One day at a tiiiiiiime! Come on, you know you still hum that catchy theme song regularly. One Day at a Time, starring Bonnie Franklin, was a major hit in the late ’70s and early ’80s. The sitcom centered around a newly divorced mom trying to raise her two teen daughters on her own and as a result was rather groundbreaking for its time. Sadly, however, its beloved star is no longer with us, nor is everyone’s favorite building super, Schneider (Pat Harrington). But what happened to the rest of the wacky cast? We take a look at the many lovable characters from this old TV hit and find out what they’re up to a full three decades after the show ended.
10. Mackenzie Phillips (Julie Cooper)
Mackenzie Phillips played Julie Cooper, the boy-crazy teen daughter of Ann Romano in One Day at a Time. Sadly, though, Phillips had battled a serious drug problem from a very young age, and in 1980 the troubled actress was duly axed from the show due to her erratic behavior.
In 2009, meanwhile, Phillips went on to reveal yet another disturbing secret on Oprah: that she’d had a decade-long sexual relationship with her musician father, John Phillips of The Mamas and the Papas. Since her untimely exit from One Day at a Time, then, Phillips has still worked occasionally as an actress. However, today she also spends a good deal of her time serving as a counselor in a Hollywood rehab center.
9. Richard Masur (David Kane)
Richard Masur featured in pretty much every popular ’70s show there was – everything from The Waltons to M*A*S*H to Hawaii Five-0. But undoubtedly one of his most enduring roles has been as David Kane in One Day at a Time.
Still, since Masur’s days as Ann’s divorce-lawyer-turned-boyfriend, he’s more than kept himself busy. At present, for example, you can catch him starring as Buzz in the hit Amazon show Transparent. He’s also a board member of the Motion Picture & Television Fund.
8. Valerie Bertinelli (Barbara Cooper)
In One Day at a Time, Valerie Bertinelli played Barbara, the other daughter of Ann Romano. Barbara was the opposite of rebellious Julie, however – she was the dependable, wise-cracking kid of the family. And for her efforts, the talented Bertinelli won a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress.
And there’s been a few changes for Bertinelli since the show came to an end, not least in her personal life: in 2007 she divorced her rock star husband Eddie Van Halen and is now married to financial planner Tom Vitale. Meanwhile, she has continued to act, most recently starring in Hot in Cleveland. Plus, her memoir became a New York Times bestseller.
7. Mary Louise Wilson (Ginny Wroblicki)
Mary Louise Wilson played Ann’s wacky, lovable neighbor Ginny Wrobliki in One Day at a Time. And rumor has it that Wrobliki was such a hit with viewers that her jealous co-star Bonnie Franklin had her character written out of the show.
Still, regardless of the truth to that rumor, it hasn’t harmed Wilson’s career much, as she went on to become a Tony- and Drama Desk Award-winning actress. And at the age of 85, she’s still at it, having recently appeared in Orange is the New Black.
6. Michael Lembeck (Max Horvath)
Michael Lembeck was known in the show as Julie’s hunky husband, Max Horvath. Hovath was an airline pilot – and those absences came in handy, as Lembeck actually had to be written out of One Day at a Time twice due to substance abuse.
After the end of the show, however, Lembeck actually ended up making a bigger name for himself as a director than an actor. In fact, he picked up two Emmys for his work on Friends and Mad About You. He also went on to wed Lorna Patterson, who you may remember as the singing stewardess from Airplane!.
5. Ron Rifkin (Nick Handris)
As Nick Handris, Ron Rifkin held the honor of playing Ann’s first boyfriend post-David. His son in the show was played by Glenn Scarpelli, and Glenn too became a regular.
Since One Day At A Time, meanwhile, Rifkin has had a long and busy TV and film career. His illustrious resume contains the likes of LA Confidential, Brothers and Sisters and Alias, for example, as well as most recently a recurring role as Father Creal in Gotham.
4. Glenn Scarpelli (Alex Handris)
Glenn Scarpelli was considered quite the heartthrob back in the day. He played Alex, the son of Ann’s new boyfriend, and brought a new, more masculine vibe to the show after he moved in with Ann and her daughters.
When Scarpelli appeared on VH1’s Top 100 Teen Stars back in 2006, however, he surprised fans with the announcement that he’s gay. He later married his longtime partner, though they divorced in 2012. And now he owns his own television station in Sedona, Arizona.
3. Boyd Gaines (Mark Royer)
In One Day at a Time, Boyd Gaines played the love interest and eventual husband of Barbara. His character Mark was a staid dentist, best known for his stick-in-the-mud demeanor.
Since the end of the show, then, Gaines has appeared in Law and Order – but his real success has been on the stage. Indeed, in 2008 the Broadway veteran even won a Tony for his work in Gypsy. His most recent performance on screen, meanwhile, came in an episode of short-lived NBC series American Odyssey.
2. Shelley Fabares (Francine Webster)
Shelly Fabares was a total scene-stealer, who occasionally popped up in episodes as as Ann’s rival co-worker, Francine Webster. And, eventually, Francine became a series regular.
Along with One Day at a Time, meanwhile, Fabares is probably most recognizable for her work in the show Coach. Unfortunately, in 1994 the actress’ promising career was curtailed somewhat when she suffered a horrific fall. And as a result, she was left with fractured ribs and had to undergo a liver transplant. Today, then, Fabares lives a much quieter life out of the spotlight. Although she did use to date Elvis, and so she has plenty of fond memories to look back on…
1. Nanette Fabray (Katherine Romano)
Nanette Fabray was a force to be reckoned with when she played Ann’s mother, Grandma Katherine Romano in One Day at a Time. And, interestingly, Fabray also happens to be the real-life aunt of Shelley Fabares.
Fabray has since gone on to have a successful stage career as a musical theater actress, picking up a Tony Award in the process. Her last time treading the boards, however, was in 1997, when she appeared in the Broadway play The Bermuda Love Triangle. Still, given she’s now 96 years old, it’s hard not to blame her for wanting to retire quietly…