The Facts of Life served as a spinoff to the popular series Diff’rent Strokes. The show’s plot featured an all-girls boarding school in upstate New York. It produced future stars and had many guest stars. During the 1980s, Facts of Life played a big role in American homes and television. Teens sat down to watch the show every week. But what happened to the cast of The Facts of Life?
The show ended more than 30 years ago. But it remains a fan-favorite. You can still catch reruns and bring back memories. Some of the celebrities that appeared on the show include Helen Hunt, Jean Smart, Bobby Rydell, Richard Moll, David Spade, Juliette Lewis, Seth Green, Anne Jackson, George Clooney, Mayim Bialik, Molly Picon, and many more.
Let’s see what happened to the cast of The Facts of Life.
Charlotte Rae – Edna Garrett
Charlotte played a role in Diff’rent Strokes and The Facts of Life. For her portrayal of Edna, she received an Emmy nomination in 1982. Charlotte played a part in two Facts of Life television movies, including the reunion in 2001.
Following the end of the show, she did some voice acting. Rae voiced Nanny in 101 Dalmatians: The Series, and Aunt Pristine Figg in Tom and Jerry: The Movie.
In 2015, Charlotte returned to the feature movie world with Ricki and the Flash, alongside Meryl Streep and Kevin Kline. In November of the same year, she released her autobiography, The Facts of My Life.
Fun fact: Rae worked as a singer before acting. She released her first and only solo album in 1955, Songs I Taught My Mother.
In 2009, due to the frequency of pancreatic cancer in her family, she underwent screening. Thankfully, she got diagnosed early and managed to get cancer-free after six months of chemotherapy. She died from natural causes in August 2018, at the age of 92.
John Lawlor – Steven Bradley
John appeared only in the first season. The American actor worked as a VISTA Volunteer trainer in Denver during the late 1960s. In the show, he portrayed Headmaster Steven Bradley.
Following his departure, he guest-starred in many television shows. You can catch him in Barney Miller, The Rockford Files, LA Law, Mr. Belvedere, Knots Landing, Alice, and more. recently, he played the locksmith in Breaking Bad.
During the 1980s, he appeared in movies like S.O.B., Billy Jack Goes to Washington, National Lampoon’s Movie Madness, and more. He also appeared in a TV commercial for Malt-O-Meal hot cereals, playing a father telling his son the popular catchphrase, “Good stuff Maynard”.
Lisa Whelchel – Blair Warner
Lisa is an American actress, singer, songwriter, and author. And of course, a public speaker. Lisa is among the cast members that got her start in The New Mickey Mouse Club. During the show, she played the wealthy Blair Warner for nine years.
During her time on the show, she also did some music work. In 1984, she got a Grammy nomination for her contemporary Christian album, All Because of You.
Since 2009, she works as a regular speaker with Women of Faith Christian conferences. She did reprise her role in the 2001 movie reunion. And in March 2004, she and Charlotte Rae performed the Facts of Life theme song at the 2nd annual TV Land Awards.
Recently, she turned her attention to writing. She wrote ten books on motherhood, child discipline, homeschooling, and finding Jesus through holiday traditions.
Felice Schachter – Nancy Olsen
Felice had a main role in the first season, and then a recurring in season 2 and 3. She started her career shortly before The Facts of Life. Felice got her debut on the 1976 mini-series, The Adams Chronicles.
Felice guest-starred in Facts of Life until she quit acting. She wanted to pursue an education at Brown University. She only had one movie appearance, in 1982 in the movie Zapped!
After she got back to school, she worked as a radio anchor and then a sports broadcaster for CBS Sports. In the 1990s, she started her production career behind the camera. Some of her projects include Uncle Sam, Magic Island, After the Game, The Citizen, Waiting for the Monkeys, Waste Land, and many more.
Julie Piekarski – Sue Ann Weaver
To this date, The Facts of Life serves as her most prominent role. Same as some other cast members, she got her big break in The New Mickey Mouse Club in 1977. After that, she got cast as a member of The Facts of Life.
When the network retooled the show, they let go of Julie and some other original cast members. Over the next couple of years, she appeared as a guest cast member.
Following her departure, she appeared in TV shows like General Hospital, Quincy, M.E., and Three’s Company.
In 2008, the TV Land Awards nominated her for “Favorite Character Who Went Missing”.
Kim Fields – Tootie Ramsey
Before The Facts of Life, Kim appeared in the short-lived sitcom, Baby I’m Back. She then appeared in a television commercial for Mrs. Butterworth’s syrup.
She played the role of Dorothy, Tootie Ramsey from 1979 to 1988. Decades later, fans still remember her catchphrase, “We’re in trouuuble”.
Fun fact: during the first season, producers put her on roller skates because of her height. They wanted to avoid difficult camera angles.
After the show ended, she took some time away to attend Pepperdine University. And then in 1993, she appeared in an episode of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. In the episode, Will Smith pretended to marry her in an attempt to seduce her.
From 1993 to 1998, she had a main role in Living Single. And after the cancelation of that show, she performed rap and R&B music with the group Impromp 2. Then, she used her degree from Pepperdine University to start a directing career.
Nacy McKeon – Jo Polniaczek
The American actress has two successful sitcoms on her resume. The first one is The Facts of Live. After that, she starred in The Division.
During her time on the show, she attended school with on-set tutors. Following the end of the show, she tried other iconic roles. Fun fact: she and Courtney Cox auditioned for the role of Monica on Friends. We know how that turned out.
In 1999, she wrote and directed her short movie, A Wakening. Directing always served as a personal ambition for her.
Mindy Cohn – Natalie Green
Mindy is an American actress and voice actress. Fans recognize her either by her time on The Facts of Life or by her time on Scooby-Doo. Mindy voiced Velma Dinkley in the Scooby-Doo franchise from 2002 to 2015.
Charlotte Rae lobbied for her to get the part in Facts of Life. And that is because Mindy reminded her of her best childhood friend, Natalie. The two remained friends ever since.
Following the end of the show, she joined the Scooby-Doo franchise. She also appeared in a couple of shows like Charles in Charge, 21 Jump Street, The Help, Hot in Cleveland, and more.