Willie Aames (Courtesy Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)
Willie Aames (born July 15, 1960) is an American actor, film and television director, television producer, and screenwriter. Aames is well known for playing Tommy Bradford on the 1970s television series Eight Is Enough and Buddy Lembeck on the 1980s series Charles in Charge.
Born Albert William Upton in Newport Beach, California, Aames attended Edison High School in Huntington Beach, California, and was in both the choir and the Madrigal Ensemble.
Aames began acting in the late 1960s as a child actor and appeared in shows such as Gunsmoke,The Wonderful World of Disney,Adam 12, and The Courtship of Eddies Father. In 1971, he originated the role of Leonard Unger, the son of Felix Unger (Tony Randall), on the ABC-TV series The Odd Couple, a part that was later played by Leif Garrett. The following year, he voiced the character of Jamie Boyle in the animated series Wait till Your Father Gets Home. Aames has guest-starred on various television series including The Waltons. In 1974, he portrayed a 12-year old Benjamin Franklin in the miniseries Benjamin Franklin. The next year, he co-starred in the series Swiss Family Robinson.
In 1976, he landed the role of Tommy Bradford in the comedy-drama Eight is Enough. During this period, he played in a band called "Willie Aames & Paradise", where he was lead singer/guitarist. Formed while Aames was in junior high school, the group eventually landed a recording contract with CBS Custom Label. He also appeared in his first movie role in Scavenger Hunt during this time. After the series ended in 1981, Aames appeared in more film roles, including Zapped! opposite Scott Baio, and Paradise with Phoebe Cates.
Before portraying the role of Buddy Lembeck in Charles in Charge in 1984, Aames played the character of Robbie Hamlin on the ABC soap opera The Edge of Night. From 1983 to 1985, he was the voice of Hank on the cartoon Dungeons & Dragons. After the end of Charles in Charge in 1990, Aames hosted the game show The Krypton Factor.
From 1995 to 2004, Aames re-created and starred in a video series, and annual touring performances as the Christian superhero Bibleman. Initially reluctant to take the role. Although Aames directed and wrote the majority of Bibleman series, he does not have any stake in the ownership.
Aames struggled with drug, substance and sexual abuse during the 1970s and early 1980s and it was during this time that he became an ordained minister.
Aames has a son, Christopher. and a daughter, Harleigh Jean. Since 2010, Aames has been working as a Cruise Director for Oceania and Regent Cruises.