Jerry Mathers and Hugh Beaumont acted together before they starred in ''Leave It to Beaver''

Before he was The Beaver, Jerry Mathers got some acting advice from his future on-screen dad.

While many on-screen families provided some form of reliability for viewers, the Cleavers of Leave It to Beaver created a familial unit that almost felt aspirational. The family's loving atmosphere and desire to help each other whenever possible made the Cleaver family a group that audiences would remember years after the show went off the air. Frequent viewers everywhere would be willing to admit that, at least once or twice, they wished they had a family like The Cleavers.

It turns out that years before they played father and son in Leave It to Beaver, Jerry Mathers, and Hugh Beaumont actually had the opportunity to work together on screen as a totally different duo, proving that they were destined to be on screen together long before Leave It to Beaver came together.

According to Jerry Mathers' autobiography, And Jerry Mathers As The Beaver, Mathers played an orphan in the same production where Beaumont was playing the orphanage's minister. In addition to getting acquainted with one another, Beaumont was also able to offer a young Mathers some acting advice when he was instructed to cry during a scene.

Mathers wrote, "Hugh Beaumont came up to me and asked, 'Do you know how to cry?' and I said that I didn't know how... he said, 'You don't have to cry. All you have to do is cover your eyes and mouth and laugh. When people hear you laughing and you cover your eyes and mouth, they're going to think you are crying.'" Mathers said that Beaumont explained, "Just try it and the director will say it's fine."

According to Mathers, the trick worked like a charm, and it left Mathers with a warm memory of Beaumont that lasted all the way through auditions for Leave It to Beaver. Mathers wrote, "When I saw Hugh interviewing for the part of Ward Cleaver, I had a real affection for him because I had worked with him before."

He continued, "I read with about eight or ten prospective fathers, but when I went home that night I prayed like crazy that Hugh Beaumont would get the part and he did." Mathers called the selection of Beaumont a "stroke of pure genius."

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9 Comments

Bapa1 6 months ago
Mathers: "Well, what if I can't cry?" Beaumont: "I'll give you something to cry about!" Mathers: "Gee!"
LoveMETV22 Bapa1 6 months ago
The funny phrase that never made sense was :
" Stop crying or I'll give you something to cry about."
(Which was frustration or lack of control on the parent or adults part.)
Why would one stop crying only to start crying again ?
dominicanbride1 6 months ago
Love this show still watching it before work. A great family that shows positive family values.
LoveMETV22 6 months ago

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That was a good article. It's nice to hear Jerry Mathers and Hugh Beaumont had a good working relationship as well as friendship.
Pacificsun LoveMETV22 6 months ago
Good Morning!
Did he ever cry in any episode?
LoveMETV22 Pacificsun 6 months ago
I'm sure there are a few episodes he may have been upset for w/e reason(s). Not sure if he actually cried though.
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