rxwine
rxwine
Joined: Feb 28, 2010
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January 2nd, 2021 at 7:02:34 AM permalink
The Howells and Ginger were the ‘fish out of water’ characters for sure.

What were they seeing on the 3 hour tour?
Quasimodo? Does that name ring a bell?
Gialmere
Gialmere
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January 2nd, 2021 at 6:36:58 PM permalink


There's something weird.

Dawn Wells was born with a silver spoon in her mouth. In addition to the family's successful Wells Cargo shipping business (based in Reno), her father was a major investor in the Thunderbird hotel/casino in Las Vegas. He was the managing director for five years, owned a restaurant inside the casino and was the main force behind the creation of the Thunderbird Downs racetrack. (The track was successful but only lasted two years because the land it was on became too valuable to waste on mere horse racing.)

In interviews, Wells said she got into beauty pageants (Miss Nevada, Miss America), because of the scholarship opportunities. But her family could have easily afforded sending her to a place like USC without even blinking.

Wells was the only Gilligan's Island cast member to get royalties from the show's reruns. Her husband at the time was her agent and he negotiated a small percentage from a bored studio executive convinced the show was a turkey. (He wasn't alone. Natalie Schafer also thought the show was a loser but accepted the role of Mrs Howell since filming the pilot meant a free trip to Hawaii.) The show only ran three seasons but became (like I Love Lucy and Star Trek) one of those perpetual rerun phenomenons. Even today you can watch it. In fact, Well's herself hosted a Gilligan's Island marathon on METV around five years ago. A small percentage of GI reruns = huuuge money.

Like the other actors, she became typecast by the show. Yet she used this to write books from her character: "The Gilligan's Island Cookbook", "What would Mary Ann do?" etc. This also kept her semi-active on the talk show circuit.

The only negative press I can remember her having was when she was busted for sending marijuana through the mail. It was small quantities to friends so a good lawyer probably handled it with ease.

So riddle me this,

How does a lady from a wealthy family, who was on a hit TV show from which she received endless royalties from, end up, near the end of her life, flat broke and begging her fans to help her with her disastrous finances?

Her fans responded on a Go Fund Me drive by sending her around 200k to keep her afloat.

Only in America.
Have you tried 22 tonight? I said 22.
ChumpChange
ChumpChange
Joined: Jun 15, 2018
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January 2nd, 2021 at 6:43:48 PM permalink
In 2014, Wells said during an interview, that she was paid a salary roughly equivalent to $50,000 in today’s dollars and never received any residuals. "A misconception is that we must be wealthy, rolling in the dough, because we got residuals. We didn’t really get a dime. I think my salary — of course, I was low on the totem pole, Ginger [Tina Louise] and Thurston [Jim Backus] got more — was $750 a week. Sherwood Schwartz, our producer, reportedly made $90 million on the reruns alone!" Celebritynetworth.com put her net worth at $50 thousand at the time of her death on December 30.
https://meaww.com/dawn-wells-net-worth-gilligans-island-mary-ann-was-nearly-broke-2008-recession-medical-costs
ChumpChange
ChumpChange
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January 2nd, 2021 at 6:53:24 PM permalink
In 1955, The Thunderbird was closed down for a short time by the Tax Commission after articles appearing in the Las Vegas Sun alleged that Meyer Lansky and other underworld figures held hidden interest in the property.

The Thunderbird saw many stars/shows perform on its stages including Rosemary Clooney, Larry Storch, Mills Brothers, Morton Downey, Orson Bean, and Dale Robertson, Kaye Ballard, Belle Barth, Henny Youngman, Breck Wall, The Treniers, Dorothy Shay Show, the Donald O'Connor Revue , Mel Torme, Dick Shawn, Frank Gorshin, Edie Adams, Jim Bailey, Marty Barris, Pete Candoli, Bobby Goldsboro, Tony Martin, China Doll Revue, Ecstasy on Ice, and Les Foley's Glacees, showcased All Star Ice Revue, Follies on Ice, Scandals on Ice with George Arnold, Sketches on Ice starring Edie Adams, and Summer Ice Revue with Sammy Shore, South Pacific, Flower Drum Song starring Jack Soo, Latin Fire '71 with Marta Cisneros, Latin Fire '72 starring Freddy Manjon, and Latin Fire '73 starring Manolo Torrente.

https://www.lvol.com/hotels/history/h-thunderbird.html
rxwine
rxwine
Joined: Feb 28, 2010
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January 2nd, 2021 at 7:54:30 PM permalink
Quote: ChumpChange

In 2014, Wells said during an interview, that she was paid a salary roughly equivalent to $50,000 in today’s dollars and never received any residuals. "A misconception is that we must be wealthy, rolling in the dough, because we got residuals. We didn’t really get a dime. I think my salary — of course, I was low on the totem pole, Ginger [Tina Louise] and Thurston [Jim Backus] got more — was $750 a week. Sherwood Schwartz, our producer, reportedly made $90 million on the reruns alone!" Celebritynetworth.com put her net worth at $50 thousand at the time of her death on December 30.
https://meaww.com/dawn-wells-net-worth-gilligans-island-mary-ann-was-nearly-broke-2008-recession-medical-costs



Her IMDB does look like mostly bit parts after GI.

I wonder if type casting is as much of a problem today. I see many actors doing all kinds of different roles jumping from TV to movies and back again. And the stage.

Though it's still likely pretty difficult to get in the top paid group.
Quasimodo? Does that name ring a bell?
AZDuffman
AZDuffman
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January 3rd, 2021 at 6:55:35 AM permalink
Quote: rxwine



Her IMDB does look like mostly bit parts after GI.

I wonder if type casting is as much of a problem today. I see many actors doing all kinds of different roles jumping from TV to movies and back again. And the stage.

Though it's still likely pretty difficult to get in the top paid group.



Smart actors and actresses will male typecasting work for them. Some smart ones work a gig then get into investing, like Wayne Rogers and Gabe Kapplan.
All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others
jqneedareset
jqneedareset
Joined: Dec 11, 2020
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January 3rd, 2021 at 7:01:08 PM permalink
Quote: ChumpChange

"A misconception is that we must be wealthy, rolling in the dough, because we got residuals. We didn’t really get a dime. I think my salary — of course, I was low on the totem pole, Ginger [Tina Louise] and Thurston [Jim Backus] got more — was $750 a week. Sherwood Schwartz, our producer, reportedly made $90 million on the reruns alone!"


If I recall correctly, the 3 Stooges ( actually 4 or 5 ) were nickel and dimed on salary as well. Same ol' story, the Rich get Richer, and.....

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