Adam Rich Skips 'Eight Is Enough' TV Reunion
By Sam Brand Posted Mar 1st 2010 05:16PM
The 'Today Show' is reuniting one of television's favorite families. On Monday, the Bradfords of late '70s hit 'Eight Is Enough' gathered at NBC studios in New York City ... minus one major cast member. Adam Rich, who's had several publicized run-ins with the law since the show's cancellation, didn't make it to 30 Rock. But the "sweet faced, youngest of the clan" did write in: "I am there in spirit..."
Rich, whose bowl cut is one of TV's most memorable hairdos, was perhaps the biggest draw to a hit show about a newspaper reporter and his eight kids.
"People loved Adam Rich," Dick Van Patten, who played patriarch Tom Bradford, told host Meredith Vieira. "People were naming their newborn babies 'Nicholas,' and they were cutting their children's hair the way Nicholas had his hair cut."
Adam Rich was just 9 years old when 'Eight Is Enough's' first of five seasons premiered in 1977. He made guest appearances on shows such as 'The Love Boat,' 'ChiPs,' and 'Fantasy Island,' and did regular voicework on the animated 'Dungeons & Dragons' after the show's cancellation.
But like many child stars, Rich never reclaimed the success of his youth, and he struggled because of it.
In 1986, Rich dropped out of high school. In 1991, he was arrested for smashing a pharmacy window in an attempt to steal drugs. He was bailed out of jail by TV dad Van Patten after that incident, however he was arrested shortly thereafter for shoplifting. And in 2003, Rich was arrested for drunk driving after nearly crashing into a police car.
It is unclear just why Rich couldn't make it to New York City for the reunion. His letter, which was read by Vieira, left no clue.
"To the Bradfords, my television family," Rich wrote in, "I will always have a deep fondness for each of you in my heart. I consider it not only an honor, but a privilege to be a member of one of TV's greatest families."
'Today' will reunite Suzanne Crough, Danny Bonaduce, David Cassidy and Brian Forster of 'The Partridge Family' on Tuesday, March 2.
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