Barry Williams (actor)

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Barry Williams
10.1.10BarryWilliamsByLuigiNovi1.jpg
Williams at the Big Apple Convention in Manhattan, October 1, 2010.
Born
Barry William Blenkhorn

(1954-09-30) September 30, 1954 (age 64)
OccupationActor
Singer
Years active1967–present
Spouse(s)
Diane Martin
(m. 1990; div. 1992)
[1]
Eila Mary Matt
(m. 1999; div. 2005)

Tina Mahina (m. 2017)[2][3][1]
Children2

Barry William Blenkhorn (born September 30, 1954),[4] known professionally as Barry Williams, is an American actor and singer best known for his role as the eldest of the Brady sons, Greg Brady, on the ABC television series The Brady Bunch.

Early life and career[edit]

Williams, youngest of three boys, was born in 1954 in Santa Monica, California,[4] to Doris May Moore and Canadian-born Frank Millar Blenkhorn of English, Scottish, and German ancestry.[5] Barry and siblings Craig and Scott Blenkhorn[4] grew up in Pacific Palisades, California, where actor Peter Graves was a neighbor.[6] Williams decided as a child that he wanted to be an actor, and in 1967 he made his television debut in an episode of Dragnet 1967.

Williams' most famous role was as oldest son Greg Brady on the 1970s sitcom The Brady Bunch.

Williams continued to be cast in guest roles on other TV series including Adam-12, The Invaders, That Girl, Mission: Impossible, The Mod Squad, Here Come the Brides and Bartleby, the Scrivener[7] before being cast in 1969 as Greg Brady on The Brady Bunch.

Later career[edit]

Following the cancellation of The Brady Bunch in 1974, Williams continued to appear in guest roles on television, and became involved in musical theater, touring with productions such as Grease, The Sound of Music, and West Side Story.

In 1988, Williams appeared on Broadway in the musical Romance/Romance with Tony Award-nominee Alison Fraser. Williams took over the lead male role of "Alfred/Sam" when Scott Bakula left the production. Years later, Williams was able to capitalize on being typecast as Greg Brady. Amid a procession of appearances in TV and movies that played up his famous teen role, he ended up landing a role that was a departure from the Brady image. He was tapped to play English con man Hannibal in 1984, who conspired with Holly Sutton Scorpio (Emma Samms) on the top-rated General Hospital.

Williams has appeared in various Brady Bunch TV movie reunions, including the 1988 Christmas movie, A Very Brady Christmas.

In 1989, Williams was honored by the Young Artist Foundation with its Former Child Star "Lifetime Achievement" Award for his role as Greg Brady.[8]

His 1992 autobiography, Growing Up Brady: I Was A Teenage Greg, co-written with Chris Kreski, was a New York Times bestseller and was adapted into a 2000 TV movie titled Growing Up Brady starring Adam Brody as Williams.

In 2000, Williams sang a parody of the Eminem hit single, "The Real Slim Shady", called "The Real Greg Brady" co-written by comedy writer and radio producer, David Brody, and Jay Gilbert of Froggy Radio in Cincinnati, Ohio and he sang the same song at Kings Island in Cincinnati in 2008. In 2001–2002, he played Manager Dean "The Machine" Strickland in 13 episodes of the sitcom, Hollywood 7, which featured the British pop group S Club 7.

Williams signing autographs in 2003 at "Barry Williams Disco Night"

In 2002, Williams participated on the FOX television show Celebrity Boxing, in a boxing match between him and former Partridge Family star, Danny Bonaduce. He lost to Bonaduce who holds a black belt in Tang Soo Do.

Williams played himself in the 2003 film Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star.

Williams has made multiple appearances at the World's Largest Disco in Buffalo, New York, where he discos his heart out.[citation needed]

In December 2007, he launched a fan portal named "The Greg Brady Project". The site features ongoing conversations with Barry, fans and other celebrities.

In 2008, Williams appeared in Episode 6 of the VH1 series, Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew. Williams participated as a friend of one of the patients, Chyna, and explained to her during a group session how her drinking had a negative impact on his own life and career.[9]

In January 2010, he took a role in The Asylum mockbuster, Mega Piranha,[10] who played alongside the former teen pop singer Tiffany.[11]

Williams has also created a cabaret act that pays tribute to his past and hosts the satellite radio trivia show, The Real Greg Brady's Totally '70s Pop Quiz starring Barry Williams, broadcast Saturdays on Sirius Satellite Radio's "70s on 7" channel.[12]

In late 2011, Williams started appearing in a show at the Yakov Smirnoff theater in Branson, Missouri, where he resides. He then moved to the Americana Theatre in Branson, where he performs his 70s Music Celebration! musical variety show, which showcases his singing and guitar playing ability along with clips, videos, and stories from his time on The Brady Bunch.

Williams performing in Branson, Missouri in October 2014

On September 4, 2016, Williams performed the national anthem at the NASCAR Sprint Cup 2016 Bojangles' Southern 500. The TV announcer said Williams was in "full Johnny Bravo mode!"

With the death of Florence Henderson on November 24, 2016, Williams became the oldest surviving cast member from The Brady Bunch.

