HomeEntertainment‘Family Affair’: Version in France Changed Characters Names, Including Mr. French

‘Family Affair’: Version in France Changed Characters Names, Including Mr. French

by Charles Craighill
(Photo by CBS Photo Archive/Getty Images)

If you watched the classic television show Family Affair, you likely knew Mr. French, Buffy, Cissy, and Jody. However, you might have known them by different names had you grown up in France. That’s right, a French version of the show, dubbed Cher oncle Bill, aired in France with completely different names.

In the French version of Family Affair, Mr. French appropriately changed his name to Mr. Felix as it would be inappropriate to have a French character named Mr. French. Similarly, Buffy’s name changed to FanFan, Cissy’s name changed to Cecile, and Jody’s name became Jackie. However, Uncle Bill not only kept his name, but his character also took the title of the French show.

Family Affair Takes Place in The Same Fictional Universe as Other Shows

While Family Affair did have a spinoff that took place in France, the original show shared a fictional universe with several other classic television series. The sitcoms My Three Sons and From Rome With Love both shared the plotline of a single father raising three kids. In fact, some of the shows even shared some crossover episodes in an attempt to revive one of the struggling shows, From Rome With Love. However, Family Affair and My Three Sons never had any crossover episodes.

The reason for the similarities between these three shows? They all shared the same creators, Edmund L Hartmann and Don Fedderson. The two first created Family Affair in 1966, leading it to a successful run up until 1971. The two teamed up again for My Three Sons and found similar success as the show ran for 12 seasons and ranked among the nation’s top 20 shows for over half of them.

The team did not, however, see the same kind of popularity with their third show, From Rome With Love. While the production team was the same as Family Affair and My Three Sons, the show only lasted a couple of seasons. Even with the crossover episodes, the show failed.