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Tony Lee Dow (born April 13, 1945) is an Americanmarker film producer, director, sculptor, and a television child actor of the 1950s and 1960s.

Dow is best known for his role in the television sitcom Leave It to Beaver, which ran in primetime from 1957 to 1963 and in which he played Wallace "Wally" Cleaver, the older son of June and Ward Cleaver (Barbara Billingsley and Hugh Beaumont), and the brother of Theodore "Beaver" Cleaver (Jerry Mathers).

Early life and career

Dow was born in Hollywood, Californiamarker to John Stevens, a designer and general contractor, and Muriel Virginia Dow (née Montrose) (May 27, 1906–April 30, 2001), a stunt woman in early Western and Clara Bow's movie double in Hollywood. In his youth, Dow was a Junior Olympics diving champion. He won the role of Wally Cleaver in a casting call with almost no previous acting experience.

Dow remained on the series until it ended in 1963. After the run of Leave It to Beaver, he appeared on My Three Sons, Dr. Kildare, Mr. Novak (five episodes in three different roles), The Greatest Show on Earth, and Never Too Young. From 1965 to 1968, Dow served in the National Guard, interrupting his acting career. On his return to acting, he guest-starred in Adam-12, Love American Style, The Mod Squad, The Hardy Boys and Emergency!

During the 1970s, he continued acting while working in the construction business and studying journalism and filmmaking.

Dow's most recent screen appearance was in the 2003 film Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star.

Behind the camera

In 1986, he wrote an episode of The New Leave It to Beaver, and in 1989, he made his directorial debut with an episode of The New Lassie, followed by episodes of Get a Life, Harry and the Hendersons, Swamp Thing, Coach, Babylon 5, Crusade, and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.

Dow also served as the visual effects supervisor for Babylon 5. In 1996, he provided visual effects for the Fox TVM Doctor Who.

Personal life

Unlike his Leave It to Beaver co-star, Jerry Mathers, Dow attended Van Nuys High School, alongside future Dallas star Steve Kanaly, and graduated in 1963, the same year Beaver was demised.

On June 14, 1969, Dow married Carol M. Marlow. In 1973, they had one son, Christopher T. Dow, before divorcing in 1978.

Dow is currently married to Lauren Shulkind, whom he wed in 1980. They live in the Santa Monica mountainsmarker.

In the 1990s, Dow revealed that he has struggled and was eventually diagnosed with clinical depression. He has since starred in self-help videos chronicling this battle, including "Beating the Blues" (1998).

Dow has become a serious, respected amateur sculptor, creating abstract bronze sculptures. In his artist statement, he says the following about his work: "The figures are abstract and not meant to represent reality but rather the truth of the interactions as I see and feel them. I find the wood in the hills of Topanga Canyonmarker and each piece evolves from my subconscious. I produce limited editions of nine bronzes using the lost wax process from molds of the original burl sculpture." One of his bronze pieces is on display in the backyard garden of Barbara Billingsley, who played his mother on Leave It to Beaver. Dow was chosen as one of three sculptors to show at the Société Nationale Des Beaux Arts exhibition, in the Carrousel du Louvremarker, in Paris, Francemarker, in December 2008, representing the United States delegation comprising artists from the Karen Lynne Gallery. The sculpture that will be shown at the Louvre, titled "Unarmed Warrior", is a bronze figure of a woman holding a shield.



Visual effects



Production Manager


  1. Theatre, Film, and Television Biographies
  2. Interviews at
  3. IMDb biography of Tony Dow
  4. NNMD: Tony Dow
  5. Tony Down bio,
  6. [ "Leave It to Beaver:50 Years later",, September 19, 2007, Retrieved on October 6, 2007.
  7. Karen Lynne Gallery
  8. "Tony Dow: From 'Leave It to Beaver' to the Louvre," Los Angeles Times, November 11, 2008

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