‘The Waltons’: Mary Ellen Actress Judy Norton Shares Unique Moments With Baby John-Curtis

by Katie Maloney
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How do actors get any work done when there’s an adorable baby on set? Luckily, “The Waltons” cast were true professionals and they were able to interact with the young twins who played John-Curtis while also remembering their lines.

In fact, during an episode of actress Judy Norton’s video series, “Behind The Scenes With Judy Norton,” Norton explains how the toddlers brought new energy to the set.

“I just think it’s so sweet. I always loved to watch the interaction of John-Curtis with the various different family members. Because they’re not acting,” said Norton. “Everything you see from a toddler that age is responding to the actual energy that they are getting from the actors they are working with. So, I think it says a lot about the energy that we all had for real, working with the young twins who played John-Curtis.”

However, Norton added that having a baby on set did bring its fair share of unplanned moments. Nevertheless, “The Waltons” cast was able to flow with the scene to keep the show as authentic as possible.

Baby John-Curtis Brought Some Unplanned Scenes to ‘The Waltons’

“Real things happened in the scenes sometimes, and we just had to work with them,” said Norton.

She pulled up a scene where Mary Ellen is in her apartment putting away books and going through her closet. When she turns around, she sees John-Curtis standing up in his crib. As a concerned actress (and onscreen mom) Judy Norton has to act quickly.

“In this scene, in the apartment, I’m putting things away in the closet. As you can see, John-Curtis in his crib decides to stand up. When I turned around, I can guarantee you that I was surprised to see him standing up in that crib. So my thought was, “Oh my goodness, I don’t want him to try to climb out and fall out,'” said Norton. “So, my reaction is completely, it’s ad-libbed, but it is very much in dealing with my concern for the child.

Norton said that “The Waltons” director kept rolling because her reaction was exactly how a real-life mom would react.

“And they let it happen because it is real-life,” said Norton. “So, I’ve been asked about how much of things happening did they keep or what was an accident and would they let that happen. This, they just let it roll because it was a natural parent reaction to a child being in potential harm.”

Judy Norton talks about working with the baby twins who played John-Curtis on “The Waltons”
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