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Old 08-15-2018, 04:27 AM   #1
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Question How come Estelle Getty got an special recognition "And" credit on THE GOLDEN GIRLS?

I'm not discounting her as an actress, I'm just trying to point out that she wasn't as well known to the general public as the others when the show first started.

But let's put things into perspective, unlike the other three, who'd been working headily in theater, film, and/or TV since their twenties, Getty didn't start acting until her mid-fifties in the mid-1970s. Before The Golden Girls (1985), she had only done a few bit parts in film and television. Her biggest role up until that point was probably as Harvey Fierstein's mother in Torch Song Trilogy (1982) on Broadway, and even that was only a one-scene featured role.

Meanwhile, the other three had fairly recent hit shows: Bea and Rue in Maude and Betty in Mary Tyler Moore; Bea and Betty had also won Emmys. Logically, shouldn't Betty White has been more warranting of the special "And" credit?

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Old 08-15-2018, 04:32 AM   #2
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I wouldn't call "And" a special billing.
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Old 08-15-2018, 10:57 PM   #3
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I wouldn't call "And" a special billing.
Yeah, it depends on people's perspective. It can be thought of as showcasing status (particularly if it's "and so-and-so as so-and-so"), or simply as a nice way of wrapping up the intro credits with "and".

One of my favorite "and" credits is Mama's Family: "and Rue McClanahan as Aunt Fran"

Can you imagine if GG ended with "and Betty White as Rose Nylund" ? Bea would have been lol.
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Old 08-16-2018, 08:41 AM   #4
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I'm not discounting her as an actress, I'm just trying to point out that she wasn't as well known to the general public as the others when the show first started.

But lets put things into perspective, unlike the other three, who'd been working headily in theater, film, and/or TV since their twenties, Getty didn't start acting until her mid-fifties in the mid-1970s. Before The Golden Girls (1985), she had only done a few bit parts in film and television. Her biggest role up until that point was probably as Harvey Fierstein's mother in Torch Song Trilogy (1982) on Broadway, and even that was only a one-scene featured role.

Meanwhile, the other three had fairly recent hit shows: Bea and Rue in Maude and Betty in Mary Tyler Moore; Bea and Betty had also won Emmys. Logically, shouldn't Betty White has been more warranting of the special "And" credit?
Betty and Rue were both on Mama's Family and The Golden Palace together.
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Old 08-16-2018, 08:49 AM   #5
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I wouldn't call "And" a special billing.
It usually is considered one though.
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Old 08-17-2018, 09:28 AM   #6
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It usually is considered one though.
It can give it a different feel when you see that, especially if it's a credit for who's considered a "breakout" character.
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Old 08-18-2018, 05:57 AM   #7
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It can give it a different feel when you see that, especially if it's a credit for who's considered a "breakout" character.
All you have to do is look at some of the ones that had an and in their credits. I know in Three's Company Don Knotts had it. Joan Collins had it on Dynasty and Susan Sullivan on Falcon Crest. I think Tim Reid had it on Simon & Simon. Trying to think of some from the 80's. Oh Mt. T from the A-Team. I think Estelle Getty got it because they expected her to be a breakout character. Usually more famous actors have it .
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Old 08-18-2018, 09:39 AM   #8
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Some film trivia: The movie "Valley of the Dolls" (1967) was originally cast with Judy Garland as the character "Helen Lawson." The original advertisements listed the principal actresses, and then "And, Miss Judy Garland." It was an honorific.
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Old 08-20-2018, 10:00 AM   #9
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Trying to think of some from the 80's.
"And Rue McClanahan as Aunt Fran"

"And Nancy McKeon as Jo"

"And Bob Uecker as George"
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Old 08-20-2018, 07:56 PM   #10
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Yeah, it depends on people's perspective. It can be thought of as showcasing status (particularly if it's "and so-and-so as so-and-so"), or simply as a nice way of wrapping up the intro credits with "and".

One of my favorite "and" credits is Mama's Family: "and Rue McClanahan as Aunt Fran"

Can you imagine if GG ended with "and Betty White as Rose Nylund" ? Bea would have been lol.
And to build on that, for the Mama's Family episodes in which Betty White appeared, she was billed after Rue as "Guest Star Betty White." Same for Carol Burnett and Harvey Korman when they appeared. In the third season, when Betty made her final appearance as Ellen after Golden Girls was already a hit, Betty was listed as "Special Guest Star."
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Old 08-21-2018, 12:33 PM   #11
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And to build on that, for the Mama's Family episodes in which Betty White appeared, she was billed after Rue as "Guest Star Betty White." Same for Carol Burnett and Harvey Korman when they appeared. In the third season, when Betty made her final appearance as Ellen after Golden Girls was already a hit, Betty was listed as "Special Guest Star."
Naturally any guest stars would be billed after the main cast. And I think Betty was probably billed "Special Guest Star" more so because she was no longer a part of the current Mama's Family cast, than being part of the new hit Golden Girls. Sort of like a "favor" to MF that she was making an appearance on it while not being tied to the show in any way.

I always thought it was neat how other members of the family who were not weekly regulars were always seen in family photos around Mama's living room as guest stars in the opening credits. That was a perfect way to bill these relatives of Mama's who were already established in the "Family" sketches.

Although, I have always wished that Aunt Effie, Uncle Roy, and Cousin Cora got family photograph credits in the opening sequences in the episodes where they appeared, since they're relatives too (though in Cousin Cora's case, that would have been a bad spoiler, lol).
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Old 08-21-2018, 12:37 PM   #12
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There's a '90s sitcom "and" credit that is not special at all. Ellen:

"And Arye Gross as Adam"

He was not famous, so obviously that was just a way to wrap up the cast credits in the opening.
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Old 08-21-2018, 02:09 PM   #13
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Naturally any guest stars would be billed after the main cast. And I think Betty was probably billed "Special Guest Star" more so because she was no longer a part of the current Mama's Family cast, than being part of the new hit Golden Girls. Sort of like a "favor" to MF that she was making an appearance on it while not being tied to the show in any way.

I always thought it was neat how other members of the family who were not weekly regulars were always seen in family photos around Mama's living room as guest stars in the opening credits. That was a perfect way to bill these relatives of Mama's who were already established in the "Family" sketches.

Although, I have always wished that Aunt Effie, Uncle Roy, and Cousin Cora got family photograph credits in the opening sequences in the episodes where they appeared, since they're relatives too (though in Cousin Cora's case, that would have been a bad spoiler, lol).
That was always my impression as well. I've mentioned this in at least one thread over on the Mama's Family board but I think it was known for that third-season episode in which Betty White appeared that it was going to be the last time she was on the show (unless Golden Girls ended, giving her a chance to return if wanted, which obviously did not happen).
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Old 08-21-2018, 05:24 PM   #14
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I never actually thought about it, but maybe it was sort of a way to introduce her to the viewing public. Often with young actors, they have an "and introducing" in the opening credits, but Estelle was hardly an ingenue when she was cast on the show, so that wouldn't have been appropriate. I never heard if any of the other cast members objected to her billing.

I remember that Eileen Fulton was always listed at the end of credits for As the World Turns with and Eileen Fulton as Lisa...
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Old 08-21-2018, 05:40 PM   #15
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It can give it a different feel when you see that, especially if it's a credit for who's considered a "breakout" character.
That's how I always looked at it
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