David Mandel (Lawerence)

Mini Biography

Although only David Lawrence’s name is shown in the credits on “Bewitched” (1964), the role of Adam Stephens was actually played by David and his twin brother Greg. It was a convention in television shows that babies and toddlers were played by twins, since the law required that child actors can work for only a certain time on television, and having twins play one character meant that workload for each child was cut in half. David and Greg Lawrence were discovered by an enterprising agent who had called pediatricians in California to see if they knew of any six-month old twins for an episode of “Get Smart.”

A pediatrician in Sherman Oaks told the agent that he knew of “absolutely gorgeous, small-for-their-age, nine-month-old twins.” He offered to call their adoptive mother to see if she would be interested in a meeting with the agent. The mother sent the agent pictures of the twins. Even though, “Get Smart” was canceled, the agent knew she could get work for the twins based on their photogenic qualities. They were soon in demand for commercials and landed every role that they auditioned, such as for Listerine, Pillsbury, and Southwestern Bell. Meanwhile, the producers of “Bewitched” had done an exhaustive search throughout the state of California for a set of twins to play Adam, the warlock son of witch Samantha and her mortal husband Darrin. When they saw the Lawrence boys, they fell for the twins’ dark hair, blue eyes, rosy cheeks, cleft chins, and great smiles.

What gave the twins an edge was that they had same quizzical quirk in their eyebrows that Elizabeth Montgomery had. Once cast, the boys enjoyed working on the show and even fought over whose turn it was to be in the scene. The twins’ biggest episode was “Adam, Warlock or Washout,” where Samantha and her parents were worried that Adam hasn’t shown any talent for witchcraft. Samantha’s father Maurice puts a spell on Adam, where he gets to fly. The twins enjoyed filming the episode, because they were wired to fly and because they worked with actor Maurice Evans who played Maurice. The viewers were happy with the episode when Maurice takes the spell off of Adam, at which time, he does show a genuine talent for witchcraft. The twins were troupers, since they both both had ear infections and raging fevers when they filmed the episode. Once the final season of “Bewitched” ended, the twins parents decided to retire them from show business and just be regular kids. With the exception of the Emmy-nominated television movie, Victory at Entebbe (1976) (TV) with Elizabeth Taylor, Anthony Hopkins, and Kirk Douglas