Thursday, August 31, 2017

Richard Anderson, 1926-2017

Actor Richard Anderson has passed away at the age of 91.

Anderson was born in New Jersey on August 8, 1926, and he died today, August 31st.

There are two distinct periods in Anderson's long career I especially enjoy: his early career years in numerous films at MGM, where he gradually moved up from bit roles to meatier supporting parts, and of course his role as Oscar Goldman on THE SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN (1974-78), starring Lee Majors, and THE BIONIC WOMAN (1976-78), starring Lindsay Wagner.

While I wasn't a particular fan of THE SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN, I never missed THE BIONIC WOMAN, where the heart of the show for me was Anderson's sympathetic and often touching mentor/friend relationship with the Emmy-winning Wagner.

Wagner was quoted today in The Hollywood Reporter: "I can't begin to say how much I have always admired and have been grateful for the elegance and loving friendship I was blessed to have with Richard Anderson." Majors called Anderson "a dear and loyal friend."

Coincidentally, Wagner and Majors were just reunited in a new Hallmark Channel film, EAT, PLAY, LOVE (2017).

My husband had the good fortune to meet Anderson at San Diego Comic Con a few years ago and said they had a wonderful conversation. My friend Will McKinley interviewed Anderson briefly at the 2012 TCM Classic Film Festival; you can see the video here.

With Natalie Wood in A CRY IN THE NIGHT (1956):

Anderson was briefly married to Carol Lee Ladd, daughter of agent Sue Carol and stepdaughter of Alan Ladd; he later married Katharine Thalberg, the daughter of Norma Shearer and Irving Thalberg. He is survived by three daughters.

Obituaries have also appeared in USA Today and The New York Times.

Farewell to an actor who brought a special something extra to everything in which he appeared.

Richard Anderson films reviewed at Laura's Miscellaneous Musings: A LIFE OF HER OWN (1950), PAYMENT ON DEMAND (1951), CAUSE FOR ALARM! (1951), NO QUESTIONS ASKED (1951), RICH, YOUNG AND PRETTY (1951), THE PEOPLE AGAINST O'HARA (1951), JUST THIS ONCE (1952), SCARAMOUCHE (1952), I LOVE MELVIN (1953), GIVE A GIRL A BREAK (1953), ESCAPE FROM FORT BRAVO (1953), HIT THE DECK (1955), A CRY IN THE NIGHT (1956) (also here), THREE BRAVE MEN (1956), THE GUNFIGHT AT DODGE CITY (1959), and SEVEN DAYS IN MAY (1964) (also here).


Blogger Hamlette said...

Aww, this is a bummer. I always remember him best as this annoying friend of Diego's in a few episodes of Walt Disney's Zorro, and have felt a fondness for him since I was a kid because of that show. He was in an ep of my favorite TV show Combat! too.

RIP Mr. Anderson :-(

5:33 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

Richard Anderson sure did a lot of memorable TV! And by all accounts he was a class act. He'll be missed.

Best wishes,

5:08 PM  

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