‘The Waltons’ Star Eric Scott Explained Why Cast ‘Never Felt the Studio Appreciated Us’

by Joe Rutland

Working long hours in a TV studio and not getting any appreciation ticked off one particular cast member from “The Waltons.”

Eric Scott, who played Ben Walton on the CBS drama, talked about it during a 2017 interview with Closer Weekly.

Scott recalled in the magazine interview that there was “intense pressure” to “be on your spot, say your lines” and “don’t make it difficult.”

But Scott said that he and others on “The Waltons” never received encouragement from the studio.

“It was disappointing that no one even called to say, ‘By the way, thank you,'” Scott said. “We were loved by the public, but we never felt the studio appreciated us.”

“The Waltons” ran on CBS for nine seasons. Scott is one of four actors in the drama who appeared in all of its episodes. The other three are Jon Walmsley, who played Jason Walton; Mary McDonough, who played Erin Walton; and Kami Cotler, who played Elizabeth Walton.

One of the most memorable characters from “The Waltons” is John-Boy Walton, played by Richard Thomas. His desire to become an author and seek greater things than living in the Virginia mountains impressed viewers each week. Thomas first played the role in “The Homecoming: A Christmas Story,” which acted as the pilot for the CBS drama series.

Thomas, though, was no newcomer when it involved acting. He’d been in show business ever since he was 5 years old.

Now Thomas didn’t stop acting after he left “The Waltons.” In fact, he would return to one of his loves, the stage. Thomas was nominated for a Tony Award in 2017 for his role in “The Little Foxes.”

But we’re focused on his TV career for a bit. He won an Emmy Award in 1973 for his John-Boy role. Thomas was nominated for Golden Globe Awards in 1974 and 1975 but did not win.

Yet fans of “Blue Bloods” remember Thomas for an appearance in an eighth-season episode. He played Congressman Richard Walters in “Ghosts of the Past.” Will Estes, who plays Detective Jamie Reagan, worked on a case involving a girls’ reappearance after she disappeared over 10 years earlier. Tom Selleck stars on “Blue Bloods” as NYPD Commissioner Frank Reagan, Jamie’s father.

The main suspect just happened to be Congressman Walters, Thomas’ character. It’s quite a darker character than John-Boy Walton on “The Waltons.” But that’s not new for Thomas when it comes to acting over the past few decades. He’s appeared on “Law & Order” and “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.” Between 2013-16, Thomas played Frank Gaad on the FX series “The Americans.”

Other recent TV series that Thomas appeared on included “The Blacklist,” “NCIS: New Orleans,” and “Billions.”