Anthony "Tony" Lee Dow (born April 13, 1945 in Hollywood, California), is an American film producer, director and TV child actor of the 1950s and 1960s.
Dow is best known for his role in the 1950s television sitcom Leave it to Beaver, in which he played Wallace "Wally" Cleaver, the older son of June and Ward Cleaver (Barbara Billingsley and Hugh Beaumont), and the brother of Theodore "Beaver" Cleaver (Jerry Mathers).
Early life and career
Dow was born to John Stevens, a designer and general contractor, and Muriel Virginia Dow (nee Montrose), a stunt woman in early westerns and Clara Bow's movie double in Hollywood, California. In his youth, Dow was a Junior Olympics diving champion. Tony Dow won the role of Wally Cleaver in a casting call with almost no previous acting experience.
Dow remained on the series until it ended in 1963. After the run of Leave It to Beaver, Dow appeared on My Three Sons, Dr. Kildare, Mr. Novak, and Never Too Young. In 1965, Dow briefly stopped acting and joined the National Guard. Dow left the National Guard in 1968 and returned to acting with guest starring roles in Adam-12, Love, American Style, The Mod Squad, The Hardy Boys, and Emergency!.
During the 1970s, Dow continued acting while working in the construction business and studying journalism and filmmaking.
Dow's most recent onscreen appearance was in the 2003 film Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star.
Behind the camera
In 1986, he wrote an episode of The New Leave It to Beaver
, and in 1989, he made his directorial debut with an episode of The New Lassie
, followed by episodes of Get a Life
, Harry and the Hendersons
, Swamp Thing
, Babylon 5
, and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
Dow also served as the Visual effects supervisor for Babylon 5. In 1996, he provided visual effects for the FOX TVM Doctor Who.
In June 1969, Dow married Carol M. Marlow. In 1973, they had one son, Christopher T. Dow, before divorcing in 1978.
Dow is currently married to Lauren Shulkind, whom he wed in 1980. The couple has one child together.
In the 1990s, Dow revealed that he has struggled and was eventually diagnosed with, Bipolar disorder. He has since starred in self-help videos chronicling his battle with the disorder.
- NBC Children's Theatre (1 episode, Undated)
- Leave It to Beaver (234 episodes, 1957-1963)
- Dr. Kildare (1 episode, 1963)
- The Greatest Show on Earth (1 episode, 1964)
- My Three Sons (1 episode, 1964)
- Mr. Novak (5 episodes, 1963-1965)
- Never Too Young (Unknown episodes, 1965)
- Adam-12 (1 episode, 1970)
- Love, American Style (1 episode, 1971)
- The Mod Squad (1 episode, 1971)
- Emergency! (1 episode, 1972)
- A Great American Tragedy (1972)
- Death Scream (1975)
- General Hospital (Unknown episodes, 1975)
- The Kentucky Fried Movie (1977)
- The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries (1 episode, 1977)
- The Ordeal of Bill Carney (1981)
- Square Pegs (2 episodes, 1982)
- Still the Beaver (1983)
- Quincy M.E. (1 episode, 1983)
- Knight Rider (1 episode, 1983)
- High School U.S.A. (1983)
- Murder, She Wrote (1 episode, 1987)
- Back to the Beach (1987)
- The New Leave It to Beaver aka Still the Beaver (1985-1989)
- Charles in Charge (1 episode, 1989)
- Freddy's Nightmares aka Freddy's Nightmares: A Nightmare on Elm Street The Series (2 episodes, 1990)
- The Adventures of Captain Zoom in Outer Space (1995)
- Playing Patti (1998)
- Beyond Belief: Fact or Fiction (1 episode, 1998)
- Diagnosis: Murder (2 episodes, 1999)
- Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star (2003)