Marc: Unfortunately, most of them have passed on. Michael Link, that played Earl J. Waggedorn, is one of my Facebook friends. He’s been living in the Philippines over the past couple of decades. It seems to be living a good life!
Diahann Carroll, Michael Link, Marc Copage
DS: What’s good about life in 2019? –
Marc: I have a roof over my head and food in my mouth. My health is good so I certainly have nothing to complain about. However, I still keep telling myself, The best is yet to come!
DS: Thanks for sharing, Marc! Iforcolor is a fan and supporter of your future! Thank you for sharing your experience and talent with the world.
Marc: Thanks so much! Happy to have made a new friend! Cheers!
Born Marc Diego Copage on June 21, 1962, in Los Angeles California, he is the son of John Copage. Marc started out in the entertainment business as a child actor, having been featured on a number one Neilson rated television show which ran for three seasons on a major network. Creating the role of Corey Baker, there are not many people that can say that at one time they co-starred on a show that was the most-watched TV show in the nation!
“As quickly as it had come it was gone. There were no warning signs of what was to come. No explanations. No time to prepare. I just simply did not return to work at the end of our third hiatus. Three years and 86 episodes later “Julia” was canceled. Though the ratings had started to decline, by all accounts we could have continued on for a good couple of more years.”
Julia was the first prime time network television show to feature an independent African American female lead (Diahann Carrol) in the title role. Julia, a half-hour comedy premiering on NBC in September 1968, was an example of American network television’s attempt to address race issues during a period of heightened activism and turmoil over the position of African-Americans in U.S. society. The series was the first to star a Black performer in the leading role since Beulah, Amos ‘n’ Andy, and The Nat “King” Cole Show all left the air in the early and mid-1950s. The series was canceled in 1971.
Marc has been quoted as saying that child stardom forced him to become an adult way too early. His father, a frustrated actor himself, would write speeches for him, go over his line readings, tell him how to react in certain situations.
John Copage and Marc Copage
“I can’t fault my father for having done that, but on the other hand, it maybe is more pressure than a 7- or 8-year old needs then,” says Mr. Copage, now living in Arcadia, California.
“I guess they should just be a kid, and not worry about a speech that they need to say to an audience.” [On having Diahann Carroll for a surrogate mother]: “Having grown up without a real-life mother, Ms. Carroll filled that void.”
Marc was a charming five-year-old when his father, John, an actor turned L.A., real estate investor, took him to the Julia casting call in 1968. He won out over 60 competitors, Copage took home the $450-a-week role of Corey Baker, son of a working, middle-class nurse played by Carroll. “He was so lovable; he had the most infectious smile,” recalls Carroll, who still sees Copage occasionally.
Photo Shoot In The Backyard Of Ms. Carrolls Beverly Hills Home.
ARCHIVIST, HISTORIAN, and ARTiST
Dale Shields is a professor of theatre, director, and actor (Broadway, Off-Broadway, Off-Off-Broadway, and Regional).
The 2017 winner of The Kennedy Center/Stephen Sondheim Inspirational Teacher Award®, 2017 and 2015 Tony® award nominee for the Excellence in Theatre Education Award, and the winner of the 2017 AUDELCO/"VIV" Special Achievement Award. On the web, he is the archivist and historian of Iforcolor.org and Black Theatre/African American Voices [Facebook] (theatre, music, and art). He has taught classes and workshops at SUNY Potsdam, Susquehanna University, Denison University, Randolph-Macon College, Macalester College, The College of Wooster, Ohio University, Wayne State University, and the Joseph Papp Public Theatre (New York Shakespeare Festival).
B.F.A. and M.F.A. degree from Ohio University.