Where Are They Now?
The show managed to film over 200 episodes and was a triumphant phenomenon. The nearly all-female cast never failed to make us laugh, and we all could not wait to see what the group were up to next. After treating us with television gold for nearly a decade, where are these familiar faces now?
Charlotte Rae – Then
Charlotte took on the role of the housekeeper, Mrs. Garrett, at Eastland prep school whose duty was to be in charge of the seven girls hosted in her house. While this was the plot for the first season, season two saw a significant change to the series, which focused on fewer characters but gave them more depth. From this time, Charlotte’s character of Mrs. Garrett saw her go from playing a housekeeper to then playing the role of a businesswoman and dietician.
Charlotte Rae – Now
Charlotte was credited for her work in the television sitcom and won an Emmy Award nomination for her role as Mrs. Garrett. Since playing that role, 91-year-old Charlotte has appeared in several other TV shows and most recently worked on a film called Ricky and the Flash where she worked alongside Meryl Streep, Rick Springfield, and Kevin Kline. Although The Facts of Life came to a sad end, Charlotte continued her career as her fun and bubbly self, like many fans knew her to be.
Lisa Whelchel – Then
When Lisa began work on The Facts of Life, she was just a young 14-year-old who won the role of the beautiful, yet snobby, Blair Warner. Her role began by playing a stuck-up teen from a wealthy family who was always used to getting her way. As the years went on, however, Lisa became a lovable young girl, regardless of her constant rebellious actions. By season two, she put her mischief behind her and played the stereotypical young teen who cared most about shopping.
Lisa Whelchel – Now
From playing Blair Warner in her teenage years, Lisa went on to have a very successful career in music. In fact, while she became a much-loved actress, her real passion belonged to religion and music. As a devout Christian, Lisa decided to merge the two and created a Christian music album called All Because of You, which earned her a Grammy Award nomination in 1984. She did continue to feature on our TV screens with a role on CBS’s Survivor: Philippines, where she impressively came in second place.
Kim Fields – Then
A prominent feature on the show was 10-year-old Dorothy Ramsey, best known as Tootie. Played by Kim Fields, Tootie may have been a young cast member where she was often seen skating around on her roller blades, but her role portrayed her beyond her years. On the show, Tootie would address more serious issues such as racism and would call other children out on their blunt comments in the show. She may have been young, but there was no getting past Tootie with anything.
Kim Fields – Now
She was the popular 10-year-old who stole the show, so there was no forgetting Kim Fields when the series came to an end. Following the end of the sitcom, she appeared on a show called Living Single for five years and also participated in The Facts of Life reunion movies and still interviews alongside the other cast members. Fields then took a turn to reality TV, where she appeared on The Real Housewives of Atlanta, as well as a contestant on Dancing with the Stars.
Mindy Cohn – Then
Mindy happened to be at the right place at the right time when she was chosen to play the role of Natalie. The 13-year-old attended an all-girls prep school at the time, which happened to be the school Charlotte Rae visited to understand her future character and get a better understanding of The Facts of Life storyline. Mindy’s personality caught Charlotte’s attention on her visit, so much so, that Charlotte convinced the show’s producers to write in a role especially for Mindy.
Mindy Cohn – Now
Charlotte was not the only person who was mesmerized by Mindy, and fans of the show were constantly kept laughing by Mindy and her character, Natalie. After being cast for The Facts of Life, Mindy became aware of her talent for making people laugh and continued to pursue comedic roles. She voiced the character of Velma in the Scooby Doo franchise during 2002 to 2015, and also starred in big screen hits such as 21 Jump Street, The Help, and Charles In Charge.
Molly Ringwald – Then
When the show went through its many changes when it began filming for season two, Molly Ringwald suffered at first hand. After playing Molly Parker in season one, Ringwald was axed from the series when the changes were put in place. This actress was not going to leave quietly, however, and Molly made her voice heard after getting the axe. Nevertheless, although at the time she may have not realized, this may have just been a blessing in disguise for the young actress.
Molly Ringwald – Now
While The Facts of Life could not find the right fit for Molly to remain in the show, Ringwald went on to star in other life-changing roles. After playing the short-lived role of Molly Parker, Molly starred in other 80’s hits such as Sixteen Candles, The Breakfast Club, and Pretty In Pink. These appearances were triumphant for Ringwald’s career, and the actress can still be seen in both film and TV shows, making her a face and a name to remember.
