In a critically acclaimed book,
Dick York, the original Darrin of Bewitched, reveals intimate
details about his hardscrabble childhood, his rise to fame, and his
shocking fall from sitcom stardom.
ELIZABETH, NJ, June 2005 -- Bewitched
is back — and so is the brilliant, original Darrin.
The first season of the 60s sitcom is being
released on DVD this month, and a Bewitched movie starring
Will Ferrell as Darrin is scheduled to open June 24. Meanwhile, the
original Darrin, Dick York, who died in 1992, is earning raves for his
posthumously published memoir, The Seesaw Girl and Me.
A little TV history here: In the 1968-69 TV
season, York vanished from Bewitched. The next season,
without any explanation, a new Darrin was kissing Samantha. The Darrin
switch has since become a pop-culture milestone.
But what happened to York?
According to his memoir, The
Seesaw Girl and Me, he was battling physical collapse and an
addiction to prescription pills, spiraling into poverty, gaining and
losing 150 pounds, and hanging on to hopes for a showbiz comeback.
As the book reveals,
despite these trials York kept his sense of humor, his idealism and the
love of his life, Joan “Joey” York, the seesaw girl of the title.
"We had many tough times
in our life — a lot of ups, a lot of downs," Mrs. York notes in the
book's foreword. "But Dick and I managed to be together and smile
through all of them."
The book includes
colorful details about York’s hardscrabble childhood in Depression-era
Chicago, his rise to radio, Broadway, movie and television fame
alongside actors such as Spencer Tracy, Gene Kelly, Gary Cooper and
Elizabeth Montgomery, and his post-Bewitched struggles to
regain his health and restart his career.
Stricken with emphysema
in 1986, York devoted his final years to a campaign to help the
homeless. He died in 1992.
Written in the late 80s,
York's long-awaited book is now available from New Path Press (http://www.newpathpress.com).
Reviewers have termed it "funny and lyrical," "uplifting and
remarkable," "unusual and inspiring" and "bittersweet."
"Dick tells his poignant
story with candor, passion and optimism," said New Path Press president
Claudia Kuehl. "Any reader who has experienced sudden misfortune or
disappointment — and who hasn’t? — can tap into his strength and hope."
Publication of the book
coincides with Bewitched’s fortieth anniversary year and
the rise of interest in all things Bewitched.
The 256-page hardcover
retails for $25.95 and includes 41 black and white photos. It is
available from the online booksellers Amazon.com and Alibris.com and
directly from the publisher.
In honor of York, a portion of any profits will
be donated to several charities, Kuehl said.
New Path Press is an independent publishing company founded in 2003.
For more information contact Claudia Kuehl at
New Path Press
17 Park Street
Manchester, Connecticut 06040
Telephone: (860) 878-7754