They played one of the most popular and loved on-screen families in Australia throughout the late 1970s, but the cast of hit TV show The Sullivans have undergone some major transformations in the years since the final episode aired in 1983.
The hit drama series followed the lives of a family living in Melbourne after World War II. With moving and funny family moments throughout, including the heartbreaking death of one of the lead characters, it quickly soared to success.
But each of the main actors and actresses have taken different paths in the years since, with young Kitty actress Susan Hannaford having perhaps the most dramatic transformation out of everyone – now looking completely unrecognisable as she lives a lavish life in Hollywood, all while facing mounting debts and legal threats.
She starred alongside on-screen parents Grace and Dave, played by acting legends Lorraine Bayly and Paul Cronin, as well as brothers John, Tom and Terry, played by Andrew McFarlane, Steven Tandy and Richard Morgan respectively.
Sadly, Morgan was diagnosed with motor neurone disease in 2005. He died from the illness eighteen months later. While Bayly couldn’t attend the funeral service, she shared a tribute to be read out which reportedly read: “Although I was only a pretend mother to Richard, he’s the first child I have lost… We who followed the journey of his life are so blessed.”
Here’s a look at where the rest of the cast are now.
She shot to fame as Kitty on the hit TV series, before disappearing from the spotlight for years in what became one of the biggest Australian media mysteries in recent history.
But actress Susan Hannaford, 65, recently made a return to the spotlight in an explosive tell-all chat on Channel 7’s Sunday Night – just months after she was pictured for the first time in years in America, having reinvented herself as a property tycoon.
Hannaford famously disappeared a few years ago, reportedly owing the Commonwealth Bank more than $4.65 million. She was also evicted from a Sydney harbourside property in 2013.
Asked about the money she owes the bank, Hannaford defended her new luxury lifestyle on the TV show, calling it a “family business” before adding: “We’re also talking about an unscrupulous bank. Read between the lines, there’s a lot of complexity.”
Revealing what she’s been doing since leaving Australia, Hannaford explained she’s been “building an empire,” and it’s meant she hasn’t returned home for a long time. However, she added: “Everything has worked out beautifully,” as she showed viewers round her stunning $9 million LA mansion.
She now lives in the US with her grandchildren, nine-year-old Bella and 12-year-old Dante, who she has adopted from her daughter Marquessa – who she had following an affair with eccentric millionaire, Emmanuel Margolin, owner of the famous El Caballo Blanco dancing horses.
She played arguably the most loved character on The Sullivans, before starring in one of the most devastating exit scenes in the TV history. Her character, mum Grace, was killed by a V-bomb in England before the TV series came to an end.
From there, she went on to star in Carson’s Law, which ran from 1982 to 1984, in which she starred as progressive solicitor Jennifer Carson. Meanwhile, other big TV appearances included A Country Practice, G.P., Pizza and Through My Eyes.
She also starred as Faye Hudson, sister of Doug (Terence Donovan), in Neighbours in 1991, and has enjoyed countless theatre roles throughout her career.
Speaking to TV Tonight recently, the actress, 81, admitted she is now contemplating taking a step back from the limelight.
“I’m not saying I’m retiring because I did retire when I was 60-something, because I was having dreadful trouble with my blood pressure,” she said. “But after a year another doctor changed my medications and so I went back. I’ve only retired once, lots of people have retired more than that.
“From now on I will be thinking about it. I’ve worked so hard.”
Just like his on-screen wife, Paul Cronin enjoyed some fame before starring in the TV series as dad Dave – but this is the role he’s arguably most remembered for.
The actor, now 80, has won the Silver Logie five times including three years consecutively from 1978, making him the most Logie-awarded actor in Australia alongside Martin Sacks.
Before joining The Sullivans, Cronin appeared as motorcycle policeman Gary Hogan in the Crawford Productions drama Matlock Police from 1971 to 1975. After starring as Dave Sullivan, he went on to co-host on radio 3AW’s Nightline and Remember When programs.
Cronin is also the host of lifestyle program Discover Down Under that explores the caravan and camping industry in Australia.
Unlike his former co-stars, actor Andrew McFarlane has remained fairly heavily in the public eye after starring as John on the show. When the program ended, he took the lead role in The Flying Doctors, as well as appearing in Rafferty’s Rules as Police Prosecutor Gibson.
He followed his former on-screen mother on to Neighbours, playing Bobby Hoyland in the soap in 2005, while he also starred as the father of Tasha Andrews in Home and Away.
Along with several other notable jobs, perhaps his main one has been presenting Play School since 2000, while he also has regular or leading roles in TV series Love Child, Devil’s Playground and Glitch.
Actor Steven Tandy will always be remembered for his role as Tom Sullivan, the second eldest son in the classic series.
Since then he has enjoyed a quieter time in the limelight than his former on-screen siblings, but has appeared often in film and stage roles. Tandy played the role of Commodore Lassard in the Police Academy Stunt Show at Warner Bros. Movie World in Queensland for 13 years.
He later returned to NIDA in 1995 to study directing and has continued his work in theatre and directing ever since. According to his official Facebook page, he’s currently an actor at Queensland Theatre and previously worked at Brisbane Arts Theatre.