George Clooney – Then
The ever-so-charming George Clooney became a cast member of the sitcom during season seven and remained as a prominent character until the end of season 8. Playing the sweet and alluring handyman, George Burnett, this was just the beginning for Clooney’s blooming acting career. Unknown of this fact at the time, Clooney made his mark on the show when he filmed the memorable scene of his famous smooch with co-star Lisa Whelchel, who played Blair. It was after the show that George Clooney became a worldwide superstar.
George Clooney – Now
Fans could catch Clooney playing Dr. Doug Ross on ER following his stint on The Facts of Life, which was Clooney’s breakthrough role. After having two such prominent roles in television, he became a household name and not just for his acting talent. There was no denying that George Clooney is kind on the eyes, and has often been cited as the most good-looking man alive. After his stint on television, Clooney moved to film, of which his movies made millions and were award-winning hits.
Cloris Leachman – Then
Cloris Leachman joined the cast of The Facts of Life during season seven as a replacement for Mrs. Garrett’s character. Leachman played the role of Beverly Ann after Charlotte Rae decided she had had enough of the show and wished to be cut. On the show, she was written off by traveling to Africa, and that is when Cloris’s character came to be the girls’ new caretaker and shop owner at the same time. Charlotte was both happy to be cut and to have Cloris play her replacement on the show.
Cloris Leachman – Now
Cloris has had a successful acting career and has the awards to prove it. She has won a total of 8 Primetime Emmy Awards, which is more than any other actor, as well as, an Academy Award and a Daytime Emmy Award. She continued to show off her unique sense of humor and charm in The Beverly Hillbillies, Malcolm in the Middle, The Fox Show, and Raising Hope. Showing no signs of slowing down, Leachman has also taken part in Dancing with the Stars.
John Lawlor – Then
John Lawler was another short-lived cast member in The Facts of Life, and his role of Headmaster Steven Bradley was cut after season one. Alongside the four other girls, Lawler was seen by producers to have no more purpose in the series, and his role was no longer a big feature on the show. Rather, his time in season one was to set the background story straight, and there was no more room for Lawler’s character to grow. Instead, more attention was given to the remaining characters.
John Lawlor – Now
Following his short stint on The Facts of Life, John has had other TV roles and could most notably be recognized as a cast member on the popular drama, Breaking Bad. He has also starred in L.A. Law, Knots Landing, Mr. Belvedere, Barney Miller, The Rockford Files, Ellery Queen, Baa Baa Black Sheep, and Alice. John has also had roles in film and appeared in movies such as National Lampoon Goes to the Movies, and Billy Jack Goes to Washington.
Felice Schachter – Then
Felice Schachter, who played Nancy in season one, was another of the sitcom’s cast members to be cut from the series when it came to season two. Her role was, nonetheless, significant for setting the storyline of the show and explaining the background for the entire series. Following her short stint, Felice was able to have a successful career within the entertainment industry and featured in both TV and film. In the end, her role as Nancy was a great start to pave the way for her future career.
Felice Schachter – Now
After getting the axe from The Facts of Life casting, Felice didn’t do too bad. Sticking to acting, she went on to star in the triumphant movie Zapped! and then decided to test her abilities behind the camera, as opposed to starring in front of it. Schachter began working as a production assistant and assistant director in films and commercials after that. Her works most notably include JAG, The Citizen, High Tide, Law and Order: Special Victims Unit, and 30 Years to Life.
Julie Piekarski – Then
When Julie Piekarski graced our screens as Sue Ann Weaver, fans may have noticed her as the Musketeer who was previously part of The Mickey Mouse Club variety created by Walt Disney. The beautiful, blonde bombshell was yet another cast member who was cut after season one, but while this was the end of her time on The Facts of Life, it was not the end of her acting career. Julie starred in several other roles and primarily stuck to the small screen.
Julie Piekarski – Now
While her time on The Facts of Life did not last very long, it was the role that Julie would remain best associated with. Nevertheless, Julie also appeared on other comedy and drama series during her career, such as Quincy M.E., Three’s Company, The Best of Times, and ABC Afterschool Specials. Julie also became an entertainment reporter for KPLR-TV, which allowed the former actress to work close to home in St. Louis, Missouri like she had hoped to do.
