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Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Remembering Dick Van Patten 1928 - 2015

Actor Dick Van Patten, who died Tuesday at age 86, was best known for his role as patriarch Tom Bradford on the 1977-81 ABC series, Eight Is Enough. He made his Broadway debut at age seven in the 1935 drama, Tapestry in Gray, and his first television role was in the 1949-57 CBS series, Mama. Other television credits include Young Dr. Malone (1961-62), The Partners (1971-72), The New Dick Van Dyke Show (1973-74), When Things Were Rotten (1975) and WIOU (1990-91). And in September 1976, he played the ship's doctor on The Love Boat, the first pilot movie before the show became an ABC series.

Van Patten also appeared in many films, including Charly (1968), Beware! The Blob (1972), Freaky Friday (1976), High Anxiety (1977), Spaceballs (1987) and Robin Hood: Men in Tights (1993). Other Broadway credits include Thorton Wilder's The Skin of Our Teeth (1942-43), Lovers and Other Strangers (1968) and Thieves (1974).

Van Patten is survived by his wife of 62 years, Pat, and their three sons, actors Vincent Van Patten, Nels Van Patten and Jimmy Van Patten, as well as his sister, actress Joyce Van Patten, and his half-brother, director/actor Timothy Van Patten.

Below I've selected some videos to celebrate Dick Van Patten's life and career.

An episode of the NBC sitcom, The Partners, which aired on January 8, 1972.

The first episode of Mel Brooks' ABC sitcom, When Things Were Rotten, which aired on September 10, 1975.

The opening credits of The Love Boat movie, which aired on September 17, 1976.

A 1977 promo for Eight Is Enough and all of the opening credits for the series.

A 1986 "Broadway on Showtime" production of the William Inge play, Picnic, with Jennifer Jason Leigh, Gregory Harrison and Rue McClanahan.

A scene from the 1987 Mel Brooks film, Spaceballs.

The opening credits of the 1990-91 CBS drama, WIOU.

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