‘Dukes of Hazzard’ Actor John Schneider Revealed Why Reunion Specials Were Treated as ‘Second Rate TV Movies’

by Chris Haney
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Last year, Dukes of Hazzard star John Schneider opened up about why the two reunion specials of the hit show were “second rate.”

Schneider shared a video to his YouTube channel in May 2020 where he answered his fans’ questions. During the casual Q&A session, one fan asked about the quality of the two reunion specials. Unfortunately, they weren’t quite up to par compared to the Dukes of Hazzard television series.

The original The Dukes of Hazzard show is considered an all-time classic. From 1979 to 1985, Schneider’s character Bo Duke and his brother Luke Duke (Tom Wopat) continuously ran from the law in their famous “General Lee” Dodge Charger. The show consistently ranked among the top-rated television series of its era. However, interest had dwindled a dozen years later when they filmed a couple of reunion specials.

1997’s The Dukes of Hazzard: Reunion! and 2000’s The Dukes of Hazzard: Hazzard in Hollywood definitely had their flaws. But the pair of made-for-TV movies simply didn’t have the big budget they were used to. Additionally, the studio treated the projects as an afterthought.

“It was great fun. But I think because we didn’t have a house, we didn’t have the farm, they just shoveled us off somewhere like any second rate TV movie on the back lot. We were really not shown – the franchise of Dukes of Hazzard – was not shown any love with regard to production value on either one of those movies.”

“We, again, policed our own integrity and the quality of the characters we were playing because we know that we’re part of your family. I think that [the two TV specials] were watchable,” Schneider added. “I think if anyone else had done them, they would not have been watchable.”

‘Dukes of Hazzard’ Still Resonates With Fans Decades Later

In May, Dukes of Hazzard actor John Schneider revealed why he thinks the hit show still has a lasting impact on fans even years later. It’s been 35 years since the show went off the air. Yet old fans and new fans alike continue to recognize the 61-year-old and show their appreciation for his work.

“Oh yeah! It’s a wonderful compliment,” Schneider said to Closer Weekly. “A new generation of kids is now watching Dukes and loving it. It’s terrific. I just did a concert in North Carolina, and there were people from ages 6 to 80 in the crowd. They all love the show.”

Schneider was only 18 years old when he first starred in Dukes of Hazzard. Since then, millions of fans have grown up with the show. The actor says the action-packed television show became part of fans’ “extended family.”

“We became and remain a part of people’s extended family,” he explained. “For a lot of folks, it’s not just a television show. It’s the lessons they learned from it or the time they spent watching episodes with their grandparents who have now passed on. We’re people they spent time with during a very important time in their lives. It’s a special show, and I’m honored to be a part of that.”

Outsider.com