McKenzie Astin – Then
The 12-year-old that tried to charm every girl on the show was played by the confident McKenzie Astin. Portraying the role of Andy Moffett, Astin’s role was present from 1985 to 1988, and again towards the end of the series. The cheeky chap entered the show by asking Edna’s Edibles for a job in the hope of making some extra cash. While money was constantly on his mind, Andy was also a ladies man who wanted to impress the women on the show at the same time.
McKenzie Astin – Now
McKenzie has grown up a lot since his time on the show, and his career resume since The Facts of Life is nothing short of roles in some of the most popular series. He has starred on leading and award-winning shows such as, Psych, Scandal, Lost, NCIS, House and Grey’s Anatomy. He has also had a successful career stint in film and appeared in top rated movies including The Last Days of Disco, Wyatt Earp, and The Evening Star.
Julie Anne Haddock – Then
While there were characters from season one who were given the boot and to never return, this was not the same for Julie Anne who played Cindy Webster. Originally believing she did not have the “it” factor to be a prominent character on the show and continue in the following seasons, the show producers felt differently during seasons two and three, often bringing the character of Cindy back to add a little spice. The decision of theirs proved to be a good one.
Julie Anne Haddock – Now
The Facts of Life gave many actors a platform into the world of acting, and they went on to have successful careers following their stint on the show. This was not the same for Julie, whose last appearance on the show was on an episode in 1986, and she decided to quit the limelight and start a family. While she chose to remain close to the life of the stars, Julie’s Californian home was more family-orientated, and she focused on attending Church with her children and doing volunteering work.
Sherrie Austin – Then
Playing her native Australian self, Sherrie Austin played exchange student Pippa McKenna in The Facts of Life, who came to Eastland School from the Australian Koolunga Academy. Pippa was a more eccentric and vibrant character alongside her American co-stars, with an unusual sense of humor and one of the girls who enjoyed joining Andy in his tricks to make more money. Sherrie was on The Facts of Life from 1987 to 1988, but also made a comeback appearance in season nine for 15 episodes.
Sherrie Austin – Now
Sherrie’s real passion belonged to music, and while she became recognizable for her acting stint on The Facts of Life, the Australian star actually came to the U.S. for a different reason. She had left her native home when she was part of a band called Colorhaus in the 1990’s and stumbled upon acting. After The Facts of Life, she topped the Billboard charts in 2003 with her hit, ‘Streets of Heaven,’ and went on to make five albums, with her last released in 2011.
Geri Jewell – Then
Mesmerized by Geri’s performance at the Media Access Awards, the producer of The Facts of Life, Norman Lear, wanted this lady to be in the series. Not being able to take his eyes off her during her energetic and captivating performance, Geri was discovered purely by chance and got the role of Geri Taylor during the second season in 1980, up until 1984. In fact, Geri had cerebral palsy and was the first person with this diagnosis to have a role in television.
Geri Jewell – Now
Geri’s career continued to flourish following her role on The Facts of Life, and she appeared in several popular TV series including HBO’s Deadwood, The Young and the Restless, Glee, Alcatraz, Strong Medicine, and 21 Jump Street. Geri also attempted film and made movies including The Night of the White Pants and Two of a Kind. Regardless of her disability, Geri does not let this single her out from the entertainment world, and to this day, she continues to star in comedic roles and bring smiles and laughter to others.
Alex Rocco – Then
Alex Rocco had a part-time role playing Jo’s father, Charlie Polniaczek, and only appeared in 11 episodes from 1981 to 1988. Although he was not cut like other actors after season one, the inconsistency of his appearances meant he did not have a leading role on the show and took other acting gigs to enhance his career at the time. He appeared in movies such as Return to Horror High, Scenes from the Goldmine, and Lady in White, as well as television roles including The Golden Girls, St. Elsewhere, and The A-Team.
