An entire post on the life and times of Wesley Eure? Sure! Of all the celebrities who have come and go over the years, Wesley Eure of "Land of the Lost" may be one of the most fascinating. I mentioned in my last "whatever happened to?" post that he was the co-creator of "Dragon Tales", but it goes beyond that. Let's take a look.
He big break came when Robert Goulet discovered him selling velvet paintings in Vegas. Goulet offered him the opportunity to perform on his tour.
Later, he almost became David Cassidy's replacement on "The Partridge Family", but the show was cancelled. He moved on to the amazing "Land of the Lost" for a few seasons. On LOTL his name appears in the credits as simply "Wesley", whereas the rest of the cast had their full name spelled out. This has become a source of embarrassment over the years for Eure.
His proceeding attempts in the cinema were rather interesting. In a bizarre career change, Eure starred in one of the more gritty horror movies to come out of the 70's, The Toolbox Murders. The film was directed by Tobe Hooper fresh off the heals of his Texas Chainsaw Massacre. I wanted to put the film trailer on here, but it was so brutal and gruesome that I think I'll include the TV trailer instead (at the bottom of this post). I'd like to keep retrospace at least PG-13. I've seen the film, and it's not great cinema, but it has worth simply for being as dark and nihilistic a film as you're gonna get. Henry: A Portrait of a Serial Killer seems upbeat compared to this. What a shift from "Land of the Lost"!
Anyway, in 1979, Eure starred alongside Valerie Bertinelli and Conrad Baine ("Diff'rent Strokes") in C.H.O.M.P.S. and made numerous appearances on "The Match Game" in the latter part of the decade. He also hosted a game show on Nickelodeon.
Eure's big success came with the publication of The Red Wings of Christmas. The story has been optioned by Disney and has been a big seller, but here's the truly awesome part... it's illustrated by Ron Pallilo (Horshack from "Welcome Back, Kotter")! Arnold Horshack's illustration is included below.
Okay, now Eure's success gets even more startling. It turns out that the show my children have been enjoying for years, "Dragon Tales" was co-created by Eure. The show has been a huge success, receiving millions of dollars from the federal government, and winning numerous awards. The profits have allowed Eure to take up residence in Palm Springs and enjoy a little of the high life.
Of course, given Eure's propensity for success in diverse areas, we shouldn't be surprised to learn that he has written other varied books such as On the Wall Off the Wall: The Official Collection of the All Time Best Office Graffiti Snatched from the Walls of Corporate America and is a leading fund raiser for The March of Dimes.
Okay, so let's take stock here: velvet painting artist in Vegas, performer for Robert Goulet's roadshow, almost a Partridge, star of "Land of the Lost", serial killer in a horror movie, game show host and contestant, award winning children's book author, co-creator of a PBS cartoon, and top fundraiser. Sort of makes you feel like you haven't done anything doesn't it?