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ABC ORIGINALS: INSIDE THE OSMONDS (TV)

Summary

This made-for-television production is a dramatization about the highs and lows of show business family The Osmonds over three decades of performing. The program begins with a clip of TV show host Andy Williams introducing the Mormon-raised Osmond brothers in the mid-'60s, performing their trademark harmonies of standard tunes on his show. In Los Angeles of 1970, the Osmond brothers -- Alan, Merrill, Wayne, Jay, and Donny -- try to graduate to rock music, singing "Hold Her Tight" as impressed director Jack Regas watches with the boys' father, George. Jack isn't sure the Osmonds can change their clean-cut image so easily. Alan says rock is the kind of music they want to play. Soon enough, The Osmond Brothers are performing in a night club. As they segue from "Goin Home" to "He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother," fans walk out in droves. George wants his sons to go back on "The Andy Williams Show," thinking rock isn't for them. Then, producer Mike Curb arrives in their dressing room, telling them that they simply performed for the wrong audience. While George hesitates, the boys' mother, Olive, maintains that rock could be their new "mission" in the music world. Mike takes the Osmonds to meet record producer Rick Hall. Immediately, Rick tries to change lead singer Merrill's way of crooning love songs, going for a grittier dynamic. Looking for a tune that can prove successful for the group, George finds the lyrics of many of the songs inappropriate. Soon, the Osmonds are recording the Jackson Five's "One Bad Apple." It becomes the number one song in America. By 1971, The Osmonds are performing songs like "Yo-Yo" to adoring teen crowds, breaking records, despite the critical pans. The crowds particularly relate to young Donny. Olive tells her boys to ignore the negative newspaper reviews. Mike tells George that their album sales are phenomenal. Returning home, the brothers start work on their new album, to be called "The Plan." Rick tries to shake up the group by switching lead singer from Merrill to Donny and forcing them to perform a bubblegum tune, "Sweet and Innocent." The song becomes a big hit, as does Donny. Mike then makes plans for Donny to record a solo album, with the others performing backup. Merrill is particularly angered as he feels that the group's music is taking a whole new direction. George tells Alan that it's his responsibility to hold the brothers together. One day, twenty-year-old Merrill goes to George, saying he wants to get married to his girlfriend, Mary. That night, George and Olive talk about "God's plan" for their sons, noting that they never listened to people's advice when told to stop having children after their first sons, Virl and Tom, were born deaf. By the next day, George gives Merrill his blessing, leading to Merrill and Mary's wedding. Later, youngest son Jimmy begins work on a song, "Long Haired Lover from Liverpool," which Mike assures him will go gold. By 1972, Donny's "Puppy Love" has become a huge hit. One night, while George sleeps, Donny and Jay sneak out to meet with some teen fans, Karen and Roberta. Jay and Donny reveal their religious beliefs about chastity but are soon making out with the girls. However, Jay stops himself when Karen wants to "go all the way." Soon, the Osmonds' popularity has led to the "American icons" receiving death threats from the Symbionese Liberation Army. In 1973, the Osmonds land at London's Heathrow Airport where the teenage girls welcome them warmly at a concert, where they perform "Crazy Horses." The next night, George reports that the record label is pushing for Donny to sing more songs due to his increasing popularity. At the show, Donny is supposed to perform "Down by the Lazy River," on which Merrill has always sung the lead. The group agrees, but Merrill sings it during the show anyway, earning Alan's wrath afterward. Meanwhile, in Nashville, Marie begins work on her first single, "Paper Roses," which goes gold. Soon, Donny's voice begins cracking as he goes through puberty. Marie gets the idea to perform the high parts on "I'm Leaving It All Up to You" while Donny handles the rest. It is a smashing success, though dissension grows amongst the other Osmonds. By 1976, George has learned that ABC wants to tap Donny and Marie for their own variety show. George thinks the other Osmond brothers should be behind-the-scenes creators and producers of the show. Merrill can't believe that Alan wants to return to a variety show. Soon enough, Donny and Marie's show is on the air and they are performing tunes like "A Little Bit Country, a Little Bit Rock 'n Roll." They even land a guest spot from Bob Hope. However, the newspapers again pan the Osmonds' work, especially Donny and Marie's "sickeningly sweet" musical sign-off. Meanwhile, Alan has become a taskmaster on set, requiring perfection on songs like "It Takes Two" as well as skits. After singing "By the Sea" in a crustacean outfit, Wayne becomes disillusioned with his career's direction. He says that his chance at a legitimate recording career has been ruined. One day, Donny voices his concerns to Alan about always playing "the idiot" in comedy skits. That night, Donny stays in the home studio late trying to lay some tracks. Jay comes down to stop him but instead ends up helping out. The next day, Marie is criticized by a network exec for having gained a little weight. Olive begins to wonder why Marie isn't eating and her daughter reveals the reason. That night, Olive and George discuss how their kids are being harassed in Los Angeles. Thus, the Osmonds debate whether they should move back to Utah, with the majority voting to use forty million dollars to build their own studio there. By 1977, the Osmonds are back in Utah with a new state-of-the-art studio and a new song, "Utah." Donny and Marie begin spatting, but continue to perform their variety show skits. One day on set, Donny pulls a practical joke on Marie, forcing her to perform "Paper Roses" while stuck in a magic box. Afterward, Donny apologizes to Marie and she finally talks to him about the pressure she's feeling. Meanwhile, Donny's "Disco Train" album flops, causing him to question who he is. By 1980, Alan reveals to Merrill that the show has been canceled after having "run its course," making him feel that he's failed the family. Soon, the Osmonds finds that the family's eighty million dollar fortune is gone and that all their property is in escrow, a result of the studio's failure and a string of bad investments. George refuses to file Chapter 11 and says that their debts will be repaid. Later, Alan and Wayne discuss having lost out on a normal childhood. The next day, Alan refuses to take the blame as Donny and Jay ask how such bad financial decisions were made. George speaks to his children about their family's "loss," asking for forgiveness. Jimmy comes up with an idea for an Osmond family tour to hopefully recoup some money. The tour gets no advertising and with forty-eight hours until show time, they haven't even sold half the seats for their debut performance. Olive gets all the family members to pitch in and make the event a success. Then, Merrill has some heart problems and collapses, being sent to the hospital. Merrill refuses to let his brothers cancel the tour on his account. On opening night, Marie, Donny, Alan, Jay, Wayne, and Jimmy sing "He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother" in tribute to Merrill. In January of 2001, the Osmonds' touring continues, as the eleven members of the real Osmond family are shown on-stage, again singing "He Ain't Heavy." Graphics reveal how the Osmonds sold their studio, paid off their debts, and achieved more professional and personal victories. Includes commercials.

