Actor William Talman was born in Detroit a century ago today, on February 4, 1915. The centennial of his birth is a good time to reflect on a fine actor's career and his significant contributions to classic films and television.
Talman made his mark in a number of film noir and crime titles before moving on to fame as Hamilton Burger on PERRY MASON. Was there ever a creepier villain than his portrayal of the title role in THE HITCH-HIKER (1953)?
Talman was also memorable as the mastermind of the ARMORED CAR ROBBERY (1950), seen below, and the killer in CITY THAT NEVER SLEEPS (1953). ARMORED CAR ROBBERY is one of my very favorite film noir titles.
I especially liked Talman as Robert Mitchum's friend in ONE MINUTE TO ZERO (1952). Other good Talman films reviewed here are THE RACKET (1951), also with Robert Mitchum, and TWO-GUN LADY (1955) with Peggie Castle. He's seen below in THE RACKET with Virginia Huston.
A couple of years ago there was a very nice profile of Talman published in the Detroit Hour.
Prior to his passing Talman courageously filmed an anti-smoking ad hoping to spare others of the lung cancer which would soon claim his life.
William Talman died in 1968, just 53 years old, but leaving behind a body of work which is still enjoyed decades later.