The original cast of 'The Addams Family': Where are they now?
Creepy! Kooky! Altogether ooky! The original Addams Family TV show has become a part of our collective consciousness.
The dad, Gomez (John Astin), is a loony millionaire who loves losing money in the stock market. Morticia (Carolyn Jones), the mom, grows a man-eating plant called Cleopatra. Pugsley (Ken Weatherwax), their son, likes to blow up dynamite caps, and their daughter Wednesday (Lisa Loring) plays with a headless doll named Marie Antoinette.
Like a lot of cult classics, The Addams Family turned out to be more successful in syndication than it ever was during its original run. Based on Charles Addams' cartoons in The New Yorker, the show aired on ABC from September 1964 to September 1966, finishing in 23rd place in the ratings its first season, behind the competition — CBS' similarly ghoulish sitcom The Munsters. But the years have been kind to Gomez, Morticia, and their brood (Addams gave them their monikers for the TV show; they had no names in his cartoons).
Time, however, has been less gracious to the cast. Only two of the original eight members are still alive.
Blossom Rock, who played Grandmama Addams, died in 1978, at age 82. Rock did not work much following the series, but she had a decades-long career in film and TV prior to the series, largely in a variety of small background and supporting roles.
Lumbering Ted Cassidy, who played Lurch and Thing (the hand), died after open-heart surgery in 1979, at 46. Cassidy worked extensively in the years following The Addams Family, and had roles on a wide variety of TV series throughout the 1960s and 1970s, including Star Trek: The Original Series and I Dream of Jeannie.
Former leading lady Jones (Invasion of the Body Snatchers), died of cancer in 1983, at 54. Jones worked frequently in TV following the show and even dabbled in early superhero stories with roles on Batman and Wonder Woman.
Former child actor Jackie Coogan (The Kid), who played Uncle Fester, died of a heart attack in 1984, at 69. Coogan's career stretched for decades before The Addams Family, and he continued to work on shows like Hawaii Five-O and The Brady Bunch after it ended.
Weatherwax died in 2014 died at the age of 59 of a heart attack, having moved away from acting after only working on The Addams Family and a reunion film that was shot a decade after the show ended.
Felix Silla, who played Cousin Itt on the show, died in 2021 from pancreatic cancer. In addition Cousin Itt, Silla played one of the Ewoks in Return of the Jedi.
Is there an Addams Family curse at work here? "I hope not," says the original Gomez, 61-year-old John Astin. "I'm feeling fine."
Astin kept busy for decades in the aftermath of The Addams Family, doing guest spots on dozens of TV series (Night Court, Webster, The Facts of Life), and making occasional forays onto the stage and the big screen (Freaky Friday, National Lampoon's European Vacation). He was also frequent tabloid fodder from 1973 to 1985, when he was married to TV star Patty Duke. He married Valerie Ann Sandobal in 1989, and the two have lived in Baltimore ever since.
Lisa Loring, who played Wednesday, has kept busy too: She married and had a baby at 16, divorced at 17, and made a TV comeback at 22 as the "troubled teen" Cricket Montgomery on As the World Turns. She's been married and divorced three times since, but has not worked much as an actress since the 1980s.
Although a reunion may be unlikely at this point the original Addams Family continues to cast a long shadow. Two films were made based on the series in the 1990s, and there's also Wednesday, an upcoming Netflix series focused on Wednesday Addams that was directed by Tim Burton.