Details

  • NETWORK: ABC
  • DATE: February 5, 2001 Monday 8:00 PM
  • RUNNING TIME: 1:58:55
  • COLOR/B&W: Color
  • CATALOG ID: T:64111
  • GENRE: Drama
  • SUBJECT HEADING: ; Drama
  • SERIES RUN: ABC - TV, 2001
  • COMMERCIALS:
    • TV - Commercials - "Recess: School's Out" motion picture
    • TV - Commercials - Actonel osteoporosis medication
    • TV - Commercials - America's Beef Producers
    • TV - Commercials - American Symphony Orchestra League
    • TV - Commercials - Applebee's restaurants
    • TV - Commercials - Aquafresh toothbrushes
    • TV - Commercials - Bank of America banking
    • TV - Commercials - Boy Scouts of America
    • TV - Commercials - Burger King restaurants
    • TV - Commercials - California Fluid Milk Processor Board for "Got Milk?"
    • TV - Commercials - California Lottery
    • TV - Commercials - Carnival cruise lines
    • TV - Commercials - Chevron gasoline
    • TV - Commercials - Degree deodorant
    • TV - Commercials - Domino's pizza
    • TV - Commercials - Gateway computers
    • TV - Commercials - Glade scented candles
    • TV - Commercials - Honda automobiles
    • TV - Commercials - KFC restaurants
    • TV - Commercials - MasterCard credit cards
    • TV - Commercials - Maybelline lipstick
    • TV - Commercials - McDonald's restaurants
    • TV - Commercials - Microsoft software
    • TV - Commercials - Nissan automobiles
    • TV - Commercials - Office of National Drug Control Policy and Partnership for a Drug-Free America
    • TV - Commercials - Oldsmobile automobiles
    • TV - Commercials - Pantene hair care
    • TV - Commercials - Pizza Hut restaurants
    • TV - Commercials - ReMax realtors
    • TV - Commercials - Saran Quick Covers
    • TV - Commercials - Sea World amusement parks
    • TV - Commercials - Singulair asthma medication
    • TV - Commercials - Sprint calling plans
    • TV - Commercials - Stouffer's frozen meals
    • TV - Commercials - Thermasilk shampoo
    • TV - Commercials - Toyota automobiles
    • TV - Commercials - Tums PMS calcium supplement
    • TV - Commercials - Tylenol cold medicine
    • TV - Commercials - Vioxx arthritis medication
    • TV - Commercials - Youth for Understanding International Exchange
    • TV - Promos - "Dharma & Greg"
    • TV - Promos - "Doctor Dolittle" (1998)
    • TV - Promos - "Eyewitness News"
    • TV - Promos - "Gideon's Crossing"
    • TV - Promos - "Good Will Hunting"
    • TV - Promos - "Life with Judy Garland: Me and My Shadows"
    • TV - Promos - "NYPD Blue"
    • TV - Promos - "Once and Again"
    • TV - Promos - "Oprah"
    • TV - Promos - "The Drew Carey Show"
    • TV - Promos - "The Mole"
    • TV - Promos - "The Parent Trap" (1998)
    • TV - Promos - "These Old Broads"
    • TV - Promos - "Who Wants to be a Millionaire: Rock Star Edition"

