Apparently, that iconic Dukes of Hazzard poster that features Daisy holding a handful of wildflowers while donning her namesake shorts was all Catherine Bach’s idea.
That’s right. The studio had other plans for Catherine’s photoshoot the day the poster was created. But just like Daisy Duke, her actress was a bit of a rebel. So she hijacked the shoot and created an image that’s become one of the most popular pieces of memorabilia in television history.
And during a vintage interview, Catherine explained exactly how the poster “came into being.”
As Catherine Bach told her co-stars, Tom Wopat and John Schneider, Warner Bros. studio called one day and told her they wanted her to create a promo poster for the show. And the studio wanted the actress to come in with a very specific look.
“We want you to put on a bikini, oil your body, [and] slick your hair back. And can you paint your nails burgundy?” she remembered them instructing her.
Catherine was completely put off by the image they wanted her to portray. “They wanted me to look like every other girl,” she told the guys.
And furthermore, Catherine thought the whole idea was “disgusting” and had nothing to do with her actual character. So, she told the studio that she was going to do her own thing.
“They said, ‘okay, well you just go do whatever you want, we’re not gonna be a part of it.” she continued.
So Catherine Bach went home and gave her hair a classic Farrah Fawcett look, put on her signature jean shorts, and tied up a flannel crop top. The end result portrayed the true personality of Daisy Duke.
“And that’s how I ended up owning that poster,” she said proudly.
‘Dukes of Hazzard’ Actor Catherine Bach Never ‘Felt Like a Pin-Up’
As the story goes, Warner Bros. really wanted Catherine to pose for a picture that followed the same pinup girl rules that were popular in the 1980s. But Catherine knew the “formula” would fall flat.
“I felt like audiences wanted something else,” she remembered. “They wanted an all-American country girl.”
“[The producers] said, ‘If you’re not doing it our way, we’re not paying for it,’” Bach shared. “I said, ‘No problem, I’ll do it.’ So I took those shorts, a little red and white top I made…. I did my own makeup and got some daisies… A friend of mine shot that poster, front start to finish, in an hour.”
Catherine Bach’s self-made poster sold over 5 million copies. And because it was so popular, it led to a $1 million insurance policy on her legs. So, she really showed them.
And despite the fact that millions of people were literally pinning her poster to their walls, Catherine Bach never did feel like a true pinup model. Instead, she felt empowered.
“I didn’t look at it as being a pinup,” Bach said. “On a personal level, my husband at the time didn’t like me working. So I was going through this hard time emotionally trying to be independent and assertive.”