Donny And Marie Were The “Angelic” Duo Of The 70s, But In The Backstage They Hid Some Really Dark Secrets
The siblings Donny and Marie Osmond were a huge hit of the ’70s and had their own series called Donny & Marie that aired on ABC. The famous series consisted of the two siblings singing and doing remakes of oldies. Everyone who lived in that period surely recalls these American youngest entertainers at the time. At the moment when the show premiered Donny was 18 and Marie 16 years old.
The young duo was awarded for numerous songs, but despite their clean appearance and the image of the “angelic siblings”, Donny and Marie also had a darker side. The smiles in front of the camera were only hiding some deep secrets.
But how did these two gain such a spotlight in the first place? As some of you might already know, Donny started his showbiz career while being still very young, he appeared on television with his brothers at the age of only five under the name The Osmonds. Although his siblings were already quite successful for a while, when Donny joined, something changed and they gained tremendous popularity. The Osmonds appeared on The Andy Williams Show and the Jerry Lewis Show in the ’60s and suddenly, everyone went crazy for this brother band.
The Osmonds decided to transition from barbershop and gospel to bubblegum pop. They wanted to have a cooler image that would fit better with the youth taste of the ’60s. They did a great job and soon the group dominated the charts and had plenty of tours across the U.S.
It was in the early ’70s that Marie Osmond started pursuing a musical career. She was so talented that not only did she perform with her siblings, but she also had an early solo success. But, it seemed that when she came on the stage, there were a little bit too much Osmonds for the entertainment scene. So, the popularity of the Osmonds’ band started decreasing.
However, it turned out that the audience just wanted a slight shift and when Marie and Donny teamed up, they turned out to be a huge success. They released two hot singles in 1974 which boosted additionally their music careers and popularity. Just two years after, the two got their own variety show that quickly became a runaway success. But, no matter how happy and glamorous the two might have looked on screen, the show still caused some trouble to these young teenagers.
Decades after the show aired, Marie decided to tell the whole story about how the entire show looked like to them. She revealed that when she started she received horrible treatment from her producers. As she weighed 103 pounds at the beginning of the show, her producers told her that she was obese, disgusting and a disgrace to her family. They also told her to “keep food out of her fat face”.
The pressure from the producers and the thought that 250 people could lose their jobs if she didn’t lose weight, made Marie deprive herself of food until she weighed 97 pounds. But that wasn’t all, Donny also recalled how their director was such a perfectionist that he didn’t want to consider a lot of wonderful outtakes just because they weren’t perfect enough. He believes that that much perfection ended up taking the soul away from the show.
Although they had pretty busy schedules, Marie was also studying at the time which left her with quite a hectic life at such an early age. The fame they gained while being so young, resulted in the duo co-stars having problems later in life. Donny admitted he is still finding it quite difficult to have a balanced life and dedicate enough time to his family, while Marie had to go through quite tough times. Her son Michael committed suicide, and she also contemplated suicide after the birth of her first son Matthew.
While Donny still recalls a lot of positive moments from the peak of their popularity, it seems the show and the fame around it harmed Marie more than they helped her. In the end, all the fame and glitter don’t really matter if the cost is your inner peace. Or as Marilyn Monroe said “The fame doesn’t fulfill you. It warms you a bit, but that warmth is temporary.”