David Hollander is an American radio
disk jockey, and actor who portrayed
Wesley Sarnac on TV's Call to Glory, and
Little Earl on What's Happening!!
He has also been a music supervisor in
both television and movies, and produced
the Cinemaphonic CD series.
Biographical fast facts
Full or original name at birth: David Jack Hollander
Date and place of birth: August 7, 1969,
Los Angeles, California, U.S.A. *
Family: "My dad is from Poland--he left right
before the war as a child. My mom is from
New York, and her mom is from Tangiers,"
says the ex-child star. His mother worked
as a talent agent, and his father was
employed at the New York Times. David
has one brother, John Hollander, who's a
year older than he.
Error corrections or clarifications
* David Jack Hollander was not born in 1968,
1970, 1971, nor was he born May 16th as
a few sources erroneously report. It is
reported that playwright, director, and
executive producer of TV's The Guardian,
David Hollander, was born May 16th, 1968.
But they're not the same person.
Unfortunately, a few sources have confused
the two, incorrectly ascribing biographical
data, as well as some professional credits.
There are actually several different individuals
by the name of "David Hollander" in the
entertainment/literary fields. The fact
that two of them were born just a year
apart, has led a few sources to confuse
data between them. There's a David Hollander
who's a writer, another who's a writer/producer,
one who worked in Europe for Disney back
in the 1980s, and a former child actor
who has successfully segued into the music
Biography - Credits - Hobbies
By all accounts, David Hollander had a normal
childhood. He was an enthusiastic, well-adjusted
kid who kept his studies up, was in a gifted
student program in school, had a great social
life, and still managed to act. He began by
appearing in numerous commercials, then
quickly moved on to TV guest appearances.
Within a year of his TV acting debut, he
was cast as a series regular on The McLean Stevenson Show.
The show was quickly cancelled, but a string
of made-for-TV movies, guest appearances
on shows such as Kojak, Eight Is Enough, and
Barnaby Jones followed. He occasionally
found work in major motion pictures such
as Coma and Airplane!, but it was his
portrayal of Little Earl on TV's What's Happening!!
and Wesley Sarnac on TV's Call to Glory, for which
most viewers remember him.
His superb comedic timing as a child, ensured
that he would primarily be cast in, and
largely be known for comedy. By the time he
reached his teens, David was demonstrating
genuine talent for drama as well. Brad
Radnitz, one-time President of the Writers
Guild of America and supervising producer-writer
on Call to Glory, said of David, "He could
have a tremendous career as an actor. A
very bright, inquisitive young man, and a
David was never one of those narcissistic
actors who find their work faultless. He
once commented: "I have a lot of trouble
watching myself, and dealing with what I
do. I'm very, very critical of myself."
"Sometimes I just won't watch what I'm in."
His work on Call to Glory and the
"Welcome to My Nightmare" episode of Steven
Spielberg's Amazing Stories, were arguably
his best. They're the performances he
justifiably takes the greatest pride in.
He delivered a number of first-rate dramatic
performances on Call to Glory, with the
assistance of some outstanding writing, and
guidance from an impressive list of
award-winning directors the show attracted.
Asked to comment on his fellow Call to Glory
co-stars, he said, "It was an incredible
cast. It really took on all the characteristics
of a real family. It started from the pilot,
when we would all go out to dinner and
create this kind of family atmosphere." "I
really enjoyed working with Craig (Craig T.
Nelson, who played his father)." "Cindy
(Cindy Pickett, who portrayed his mother)
and Lisa (Elisabeth Shue, who played his
sister) were great. They were like my
mother and sister. I don't have a sister,
and our relationship really took on the
aspects of a brother-sister thing." "Keenan
Wynn (who played his grandfather) was
wonderful." David continued to keep in touch
with both Cindy and Lisa for many years
following the cancellation of the show.
He especially enjoyed the early 1960s
period clothes CTG actors wore during the
series. "It was a time where I was into
really old, funky clothes. I'd help them
buy old clothes, and would bring in stuff
of my own, and say 'Can I wear this?',
and I still wear clothes like that."
While in school, David was a DJ on the
campus radio station. This is where he
first acquired the nickname D.J. Not
only was it apropos for his position, but
D.J. also happened to be the initials
of his first and middle names. He later
became known as Lil' Earl or DJ Lil' Earl,
when music became the focus of his career.
(Lil' Earl was the character he portrayed
on the '70s sitcom What's Happening!!)
David's lifelong love of record collecting
provided the impetus for the next step of
his career. His passion for collecting
vinyl led to the incredible discovery of
a huge cache of unwanted albums for sale.
These were not your ordinary discarded LPs,
but actually an entire collection of
"library music." Sometimes called background
music, incidental film music or production
music, library music consists of musical
scores used extensively in B-movies and
some older TV series. Library music afforded
producers the opportunity to provide a
soundtrack for their shows and films at
a fraction of the cost of hiring a composer,
conductor and musicians. In its heyday,
this prerecorded music was the musical
score heard on many popular shows.
Hollander began compiling some of this
eclectic music for re-release. We're
not talking about boring elevator music,
in fact, some of it was quite innovative.
Much of the original music has been destroyed
over the years by companies who saw no
value in preserving it. David has made
it his mission to try and save this
music from obscurity by assembling, archiving,
and reintroducing library music to the
public. His Cinemaphonic compilations
have received a number of rave reviews,
and have created a small but enthusiastic
group of fans for this relatively obscure
genre of music.
Selected film credits:
Scavenger Hunt (1979)
Meatballs Part II (1984)
Black Dynamite (music supervisor) (2008)
Made-for-television movies -- Pilots -- Miscellaneous TV:
The House at 12 Rose Street
The Winged Colt (1977)
Mom and Dad Can't Hear Me (1978)
The Grass Is Always Greener Over the Septic Tank (1978)
One Last Ride (1980)
To Race the Wind (1980)
A Whale for the Killing (1981)
Just a Little More Love (1983)
Packin' It In (1983)
TV guest appearances:
What Really Happened to the Class of '65?
Eight Is Enough
James at 15
$weepstake$ (a.k.a. Sweepstakes)
Tales of the Unexpected
The Little Rascals a.k.a. The New Little Rascals
Buck Rogers in the 25th Century
Little House on the Prairie
Steven Spielberg's Amazing Stories
The McLean Stevenson Show (1976-77)
What's Happening!! (1978-79)
A New Kind of Family (1979-80)
Lewis & Clark (1981)
Call to Glory (1984-85)
Cinemaphonic: Electro Soul (2000)
Cinemaphonic 2: Soul Punch -- A Selection of British Library Music (2001)
East of Underground: Hell Below (2011)
Photography, golf, collecting
vinyl records, and when he was younger, he
collected various Indian artifacts, such as
Like his Call to Glory co-stars, Craig T. Nelson
and Tom O'Brien, D.J. has enjoyed golfing. It
was actor Scatman Crothers, who worked on
the nearby set of Chico and the Man back
in the '70s, who taught David to golf when
he was just a tyke.
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