Maureen McCormick

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For the American diplomat, see Maureen McCormack.
Maureen McCormick
Maureen McCormick Maui crop.PNG
McCormick in 2009
Born Maureen Denise McCormick
(1956-08-05) August 5, 1956 (age 59)
Encino, California, U.S.
Occupation Actress, recording artist, author
Years active 1964–present
Spouse(s) Michael Cummings (m. 1985–present)
Children Natalie Cummings

Maureen Denise McCormick (born August 5, 1956) is an American actress, recording artist and author. She is widely known for her portrayal of Marcia Brady on the ABC television sitcom The Brady Bunch, on which she starred from 1969 to 1974. She later reprised the role in many of the numerous Brady Bunch spin-offs and films, including The Brady Kids, The Brady Bunch Hour, The Brady Brides as well as A Very Brady Christmas (1988). McCormick also appeared in The Idolmaker (1980) as well as a wide range of other supporting film roles. In the 1980s and 1990s, she ventured into stage acting, appearing in a variety of different roles and productions such as Wendy Darling in Peter Pan and Betty Rizzo in Grease. McCormick also had a career as a recording artist, releasing four studio albums with the Brady Bunch cast as well as touring with them. Her only release as a solo artist to date is a country album, When You Get a Little Lonely (1995).

Despite professional success on The Brady Bunch and its spin-offs, McCormick struggled largely in her personal life for the years following the original series' end, struggling with addictions to cocaine and quaaludes as well as dealing with bouts of depression and bulimia, during which she lost her reputation for reliability as an actress. Since the 2000s, she has appeared on several reality television series such as VH1's Celebrity Fit Club, CMT's Gone Country (which led to a short-lived spin-off series led by McCormick, Outsiders Inn) and the Australian version of I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here!, as well as guest spots on a wide range of television series. In 2008, McCormick published an autobiography, Here's the Story: Surviving Marcia Brady and Finding My True Voice, which debuted at number four on The New York Times bestseller list and garnered significant publicity and mild controversy.

Early life and career[edit]

McCormick was born in Encino, California, to Irene (née Beckman) and William McCormick, a teacher.[1] She has three older brothers: Michael, Dennis, and Kevin. According to her biography, McCormick attended Taft High School in Woodland Hills, California.

At age six, she won the Baby Miss San Fernando Valley beauty pageant.[2] In 1964, she first appeared on national U.S. television, in Mattel commercials for Barbie and Chatty Cathy dolls. Through the later 1960s McCormick appeared in two episodes of Bewitched and played guest roles on I Dream of Jeannie, Honey West, The Farmer's Daughter, and My Three Sons. In 1970, she lent her voice to a redesigned Chatty Cathy doll.[citation needed]

Marcia Brady[edit]

Further information: The Brady Bunch
Further information: Characters of The Brady Bunch
McCormick's most famous role was as eldest daughter Marcia Brady on the classic 1970s sitcom The Brady Bunch.

McCormick played the eldest daughter, Marcia, who had five siblings. She had a perky and popular personality in The Brady Bunch, an American television sitcom about a blended family that aired from late 1969 to early 1974 on ABC, on Friday nights. After its cancellation, the series was later rebroadcast in syndication for decades, as children's programming, gathering a long-lasting, cross-generational popularity that led to spinoffs and movies. The Brady Brides aired briefly in 1981 as a miniseries that was spun off from the movie The Brady Girls Get Married (1981), placing McCormick in a shared lead role alongside Eve Plumb. However, when The Bradys aired in 1990 as a revival of the original series, McCormick had just given birth to a child and was unavailable to return as Marcia, so Leah Ayres filled the role instead.

In 2015, archive footage of McCormick as Marcia was used for an American TV commercial advertising Snickers chocolate bars. The commercial, which debuted during Super Bowl XLIX, features action film star Danny Trejo as young Marcia who (in the context of being hungry) isn't acting like herself. After eating a Snickers, Marcia appears as McCormick once again.[3][4]

Later career[edit]

Other film and television roles, stage debut and reality television appearances[edit]

After The Brady Bunch, McCormick made guest appearances on many television series such as Happy Days, Donny & Marie, Love Boat, Vega$, Streets of San Francisco, and Fantasy Island, along with supporting roles in The Idolmaker and B-movies such as 1979's A Vacation In Hell, Skatetown, U.S.A., and 1987's Return to Horror High. McCormick later claimed she failed to get a part as a prostitute or heroin dealer for the movie Midnight Express because she continued to be identified with her Brady Bunch role.[5] McCormick was the first actress to play Rebecca Crane on the soap opera Passions, but she was not put on contract. She also performed in several musical stage productions during the 1980s and 1990s, portraying such characters as Wendy Darling in Peter Pan and Betty Rizzo in Grease.[6] In 1997, she portrayed country singer Barbara Mandrell in the television biopic Get to the Heart: The Barbara Mandrell Story.