CREDITS

  • Merv Griffin … Executive Producer
  • Mark Sennet … Executive Producer
  • Matt Dorff … Executive Producer, Writer
  • James A. Osmond … Executive Producer
  • Robert M. Sertner … Executive Producer
  • von Zerneck, Frank … Executive Producer
  • Erik Storey … Co-Executive Producer
  • Randy Sutter … Producer
  • Richard Fischoff … Producer
  • Ted Babcock … Co-Producer
  • Peter Sadowski … Co-Producer
  • Neill Fearnley … Director
  • Patrick Williams … Music by
  • Sofia Costantini … Choregrapher
  • Bruce McGill … Cast, George Osmond
  • Veronica Cartwright … Cast, Olive Osmond
  • Patrick Levis … Cast, Donny Osmond
  • Joel Berti … Cast, Alan Osmond
  • Jason Knight … Cast, Wayne Osmond
  • Miklos Perlus … Cast, Jay Osmond
  • Ryan Kirkpatrick … Cast, Merrill Osmond
  • Thomas Dekker … Cast, Young Donny
  • Janaya Stephens … Cast, Marie Osmond
  • Colin Ferguson … Cast, Mike Curb
  • Adrian Hough … Cast, Rick Hall
  • Trevor Blumas … Cast, Jimmy Osmond
  • Taylor Abrahamse … Cast, Younger Jimmy
  • Milton Bruchanski … Cast, Virl Osmond
  • Shane Davidson … Cast, Tom Osmond
  • Barclay Hope … Cast, Jack Regas
  • Kalyn Bomback … Cast, Karen
  • Honoure McIlwain-Collard … Cast, Roberta
  • Taylin Wilson … Cast, Young Marie
  • Robb Patterson … Cast, British Psychologist
  • Mariam Bernstein … Cast, Talk Show Host
  • Neill Fearnley … Cast, Network Executive
  • Chad Bruce … Cast, FBI Agent
  • Darcy Fehr … Cast, Engineer #1
  • Wayne Nicklas … Cast, Family Attorney
  • Alvin Catacutan … Cast, Waiter
  • Tammy Gillis … Cast, Mary
  • George Osmond … Cast, Himself
  • Olive Osmond … Cast, Herself
  • Tom Osmond … Cast, Himself
  • Virl Osmond … Cast, Himself
  • Alan Osmond … Cast, Himself
  • Wayne Osmond … Cast, Himself
  • Jay Osmond … Cast, Himself
  • Merrill Osmond … Cast, Himself
  • Donny Osmond … Cast, Himself
  • Marie Osmond … Cast, Herself
  • Jimmy Osmond … Cast, Himself
  • Bob Hope
  • Andy Williams
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