Any individual who watched The Dukes of Hazzard right through its run within the early ’80s will understand that the lead characters had been Bo and Luke Duke, performed by means of John Schneider and Tom Wopat. And whilst the sequence was once focused at the two Southern cousins and their adventures, there was once one season of The Dukes of Hazzard that hardly featured them. All through Season 5, Schneider and Wopat had been changed by means of two new actors because of a feud between the 2 stars and the display’s manufacturing corporate, Warners Bros. Learn on to determine what came about and to be told how the brand new actors’ large destroy briefly got here to an finish.
As reported by means of Folks in August 1982, stars Wopat and Schneider sued Warner Bros. for $25 million, claiming they were not given their fair proportion of royalty cash produced from the sale of Dukes of Hazzard products, equivalent to toys and clothes. The swimsuit was once filed previous to the beginning of filming for the display’s 5th season.
“The Duke boys would not stand for being cheated and neither can we,” the actors mentioned in a observation. “Now we have realized that for the previous two years Warner Bros., has deceived and defrauded us. We hate to depart the display, however we really feel we can not proceed to paintings for a corporation which, in our opinion, has cheated no longer simplest us however all our fellow actors.”
In response to Schneider and Wopat’s lawsuit, Warner Bros. countersued for $90 million, claiming libel and breach of contract, consistent with Folks. The manufacturing corporate reportedly claimed that the actors had been in fact looking to get out in their contracts.
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The Dukes of Hazzard did not rent new actors to play the characters of Luke and Bo, however they did upload new roles that had been supposed as replacements. Luke and Bo had been changed by means of cousins Coy and Vance, who confirmed up on the town whilst Luke and Bo had been away touring round for NASCAR races. Coy and Vance had the similar traits and storylines as Luke and Bo, so whilst the nature names were not the similar, the display may try to elevate on as standard.
Coy was once performed by means of Byron Cherry and Vance by means of Christopher Mayer. The actors spoke to Folks in 1982 and had been excited for his or her new roles—on the time, Mayer was once unemployed and Cherry was once operating as a bartender. “Simplest on this industry are you able to be an in a single day famous person,” Mayer mentioned.
Sadly for Cherry and Mayer, their time on The Dukes of Hazzard was once beautiful short-lived. In keeping with a December 1982 article from UPI, the court cases from Wopat, Schneider, and Warner Bros. had been dropped, and Wopat and Schneider agreed to go back to the display.
“We’re particularly glad to be returning to our circle of relatives at the display, whom now we have neglected very a lot,” the actors mentioned in a observation. “Now we have just right emotions about our go back and welcome the chance to place the previous misunderstandings in the back of us.”
Schneider and Wopat returned for a couple of episode on the finish of Season Five after which endured on for Seasons 6 and seven. As for Mayer and Cherry, their time on The Dukes of Hazzard got here to a detailed when the unique stars returned.