Tony Danza on the debut of his new reality series “Teach”
By Marilyn Beck and Stacy Jenel Smith
HollywoodNews.com: Whatever else, Tony Danza certainly deserves credit for allowing the good, the bad and the unflattering to show on his Friday (10/1)-debuting A&E reality series, “Teach.” The former “Taxi” and “Who’s the Boss” star had the cameras with him for his full semester of teaching English at an urban Philadelphia high school – and it wasn’t pretty. Viewers will see 10th graders complaining that he talks too much, asking impertinent questions, worrying that he’s incompetent, and saying they didn’t have a clue who he was. They will see Tony crying.
How did he deal with this ego bruising? “I never thought about anything except trying to be a good teacher,” he tells us. “I very rarely even considered the show. I don’t mean to denigrate it, dismiss it or discount it. I thought the show would only be good if I was good teacher or a real car wreck.
“By the way, I felt a tremendous responsibility to these kids, to the other teachers, and to the school. It was overwhelming. Hence the crying. I became the crybaby of all time,” he goes on. “The kids call me crybaby. You start to care so much, it breaks your heart every minute.”
He’s learned, “When you’re a performer, you think of yourself all the time – how’s my hair, my body, my face? When you become a teacher, you have no time to think about yourself.”
As Tony explains on the show, he hopes to shine a light on the demands and difficulties facing teachers in these days of electronics-toting teens. He earned a teaching degree before becoming a TV star and, at 59, wanted to do something meaningful.
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