Alex Rocco – Now
Regardless of the fact that Alex Rocco was not one of the main characters in The Facts of Life, his small role led to big things and a great acting career. He starred in shows such as Episodes and Maron, and in films including The Wedding Planner, The Job, Find Me Guilty, and Scammerhead. During his career, Rocco appeared alongside many other big names in the business and he was very successful. He sadly passed away on July 18, 2015, at the age of 79.
Roger Perry – Then
Roger Perry only appeared in ten episodes on The Facts of Life, but his role as Charles Parker during 1981 to 1983 was memorable nonetheless. His most remembered quote from the time of the show was when he spoke to Edna and said: “You know there are parents here whose names I’ve only seen on checks? And I’ve been getting angry phone calls from them all week. They are furious I allowed those books to be removed from the library. I mean Edna, they hate me.”
Roger Perry – Now
While The Facts of Life paved the way for many actors into the world of Hollywood, Roger’s role as Charles was the end of the road for the actor. Nevertheless, his long contribution to the industry was not ignored and, Roger, alongside his wife, received a Golden Globe Star on the Walk of Stars in Palm Springs, California. Roger’s wife, Joyce Bulifant was also an actress and received her star after having successful roles in both TV and Broadway.
Jami Gertz – Then
Playing the role of Blair’s best friend, Jami starred in The Facts of Life to play Boots St. Clair, but she was not one of the leading characters. During her time on the show, she also took on other projects during this time, such as Dreams, Family Ties and For Members Only. Her acting skills shined significantly when she had roles on Diff’rent Strokes and Square Pegs, both of which led to a very successful acting career for Jami.
Jami Gertz – Now
Since The Facts of Life, Jami’s most recognized works include her roles on Ally McBeal, ER, Still Standing, Entourage and This Is Us. However, acting aside, Jami is a highly successful businesswoman, and is, in fact, one of the richest women alive. She and her husband, Anthony Ressler, are part of the same investment group bought out by MLB franchise Milwaukee Brewers. Regardless of her wealth and fortune, Jami continues to pursue her passion for acting and showcasing her craft.
Marj Dusay – Then
Marj Dusay was a guest star on the show, playing the role of Blair’s mother, Monica, for just eight episodes altogether. Marj’s character was a more serious one compared to the others, especially on a comedy show, where the premise of the show was to keep people laughing. Marj played the relatable and dependable figure who, although different to the other characters, was an important feature to the show during 1981-1987, and made sure the entire show was not a complete mockery.
Marj Dusay – Now
Marj is best known for her role as Alexandra Spaulding on Guiding Light, in which she starred on the soap from 1993 to 2009. With great success in a soap series, Marj also appeared on the legendary soap All My Children for four years playing Vanessa Bennett. While Marj played the role of Vanessa who was a scornful and destructive character, in her real life and off screen, Marj is considered to be a very low-key mother of two who recently retired.
Jenny O’Hara – Then
Jenny O’Hara had already made her mark in the acting world when she was cast to play Miss Emily Mahoney in season one of The Facts of Life. Her role in the show was the hilarious sidekick for Mrs. Garrett and, although she only appeared in four episodes, she made her mark on the show. Her acting career began in the early 1960’s, and after she had performed on stage for Promises Promises, it was clear that Jenny was made for entertainment and she was not going anywhere.
Jenny O’Hara – Now
This wife and mother of two has continued to balance her family life while still having a highly successful acting career. She has starred in many different projects where she has had to play various characters and roles, highlighting how good of an actress she is. Since her small but highly recognizable role in The Facts of Life, she has starred in television programs such as Transparent, The Mindy Project, The King of Queens, Big Love, Costello, and Dangerous Minds.
Ryan Cassidy – Then
No one can forget the charming Kevin Metcalf who was played by Ryan Cassidy, the youngest out of the Cassidy bunch. Much like his brother David Cassidy, it was no secret that Kevin had exceptional acting skills and was the reason he was cast in 1985 for five episodes in the hit series. He is remembered for his constant teasing towards Blair, but his believable character is what made his role such a success. Even though his time on the show was short, it was sweet.
Ryan Cassidy – Now
Ryan enjoyed his time on The Facts of Life, but he soon discovered that acting was not for him. After attempting another acting gig during the 80’s, he decided to substitute this skill for another and went behind the camera in the art department. He worked behind the scenes of many successful shows including The Secret World of Alex Mack, JAG, The King of Queens, Good Luck Charlie, and Muppets Tonight. Ryan has since admitted he would consider getting back into acting if it was for more dramatic roles.
