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Bewitched Statue - On Wednesday, June 15, 2005, the folks from the nostalgia cable channel TV Land unveiled a sculpture of the nose-twitching witch, Samantha Stephens from the situation comedy BEWITCHED/ABC/1964-72.

Elizabeth Montgomery as Samathan Stephens - BEWITCHED

Located in Lappin Park at the corner of Washington and Essex Streets in the heart of downtown Salem, the 9-foot tall, 3,000 pound statue features the bronze likeness of actress Elizabeth Montgomery (died of cancer in 1995) sitting sidesaddle on a broomstick in front of a crescent moon as her skirt flutters behind in a breeze.

Larry W. Jones, president of TV Land, the cable television network said, "'Bewitched' is a timeless series...Today, we're here to honor a character, an actress, and a show that remains close to our hearts."

Among the 1500 in attendance at the ceremony were the show's director William Asher, who was married to Montgomery, and actors from the original series, including Bernard Fox (who played Dr. Bombay), Kasey Rogers (Louise Tate), and Erin Murphy (Tabitha Stephens). Some fans in the crowd wore pointy witch hats and T-shirts with the show's logo.

Not everyone in attendance was "enchanted" when the TV Land executives unveiled the statue of Samantha the Witch amid a puff of smoke.

Some felt the timing of the TV LAND statue was just a crass promotional gimmick to coincide with the June 24th release of the movie remake Bewitched (2005) starring Nicole Kidman and Will Ferrell.

Other critics felt that the erection of the statue in Salem, Massachusetts trivializes the tragic murder of 20 people who were put to death in 1692 after they were falsely accused of witchcraft. Some in the crowd carried signs and banners reading "Tragedy is not a Joking Subject" "Is There no limit to this schlock?", "Shame" and "Elizabeth Who?

Mayor Stanley J. Usovicz Jr. accepted the statue on behalf of Salem. ''We do, in fact, have a great and rich history," Usovicz said. ''And there is more than enough room for contemporary art in modern culture."

The life-sized 'Bewitched' statue was created by Studio EIS, a three-dimensional design and sculpture studio in New York founded by brothers Ivan and Elliot Schwartz.

The same studio also created 'The Andy Griffith Show' statue which was unveiled in Raleigh, NC in October 2003 and the statue commemorating Bob Newhart's role as Dr. Robert Hartley on 'The Bob Newhart Show' in July 2004.

On the original BEWITCHED series (set in Westport, Connecticut), Samantha Stephens married a mortal named Darrin Stephens and promised to love, honor and "try" to keep her witch powers in check so she could lead a "normal" life.

As much as Sam tried, there were times when she just needed to fall back on her witchcraft to get her husband or herself out of trouble. As Sam would say "Witchcraft got me into this mess, I see no reason why witchcraft can't get me out of it."


Gloucester, Massachusetts Fisherman Statue - BEWITICHED

Bewitched Fisherman - This famous Gloucester, Massachusetts statue was the focus of an episode on the sitcom BEWITCHED/ABC/1964-72.

While Samantha the witch visited the New England area to attend a Witches Convention in historic Salem, her husband Darrin Stephens (Dick Sargent) was enchanted by his mischievous cousin-in-law Serena the witch (Elizabeth Montgomery in a dual role) who turned him into the likeness of a local monument called The Fisherman Statue (official title "The Man at the Wheel").

While Darrin took the place of the statue, Serena gallivanted around town with the reincarnated image of the Fisherman Statue. For the role, Dick Sargent was dressed in a fisherman's raincoat and hat and then sprayed all over with a rusty green color to simulate the weather worn statue.

The real statue upon which the episode was based stands at Stacey Boulevard in the town of Gloucester, Massachusetts. It was created by Leonard Craske in 1923 for a dedication ceremony honoring the town's 300th anniversary.  It is dedicated to the thousands of  Gloucester fishermen lost at sea since the early 1600's. The inscription (Psalm 107) on the base of the statue reads: "They That Go Down To The Sea in Ships."

The reason why the cast of BEWITCHED traveled to New England was because their Hollywood stage burned down in April 1970. While they rebuilt the show's filming stage the production cast hit the road filming episodes No. 202 "Salem, Here We Come." (aired 10-1-70); No. 203 "The Salem Saga" (aired 10-8-70); No. 204 "Samantha's Hot Bed Warmer" (aired 10-15-70); and the Fisherman's statue episode "No. 205 "Darrin on a Pedestal" (aired 10-22-70).


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