In 2007, McCormick joined the cast of the fifth season of VH1's reality show Celebrity Fit Club, hoping to lose 30 pounds she had gained since her mother died of cancer and needing to move her disabled brother into an assisted living facility. McCormick lost 34 pounds and, in June of that year, was the individual winner of the series. In 2008, she became a spokesperson for Children International.[7] Later that year, she joined the cast of the CMT reality show Gone Country, where she competed for a recording contract. This led to a spin-off reality series called Outsiders Inn, in which she opened a bed and breakfast in Newport, Tennessee. In March 2009, McCormick appeared on Comedy Central's roast of Larry the Cable Guy. She also reprised her role as Marcia Brady on an episode of the sitcom Scrubs as a character's dream wife.

In 2015, McCormick appeared in the Australian version of I'm a Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here!, where she lasted 42 days and was the last evictee before the finale.[8]

Recording career[edit]

McCormick recorded four albums with the Brady Bunch cast, and toured with them. In 1972, she released her first solo single with the songs "Truckin' Back to You" and "Teeny Weeny Bit (Too Long)". The following year, McCormick recorded an album with her Brady Bunch co-star Christopher Knight, a pop extended play titled Chris Knight and Maureen McCormick, which carried both duets and solo tracks. McCormick's second solo single "Little Bird", backed with "Just a Singin' Alone", had mild chart success in the western United States. McCormick later performed "Little Bird" on American Bandstand, where host Dick Clark encouraged her to follow a singing career. McCormick released another single in 1973, "Love's in the Roses", backed with "Harmonize".

Over twenty years later, McCormick released her first and only solo studio album to date, a country album titled When You Get a Little Lonely (1995). Although not a commercial success, it garnered mostly positive reviews.

Autobiography[edit]

McCormick released her autobiography, Here's the Story: Surviving Marcia Brady and Finding My True Voice, on October 14, 2008, with wide and sometimes controversial publicity. It debuted at number four on The New York Times bestseller list, where it stayed for three weeks.[9] The book was published by HarperCollins and was acquired by Director of Creative Development Lisa Sharkey. While promoting the book, McCormick was a guest on many news and talk shows such as Access Hollywood, The Howard Stern Show, Good Day L.A., and Paula's Party. The Today Show reportedly aired an interview with McCormick about the book rather than switch to a story about the 2008 recession.[10] McCormick said that a film would likely be made about her autobiography.[11]

Personal life[edit]

McCormick had a sporadic romance with her Brady Bunch co-star Barry Williams during the original series' run.

In her autobiography, McCormick wrote that her grandmother died from syphilis in a mental institution, infected by her husband, who caught it in Europe during World War I (and who committed suicide a week after his wife's death). McCormick's mother contracted syphilis in utero, and McCormick dealt with a lifelong but unfounded fear that she would also get the disease, and stated that her favorite scenes in The Brady Bunch were those that called for her to cry, since this allowed her to release feelings which she drew from those fears.[12]

Following the cancellation of The Brady Bunch, McCormick spent years addicted to cocaine and quaaludes, which harmed her career. McCormick later claimed that she sometimes traded sex for drugs, and also had two abortions during her early twenties. She flubbed an audition with Steven Spielberg for a part in Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981), arriving for the audition under the influence of cocaine and having not slept for three days. She lost her reputation for reliability as an actress in Hollywood, and one producer threatened that she would never work as an actress again. She also dealt with bouts of depression and bulimia.[2][13]

McCormick married Michael Cummings on March 16, 1985, who had heard of The Brady Bunch but had never seen it at the time. They fell in love upon meeting in a church.[14] McCormick and Cummings have one child, Natalie Michelle, born May 19, 1989. The family lives in Westlake Village, northwest of Los Angeles.

After getting married, McCormick went through a series of interventions, stints in rehab, and experimental therapies. She says that treatment with psychologist Eugene Landy set her back. She began to get sober after marrying, but she still suffered from depression and paranoia. She once threatened to jump from a balcony in front of her husband.[14] She and her husband were at first wary of medication, but McCormick has been treated with antidepressant medication such as Prozac since the 1990s. McCormick also said that she was helped by her friendships with former Brady Bunch cast members.[2][5]

In April 2007, McCormick appeared on Dr. Phil to discuss a family dispute, accusing her brother of both elder abuse and alienating their father from his other children to gain control of his finances.[15]

Biographical portrayals[edit]

Kaley Cuoco portrayed Maureen McCormick in Growing Up Brady (2000). McCormick's character Marcia Brady has been portrayed by Christine Taylor in The Brady Bunch Movie (1995) and its sequel A Very Brady Sequel.