In 2017, Williams was a promotional spokesperson for the MeTV television network where he promoted The Brady Bunch and other classic television series.

Actors' Equity Association dispute[edit]

In January 2001, Williams was fined $52,000 by Actors' Equity Association, the union representing stage actors, for starring as Captain Von Trapp in a non-union tour of The Sound of Music. According to Variety, the production was picketed in several cities. Williams responded by filing a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board, arguing that the fine was illegal because he had resigned from the union in September 2000 before the tour began. Equity alleged that Williams, who joined the union in 1974, was still a member when he began contract negotiations for the role.[13]

Williams was reinstated by Actor's Equity as a member in good standing in 2005 after he unionized a non-Equity production of A Christmas Carol in late 2004.[citation needed]

Filmography[edit]

Film[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1968 Wild in the Streets Young Man
1974 Goodnight Jackie Barry
1995 The Brady Bunch Movie Music Producer
2018 Flea Marsh Man

Television[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1967 Run for Your Life Stanley "The Company of Scoundrels"
1967 Dragnet 1967 John Heffernan "The Christmas Story"
1968 The Invaders Boy "The Pursued"
1968 The F.B.I. Boy "The Messenger"
1968 Lancer Ben Price "Blood Rock"
1968 That Girl Autograph Seeker "7 1/4: Part 2"
1968 Gomer Pyle, USMC Boy #1 "A Star Is Not Born"
1968 The Mod Newspaper Boy "The Guru"
1969 Here Come the Brides Peter "A Kiss Just for So"
1969 It Takes a Thief Herbie DuBois "A Matter of Grey Matter: Parts 1 & 2"
1969 Adam-12 Johnny Grant "Log 152: A Dead Cop Can't Help Anyone"
1969 Marcus Welby, M.D. Pancho McGurney "The Chemistry of Hope"
1969–1974 The Brady Bunch Greg Brady 117 episodes
1970 Hastings Corner Junior Fandango TV film
1970 Mission: Impossible King Victor "Gitano"
1972 The ABC Saturday Superstar Movie Greg Brady (voice) "The Brady Kids on Mysterious Island"
1972 The Brady Kids Greg Brady (voice) 17 episodes
1976 Police Woman Steve Glass "Generation of Evil"
1976–77 The Brady Bunch Hour Greg Brady 9 episodes
1979 Greatest Heroes of the Bible Jacob "Jacob's Challenge"
1981 The Brady Girls Get Married Greg Brady TV film
1982 Three's Company David Winthrop "Up in the Air"
1984 General Hospital Hannibal TV series
1985 Highway to Heaven Miki Winner "A Song for Jason: Parts 1 & 2"
1986 Rocky Road Wayne Kincaid "The Wrong Mr. Right"
1987 Murder, She Wrote Nate Findley "Night of the Headless Horseman"
1988 A Very Brady Christmas Greg Brady TV film
1990 The Bradys Dr. Greg Brady 6 episodes
1991 Kids Incorporated Ana's Dad "Breaking Up Is Hard to Do"
1994 Summertime Switch Frederick Egan II TV film
1994 Full House Barry Williams "Making Out Is Hard to Do"
1997 Perversions of Science Neighbor "People's Choice"
2001 Hollywood 7 Dean Strickland Main role
2006 According to Jim Ben "Sex Ed Fred"
2006 That '70s Show Jeff "We Will Rock You"
2009 Scrubs Barry Williams "My Soul on Fire: Part 1"
2010 Mega Piranha Bob Grady TV film
2011 A.N.T. Farm Game Show Host "America Needs TalANT"
2012 Bigfoot Simon Quint TV film
2017 The Loud House Bumper Sr. (voice) "Future Tense/Lynner Takes All"

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Silverman, Stephen M. (January 28, 2005). "In Brief". People. Retrieved April 4, 2012.
  2. ^ Dam, Julie K.L.; Miller, Samantha (December 13, 1999). "The Family Still Matters". People. 52 (23). Retrieved January 23, 2015.
  3. ^ "Experience Matt". Seawinds Asset Management. Archived from the original on June 3, 2013. Retrieved January 23, 2015. Note: Some sources erroneously give first name as "Ella"
  4. ^ a b c "Barry Williams". TVGuide.com. Retrieved January 23, 2015.
  5. ^ Family Tree
  6. ^ Williams, Barry. "Greg's Story". The Greg Brady Project. Archived from the original on August 15, 2013. Retrieved January 23, 2015.
  7. ^ "Britannica Classic: Herman Melville's Bartleby the Scrivener". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 1 March 2015.
  8. ^ "10th Annual Youth in Film Awards". YoungArtistAwards.org. Archived from the original on 2015-04-14. Retrieved 2011-03-31.
  9. ^ Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew, Season 1, Episode 6, VH1.com, accessed February 28, 2011.
  10. ^ "First Pics From Megapiranha Stink Like Fish". Dread Central. Retrieved 1 March 2015.
  11. ^ "Megapiranha Artwork Everything You Could Have Hoped For". Dread Central. Retrieved 1 March 2015.
  12. ^ Sirius "Totally '70s" home page
  13. ^ Jones, Chris. "Williams battles fine by Equity", Variety, June 25, 2001

External links[edit]