‘The Partridge Family’: David Cassidy Described His Potential Replacements as Having ‘the Least Amount of Talent’

by Joe Rutland
(Photo by Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images)

After four seasons on “The Partridge Family,” David Cassidy was on his way out the door. But who would replace him?

Let’s just say that the people ABC and show executives brought in for tryouts in Cassidy’s role weren’t too good.

“They kept trying to find these new acts to replace me with that were scary as if they sought out the people with the least amount of talent, incredibly bad instinct,” Cassidy, who died in 2017, said in an interview with Yahoo!.

“The Partridge Family” was a big hit show for ABC. Seeing Cassidy, who played Keith Partridge on the show and brought girls’ eyes to the TV screen every week, leave would be devastating to it. Cassidy had a four-year contract negotiated for him by his agent. Because of his massive success on the show and as a solo musician, he felt it was time to leave.

David Cassidy Says ABC Tried To Find Fill-In Actor

Were they trying to find another Keith Partridge, as in someone to simply fill Cassidy’s shoes?

“No, just to play another character: the kid next door, the twins, the nephew of Reuben Kincaid (Dave Madden)… they tried a number of things,” David Cassidy said.

“There was this comedian who was really not funny,” he said. “Still not funny. I think the network took it out of its time slot, put it up against what was the No. 1 show, All in the Family, in its last year (1973-74 season), and put it on Saturday night when young people go out usually, and the show died a death.”

The network didn’t find anyone to fill that void which Cassidy would leave in the popular show. After its fourth season, “The Partridge Family” was canceled by ABC and the show entered into syndication.

Cassidy Received Massive Amounts Of Letters

Before there were email and social media, fans would write letters to their favorite musicians or actors. Imagine being David Cassidy, an international superstar on TV and in music, and how many letters he might have received.

You may not believe this, but Cassidy, at one point, was receiving 30,000 letters per week from fans, a BBC.com article states. That’s pretty rad for the son of actor Jack Cassidy and stepson of Shirley Jones, who played Shirley Partridge on the show.

So, take a step back for a minute. The main forms of communication between David Cassidy and his massive fan base were through letters and concerts. That’s it. Imagine if social media platforms were around in the early 1970s during Cassidy’s heyday with “The Partridge Family.”

That number would be multiplied by a whole lot more. His success, as well his personal problems with alcoholism and addiction, are lessons people can learn from the life of David Cassidy. Yet he’s still beloved for playing Keith Partridge and will be forever.