Film and Television[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1965 Farmer's Daughter, TheThe Farmer's Daughter Christine TV series; season 2, episode 25: "Why Don't They Ever Pick Me?"
1965 Bewitched Young Endora — Girl TV series; season 2, episode 7: "Trick or Treat"
1965 Honey West Margaret Mary Driscoll TV series; season 1, episode 8: "In the Bag"
1965–
1966
Camp Runamuck Maureen Sullivan TV series; two episodes; season 1, episode 1: "Who Stole My Bathtub"; season 1, episode 16: "Tomboy"
1966 I Dream of Jeannie Susan TV series; season 1, episode 20: "My Master, the Doctor"
1967 My Three Sons Sylvia Walters TV series; season 8, episode 10: "Ernie the Bluebeard"
1969 Arrangement, TheThe Arrangement Uncredited Zephyr Commercial
1969–
1974
Brady Bunch, TheThe Brady Bunch Marcia Brady TV series; 116 episodes; series regular
1971 Cold Turkey Talking Doll Voice
1972 ABC Saturday Superstar Movie, TheThe ABC Saturday Superstar Movie Marcia Brady The Brady Kids on Mysterious Island; television movie; voice
1972–
1973
Brady Kids, TheThe Brady Kids Marcia Brady TV series; voice
1973 Marcus Welby, M.D. Sharon Boyd TV series; season 4, episode 23: "The Day After Forever"
1975 Happy Days Hildie TV series; season 2, episode 16: "Cruisin'"
1975 Harry O Nancy Wayne TV series; season 1, episode 22: "Street Games"
1975 Turning Point of Jim Malloy, TheThe Turning Point of Jim Malloy Uncredited Television movie
1975 Joe Forrester Irene Kellogg TV series; season 1, episode 3: "Bus Station"
1976 Streets of San Francisco, TheThe Streets of San Francisco Cindy Lawson TV series; season 5, episode 5: "No Minor Vices"
1976 Pony Express Rider Rose of Sharon Theatrical release
1976 Gibbsville Uncredited TV series; season 1, episode 4: "All the Young Girls"
1976–
1977
Brady Bunch Hour, TheThe Brady Bunch Hour Marcia Brady TV series; 9 episodes; series regular
1977 Delvecchio Lynette Youndfellow TV series; season 1, episode 14: "One Little Indian"
1977 Moonshine County Express Sissy Hammer Theatrical release
1977 Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries, TheThe Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries Karen Phillips TV series; season 2, episode 10: "Nancy Drew's Love Match"
1977–
1982
Love Boat, TheThe Love Boat Barbara Holmes TV series; 5 episodes
1978 Vega$ Jenny Logan TV series; season 1, episode 8: "The Pageant"
1978–
1983
Fantasy Island Angela Brennan TV series; 6 episodes
1979 Take Down Brooke Cooper Theatrical release
1979 Insight Jenny TV series; one episode: "When, Jenny? When?"
1979 Lou Grant Tiffany TV series; season 2, episode 16: "Sweep"
1979 Vacation in Hell, AA Vacation in Hell Margret Television movie
1979 Runaways, TheThe Runaways Janet TV series; season 2, episode 2: "Throwaway Child"
1979 Skatetown, U.S.A. Susan Theatrical release
1980 Idolmaker, TheThe Idolmaker Ellen Fields Theatrical release
1981 Brady Girls Get Married, TheThe Brady Girls Get Married Marcia Brady TV special
1981 Brady Brides, TheThe Brady Brides Marcia Brady-Logan TV series; 6 episodes; series regular
1981 Texas Lightning Fay Theatrical release
1983 Shout for Joy Uncredited Co-stars: Michael Cummings; Robert Pierce
1986 New Love, American Style Uncredited TV series; episode: "Love and the F.M. Doctor"
1987 Return to Horror High Officer Tyler Theatrical release
1988 Very Brady Christmas, AA Very Brady Christmas Marcia Brady Logan Television movie
1989 That's Adequate Space Princess Theatrical release
1989 Day by Day Marcia Brady TV series; season 2, episode 11: "A Very Brady Episode"
1993 Bradymania: A Very Brady Special Marcia Martin Brady-Logan TV special
1996 Single Guy, TheThe Single Guy Valerie TV series; season 2, episode 4: "Kept Man"
1996 Panic in the Skies! Turkey, Walker's Assistant Television movie
1997 Touched by an Angel Jodi TV series; season 3, episode 19: "Clipped Wings"
1997 Dogtown Didi Schmidt Theatrical release
1997 Get to the Heart: The Barbara Mandrell Story Barbara Mandrell Television movie
1997 ABC TGIF Judy Beauchamp TV series; episode: "Halloween Frightful Bash"
1997–
1998
Teen Angel Judy Beauchamp TV series; 11 episodes; series regular
1997–
2003
Johnny Bravo Franny
Amberly
Pizza Girl
TV series; voice; 3 episodes
1999 Baby Huey's Great Easter Adventure Nick's Mom Direct-to-video
1999 Moesha Saleslady TV series; season 5, episode 8: "Isn't She Lovely?"
2000 Million Dollar Kid, TheThe Million Dollar Kid Betsy Hunter Theatrical release
2000 Passions Rebecca Hotchkiss (#1) TV series; season regular
2000–
2002
Son of the Beach Mrs. Strawther TV series; 3 episodes
2001 A-List, TheThe A-List Uncredited Short film
2001 Title to Murder Leah Farrell Theatrical release
2001 Shock Video 2002: America Undercover Narrator Television special
2002 Ellen Show, TheThe Ellen Show Rita Carter TV series; season 1, episode 14: "Shallow Gal"
2002 Jane White Is Sick & Twisted Nancy Theatrical release
2003 Brothers Garcia, TheThe Brothers Garcia Mrs. Bauer TV series; season 4, episode 11: "Moving on Up"
2003 Scrubs, Scrubs Maureen McCormick TV series; season 3, episode 2: "My Journey"
2004 Guardian, TheThe Guardian Receptionist TV series; season 3, episode 12: "Beautiful Blue Mystic"
2008 Stone & Ed Dream Mother Theatrical release
2008 Outsider's Inn The Innkeeper TV series; series regular; 7 episodes
2011 Prayer Hour Stage Mom TV movie
2011 Christmas Spirit Sarah TV movie
2012 Snow White: A Deadly Summer Eve Direct-to-video
2014 Video Game High School Mrs. Barnstormer Web-series
2015 I'm a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here! – Australia Contestant TV reality show