Juliette Lewis – Then
Juliette Lewis was introduced on The Facts Of Life during the final season when she was cast as the role of Terry Rankin. Her character was initially introduced with the hope of working on a spinoff series, however, this never actually happened since Terry was not a strong enough character to have her own show. In the end, she only featured on two episodes on The Facts of Life in 1988, but this was just the beginning for Juliette and was a role which paved the way for a very successful career.
Juliette Lewis – Now
Since her short stint on The Facts of Life, Juliette has become a successful award-winning actress and is best known for her role in Martin Scorses’s 1991 film, Cape Fear. Her unique and striking role showed off her acting skills so superbly that she was awarded a Golden Globe and Academy Award nomination for this film. She has also appeared in other highly acclaimed films such as What’s Eating Gilbert Grape, Nerve, The Other Sister, and August: Osage County.
Scott Bryce – Then
Scott Bryce was cast to play Jo’s love interest, Rick Bonner, and his casting was perfectly timed for the transition of the show in the final season. During the last season, the idea was that all the girls would end high school and enter adulthood. To mark the end of this milestone, all the girls on the show would be accompanied by their first loves who would help them leave their teenage years behind and start their new lives. Therefore, Scott was cast to accompany Jo.
Scott Bryce – Now
After The Facts of Life, Scott continued to act but also tested out his skills as a director. He was successful in this role of his, but he was also seen in front of the camera once again on shows such as The Golden Girls, Who’s the Boss?, Murphy Brown, and L.A. Law as well as the films Lethal Weapon 3, and Up Close and Personal. These days, Scott has decided to stick with acting and has been in shows such as Deception, Blue Bloods, and The Good Fight.
Dawn Gregg – Then
Dawn Gregg may have only originally featured on The Facts of Life playing Jenny for three episodes, but she was not cut entirely after season one like many of the other girls. Dawn rejoined the cast at a later time to add a special twist and give the show a bit of a pickup. Dawn did just that, and her role gave The Facts of Life the dynamic addition they needed for the series. This short role of hers was a memorable performance, and she certainly helped the show give it the boost it needed.
Dawn Gregg – Now
You may wonder where Dawn went after her stint on The Facts of Life, or failed to see her face once again on the small screen. That is because Dawn took a long hiatus away from acting to focus on her family and became a proud mother of five. She did not return to acting until 2012, marking a large amount of time away from the industry, and a risky one at that. As of late, however, she has focused on short, artistic films.
Eve Plumb – Then
While starring on The Facts of Life would have been impressive for any actor, Eve was cast as Meg after she had already made a name for herself on The Brady Bunch. Having played the young Jan Brady, Eve was the celebrity casting who made an appearance on The Facts of Life most probably to bring in the viewers from the hit series. She was cast as a low-key character since she would only appear in a total of just two episodes for the series.
Eve Plumb – Now
Eve may have starred in two of the most legendary hit series, but a little fact about the actress is sure to blow people away even more so. At just 11-years-old, Eve was the proud owner of a house, having purchased her home for $55,000. What is even more impressive, is that this same house was then sold recently by Eve for a stunning $3.9 million. In regards to acting, Eve continues to be seen on the small screen in shows such as Law and Order and Days of Our Lives.
David Ackroyd – Then
David Ackroyd only featured in two episodes on The Facts of Life, since his original casting was for an alternative agenda. David was originally cast to then star in a spinoff series all about a male school called The Stone Military Academy where he would play Major Dorsey. This spinoff show was pulled after the pilot episode, and the motive behind casting David was not as planned. However, his short time on The Facts of Life would lead to future successful acting roles.
David Ackroyd – Now
David is best known for going on to be a successful star on both the big and small screen, with roles in Xena Warrior Princess, Walker Texas Ranger, A Peaceable Kingdom, The Real Adventures of Jonny Quest, and even starred in the documentary The Best Bar in America. David would primarily take roles which reflected his strong demeanor and held great importance including playing a doctor, lawyer and government official. Alongside acting, David is married and has two daughters.
