role he had on That Girl with Marlo Thomas
00:37

Henry Winkler

View Interview Page
Dick Van Patten on working with Henry Winkler and Ron Howard on Happy Days
01:16

Peggy Wood

View Person Page
Dick Van Patten on the first TV show he worked on as a child: Mama a.k.a. I Remember Mama
00:27
Dick Van Patten on working with Peggy Wood, Judson Laire, Robin Morgan, Iris Mann
01:45
Dick Van Patten on the differences between the show The Goldbergs and Mama
53:11

All Interviews

Q
S