This is why Susan Olsen skipped the Brady Christmas movie
When her TV family was getting back together for the holidays, she was in Jamaica on her honeymoon.
When Susan Olsen didn’t show up for A Very Brady Christmas in 1988, a rumor began circulating that the former child star was dead.
Olsen heard a lot of rumors after she disappeared from the spotlight, none of them true, but the death rumor was hard to shake.
Instead of loudly disproving the rumor, though, the Cindy Brady actor stayed silent, not speaking up about her absence from the reunion TV movie until 1993.
When Olsen did finally set the record straight, it turned out that she missed the reunion because she would have had to cancel her honeymoon to do it, and producers wouldn’t agree to pay her what she wanted.
"It came down to money and bad politics," Olsen told The Age in 1993. "I was asking for way less than the two other girls wanted, but they still wouldn’t give it to me."
Her TV sisters Eve Plumb and Maureen McCormick came to Olsen’s defense, but their support didn’t matter to the studio. Instead, the decision was made to replace Olsen, and a hunt for a lookalike began.
"My agent rang me to say there’s a casting call looking for a Susan Olsen look-alike," Olsen said.
For Olsen, it was like that Bob Marley song goes only for Olsen, it was "No Cindy, No Cry."
"I was in Jamaica at the Bob Marley Performance Centre listening to a great reggae band," Olsen said.
The reason she was in Jamaica was because she’d already planned her honeymoon. It meant a lot to her to celebrate her wedding, and she said she didn’t want to cancel because, "I really had my heart set on it."
After Olsen got married, her husband helped her recover after Olsen struggled to get call-backs, feeling she was too typecast as Cindy Brady to be seen for any other role.
"You should do art," her husband said, and Olsen got a job screen-printing T-shirts at a shop where customers occasionally would head into the back area just to meet her.
That career didn’t work out, and neither did her first marriage.
Although Olsen never regretted not doing A Very Brady Christmas, she did return to play Cindy in The Bradys spin-off show in 1990.
"The Brady Bunch was like a second family," Olsen said. "There was a lot of love from all around."