Jennifer Barlow – Then
Since the The Facts of Life aired for an impressive nine years, it is no surprise that it took many shifts and turns to keep it entertaining and a fan favorite. In 1983, there was yet another guest appearance to give the show a boost, and this was done by Jennifer Barlow who played Alicia. Even though she was cast for just a minor two episodes, there was no missing this beauty on the show. Starring in just two episodes was enough to set Jennifer on to have a budding acting career.
Jennifer Barlow – Now
Since she already had her foot in the door within the entertainment world, Jennifer decided to try out new skills and test her talents elsewhere. Very much like her co-workers, Jennifer went on to try producing and directing, as well as television and film editing. Nevertheless, her passion for acting remained, and Jennifer continued to be cast on hit shows during the 80’s such as Dallas, Nine to Five, The Golden Palace, The Jeffersons, Star Trek: The Next Generation, Beverly Hills 90210, and Key West.
Mayim Bialik – Then
Mayim joined The Facts of Life cast at the end of the series with the plan by producers to then cast her in the spinoff series. Since that was not successful, Mayim’s stint on the show as Jennifer Cole was a short one and she only appeared on the show for just two episodes in 1988. However, Mayim is not a name that has become forgotten, and this little girl has become one of the leading ladies in a television series.
Mayim Bialik – Now
If you didn’t know already, Mayim stars as Dr. Amy Farrah Fowler, a Neuroscientist, in one of the biggest shows on television. In fact, due to her role on The Big Bang Theory, Mayim is one of the most recognized actresses, and cannot go down the street without being stopped by a group of fans. Additionally, Mayim has a Ph.D. in Neuroscience, and is probably the reason why she is so perfect for the role she is portraying – alongside many other talents she possesses!
Seth Green – Then
Another casting decision in the final season was Seth Green, who was meant to feature in the upcoming spinoff show. As we know, this never happened, and Seth’s character of Adam Brinkerhoff was a short-lived one on The Facts of Life. However, Seth was not out of work for long as, that same year, he landed three other roles on Big Business, Divided We Stand, and My Stepmother Is an Alien. The year of 1984 marked the beginning of Seth Green becoming a Hollywood favorite.
Seth Green – Now
Seth Green went on to star on many of favorite family television shows, including Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the Austin Powers sequels, That 70’s Show, and Entourage, to name a few. He has also done voice-overs for shows such as American Dad!, and Family Guy, voicing Chris Griffin, and is still very much on the scene becoming a credited director, writer, and producer alongside his acting career. As for his personal life, Green married fellow actress, Clare Grant on May 1, 2010, in North Carolina.
Loren Lester – Then
Loren Lester appeared on The Facts of Life from 1981 to 1987, however, he only appeared in eight episodes during this time. He may have not appeared on consecutive episodes, but his role did hold value and importance since he developed a close-knit relationship with Nancy’s character, Jo. Since he was not a primary or leading character on the series, Loren had the time during these years to also try other roles in the industry, at which time he tried out voice-over work.
Loren Lester – Now
His trial in voice-over work proved to be a wise choice since Loren landed the iconic and well-remembered role as the voice of Robin in the animated series of Batman. He has also gone on to become a stage actor, director and playwright – Loren has admitted he considers writing a form of therapy. Moreover, his time in front of the camera also continued, and Loren landed roles in popular TV series such as Desperate Housewives, Criminal Minds, Two and a Half Men, Parenthood, and Curb Your Enthusiasm.
Nancy McKeon – Then
15-year-old Nancy became one of the most dominant characters on The Facts of Life since joining the cast in the second season. Taking on the role of Jo, Nancy was cast during the series shake-up and was a perfect fit for freshening up the show. When she was originally cast, Jo was the big-mouthed, cheeky, and rebellious teenager, who held a boyish but charming appeal. Towards the end of the show, the character of Jo softened, and she was more feminine and appealing.
Nancy McKeon – Now
With such a prominent role in the hit series, it was no surprise that Nancy continued to showcase her talents further. She starred in television productions such as Sonny with a Chance on the Disney Channel and also in television movies including, A Cry for Help: The Tracey Thurman Story, The Wrong Woman, and Comfort and Joy. However, Nancy is still very much associated with her successful stint on The Facts of Life. In her personal life, she has been married since 2003, and she has two kids.