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Presenter Award Result
2005–
2006
TV Land Awards Choice Dream Sequence Nominated
2005 TV Land Awards Choice Singing Siblings (shared with the kids of The Brady Bunch) Nominated
2006 TV Land Awards Most Beautiful Braces Nominated
2007 TV Land Award Pop Culture Award Won

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Maureen McCormick Biography (1956–)". Filmreference.com. Retrieved 2010-05-07. 
  2. ^ a b c "And the Truth Will Set You Free: Maureen McCormick Steve Duin for The Oregonian October 17, 2008". Blog.oregonlive.com. Retrieved 2010-05-07. 
  3. ^ AdWatch: Snickers Super Bowl Ad Brings Out Different Side of Marcia Brady, accessed June 10, 2015
  4. ^ The Snickers ‘Brady Bunch’-themed Super Bowl 2015 commercial starring Danny Trejo and Steve Buscemi, accessed June 10, 2015
  5. ^ a b "A Very Brady Confession Maureen McCormick for Newsweek Magazine November 10, 2008 issue". Newsweek.com. 2008-11-10. Retrieved 2010-05-07. 
  6. ^ "Brady World Peter Pan". Retrieved 22 October 2013. 
  7. ^ https://www.children.org/archive/2008/jul/actress-works-with-poor-children-in-africa-on-access-hollywood
  8. ^ Munro, Peter (1 February 2015). "'I'm a Celebrity ... Get Me Out Of Here' begins in South African jungle". smh.com.au. Retrieved 1 February 2015. 
  9. ^ "New Thriller "The Brass Verdict" By Michael Connelly Tops New York Times Best Seller List AHN October 27, 2008". Allheadlinenews.com. Retrieved 2010-05-07. 
  10. ^ Thursday, October 16, 2008 (2008-10-16). "The Thursday wrap Pittsburgh Tribune Review October 16, 2008". Pittsburghlive.com. Retrieved 2010-05-07. 
  11. ^ "‘Brady Bunch’ Star’s Memoirs May Be Made Into A Movie Access Hollywood October 25, 2008". Accesshollywood.com. 2008-10-25. Retrieved 2010-05-07. 
  12. ^ okmagazine.com, McCormick Talks Cocaine, Abortions & Syphilis, 16 October 2008. Retrieved 3 October 2009.
  13. ^ Brady Bunch star 'traded drugs for sex' The Times October 14, 2008
  14. ^ a b "Marcia Brady" On Her Drug Use, Paranoia CBS Early Show November 21, 2008". Cbsnews.com. 2008-11-21. Retrieved 2010-05-07. 
  15. ^ "The True Life of Marcia Brady". Drphil.com. Retrieved 2010-05-07. 

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]