Leave It to Beaver (TV Series 1957–1963) Poster



Although the series was still earning good ratings, its star, Jerry Mathers, wanted to retire from acting to focus on his education upon entering high school. As a result, it was agreed to halt production and the series became the first prime time American production to have a series finale.
This was in a way the first show to show a toilet and in a way it also wasn't. They didn't actually show the toilet pedestal and seat, but they did show the toilet tank and flush handle.
Barbara Billingsley told an interviewer in 2007 the reason she always wore pearls on camera is because of a small indentation just above her sternum that didn't photograph well.
This show made its debut on the same day the Soviets launched Sputnik (4 October 1957)
Hugh Beaumont held a Master of Theology degree from the University of Southern California and was an ordained minister.
The pilot of the show, "It's a Small World", was first broadcast on April 23, 1957 on a syndicated anthology series, Studio 57. It did not have a laugh track or the opening a closing theme. It never aired within the series itself.
The house on Universal's backlot that was used for the exterior shots of the Cleavers' second home (in Season 3, after the move to ABC) was later used for the exterior shots of Marcus Welby's house. in Marcus Welby, M.D. (1969).
When filming was shifted to Universal's backlot (then known as Universal International) a new house was built. This house remained as a standing set and was later used for many other television programs and motion pictures. It is a popular attraction on Universal's Tour. More than forty years after the show ended, the still standing set is known as "The Cleaver House."
In addition to his role as Ward Cleaver, Hugh Beaumont also did some writing and directing for the series.
It was once stated that the Cleavers lived 30 miles from the coast.
There are two indications that the Cleavers lived in Wisconsin. In one scene, Wally mentions the high school band is going to Madison to play for the governor. In another episode, the Cleavers are going to a pro football game and repeatedly refer to the Packers.
Beaver's elementary school was Grant Ave. School, which was a grammar school, not an elementary school; meaning grades K-8.
The name of the state Mayfield was in was never mentioned, although it was said to be somewhere in the Midwest. But in one episode, the Beaver wanted to earn money with a paper route, to join-in with a friend to buy a surf board. That would suggest Mayfield is near the ocean.
Richard Deacon's appearances as pompous Fred Rutherford diminished in the last season as he was also portraying Mel Cooley on the The Dick Van Dyke Show (1961) at the same time.
The address of the first house the Cleavers owned in Mayfield was 485 Mapleton Drive, a reference to first season network CBS's then New York headquarters at 485 Madison Avenue. The address of their second home was 211 Pine Street.
In the pilot episode, the part of "Frankie" was played by a young Harry Shearer.
The character Eddie Haskell was ranked #2 in TV Guide's list of "TV's 10 Biggest Brats" (27 March 2005 issue).
Eddie called everyone "Sam".
Edgar Buchanan, who appeared as the title character in Leave It to Beaver: Captain Jack (1957), would later return as Wally and Beaver's Uncle Billy.
Larry Mondello's sister, although talked about, is never shown. His father is shown in one episode when all the kids gather back stage after the school play when Larry played a hop toad.
The character 'Ward Cleaver' was ranked #28 in TV Guide's list of the "50 Greatest TV Dads of All Time" (20 June 2004 issue).
Sponsors of "Leave It to Beaver" include General Electric Lightbulbs and Purina Dog Chow.
A popular rumor that surfaced about the show years later is that notorious rock legend Alice Cooper, in his younger years, portrayed Eddie Haskell on the show. This stems from a misinterpretation of an interview that Cooper had, in which he said that he was Eddie Haskell as a kid. He, of course, meant that he was similar in behavior and attitude to Haskell, Not that he portrayed him on the show.
Ward made at least four references to having attended high school in Shaker Heights, a town located between Mayfield and Cleveland, rendering yet another suggestion that Mayfield was most likely in Ohio.
Produced by Gomalco Productions (1957-61) and Kayro Productions (1961-63) in association with Revue Productions. Produced at Republic Studios (1957-59) and Universal-International Studios (1959-63). Originally syndicated by MCA-TV, more recently by Program Exchange.
Most of the music heard of the series was not composed specifically for it. Much of it came from stock libraries of music and the like.
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