William Windom

Family tree of William Windom

Actor

AmericanBorn William Windom

American actor

Born on September 28, 1923 in Manhattan, New York , United States

Died on August 16, 2012 in Woodacre, California , United States

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William Windom (September 28, 1923 – August 16, 2012) was an American actor. He played a wide variety of roles in both film and television during a near 60-year career, but is perhaps best known for his role as cartoonist John Monroe in the short-lived comedy My World and Welcome to It (1969–1970) winning him a Primetime Emmy Award, and his recurring role as Dr. Seth Hazlitt alongside Angela Lansbury in Murder, She Wrote (1984–1996).
Windom was also known for his prolific work in television appearing in such shows as Star Trek, The Twilight Zone, Columbo, Gunsmoke, Mission: Impossible, Magnum, P.I., Newhart, and L.A. Law. He also provided the voice of Uncle Chuck in Sonic the Hedgehog.
Windom also appeared in feature films such as the Academy Award-winning To Kill a Mockingbird (1962), The Detective (1968), and Escape from the Planet of the Apes (1971) and in several John Hughes films, Planes, Trains and Automobiles (1987), She's Having a Baby (1988), and Uncle Buck (1989), and Clint Eastwood's True Crime (1999).
...   William Windom (September 28, 1923 – August 16, 2012) was an American actor. He played a wide variety of roles in both film and television during a near 60-year career, but is perhaps best known for his role as cartoonist John Monroe in the short-lived comedy My World and Welcome to It (1969–1970) winning him a Primetime Emmy Award, and his recurring role as Dr. Seth Hazlitt alongside Angela Lansbury in Murder, She Wrote (1984–1996).
Windom was also known for his prolific work in television appearing in such shows as Star Trek, The Twilight Zone, Columbo, Gunsmoke, Mission: Impossible, Magnum, P.I., Newhart, and L.A. Law. He also provided the voice of Uncle Chuck in Sonic the Hedgehog.
Windom also appeared in feature films such as the Academy Award-winning To Kill a Mockingbird (1962), The Detective (1968), and Escape from the Planet of the Apes (1971) and in several John Hughes films, Planes, Trains and Automobiles (1987), She's Having a Baby (1988), and Uncle Buck (1989), and Clint Eastwood's True Crime (1999).


Early life
Windom was born in Manhattan, New York, the son of Isobel Wells (née Peckham) and Paul Windom, an architect. He was the great-grandson of the United States Secretary of the Treasury of the same name, whom the actor physically resembled. He attended Williams College before enlisting in the U.S. Army. He participated in the Army Specialized Training Program where he studied at The Citadel, Antioch College and the University of Kentucky.Windom then became a paratrooper with Company B, 1st Battalion 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division. While stationed in Frankfurt during the Allied occupation of Germany he enrolled in Biarritz American University in France and became involved in drama.


Career

During his early screen career in the 1950s, Windom appeared in TV series including Omnibus and Robert Montgomery Presents, and continued his guest-starring roles in series during the 1960s such as the "Five Characters in Search of an Exit" 1961 episode of The Twilight Zone, that he claimed was his West Coast television debut. He played The Major, one of the five characters who are in an unidentified place, which is revealed at the end of the episode. He reported some years later that Richard Widmark was originally offered the role, but when Widmark learned that the pay was only to be $1,000 for the week, he turned it down. Actress Susan Harrison, who played The Ballerina, got first billing, while Windom got second. Windom said that Murray Matheson, who played The Clown, should have received billing ahead of both of them.
His first leading role in television came in the sitcom The Farmer's Daughter (1963–1966), a series (based on the 1947 film) about a young Minnesota woman (played by Inger Stevens) who becomes the housekeeper for a widowed congressman (Windom), which ran for three seasons.
Windom's first role in film was alongside Gregory Peck in the Oscar-winning To Kill a Mockingbird (1962) as Horace Gilmer, the prosecutor of Tom Robinson (Brock Peters), to Peck's defense lawyer Atticus Finch.
He continued in American television appearances, including The Donna Reed Show, Gunsmoke and Star Trek (playing Commodore Matt Decker, commander of the doomed USS Constellation in the popular 1967 episode "The Doomsday Machine", a role he would reprise nearly 40 years later for Star Trek: New Voyages). He played a recurring role (3 episodes) in "The Invaders" in 1967.
In 1968, Windom starred alongside Peter Falk and Gene Barry in the TV movie Prescription: Murder, the pilot for the TV series Columbo. He would guest star in another edition of the series (titled "Short Fuse") in 1972. In 1971 he played a supporting role alongside Jimmy Stewart, George Kennedy and Kurt Russell in the Columbia production "Fools' Parade".
Windom starred with Frank Sinatra in the film The Detective (1968), playing a homophobic killer, a role that received great reviews from The New York Times. The following year, he had the lead role as cartoonist John Monroe in the sitcom My World and Welcome to It. Although the series only aired for one season, he won the 1970 Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series.
After the cancellation of the series, Windom toured the country for a time in a one-man Thurber show. After the run was completed, he filmed the pilot for a new series Is There a Doctor in the House? with Rosemary Forsyth. The pilot was written with both actors in mind for the two starring roles, and while it was well received by the critics and in viewership ratings in both its first run and a re-run in the summer of 1971, it was not picked up for a series.
After a host of roles in film, TV movies and guest appearances in TV series during the 1970s and 1980s, Windom joined the series Murder, She Wrote in 1985 as Dr. Seth Hazlitt. His initial appearance was in October 1985. (He had previously appeared as a guest star playing another character in April 1985.) The producers enjoyed his work, and consequently invited him to return at the beginning of the second season to take on the role permanently. Windom briefly left the show in 1990 to work on the first television version of Parenthood (based on the 1989 film of the same name), playing the role of patriarch Frank Buckman (played by Jason Robards in the film and, later, Craig T. Nelson in the second TV version). The show was ultimately canceled after 12 episodes and Windom returned to Murder, She Wrote as a semi-regular for the remainder of the run of that series. In all, Windom appeared in 53 episodes of Murder, She Wrote, second only to the show's main star, Angela Lansbury.
Windom continued to appear in film and TV guest roles during the 1990s and 2000s, with appearances in the films Sommersby (1993), Miracle on 34th Street (1994), and Clint Eastwood's True Crime (1999), and episodes of series, including Ally McBeal (2000) and The District (2001), before making his final acting appearance in the 2005 drama Yesterday's Dreams.


Personal life
Bill married his first wife, Carol Keyser, in New York in August 1947. They worked together and he also worked for her father selling insurance for three years. They divorced in December 1955. In 1958 He married actress Barbara Joyce in Edgartown, Massachusetts. She was six years older than Bill. However, he soon moved to California and remained there for work. Bill said the marriage lasted just three years, but the divorce was not finalized until 1963. A few weeks later, he married his third wife, Barbara Clare. She was the granddaughter of MGM founder Louis B. Mayer and 11 years Bill's junior. Bill became stepfather to Barbara's two daughters from a previous marriage. His first child, Rachel, was born in 1964. Bill and Barbara divorced in 1968. In August 1969 he married his fourth wife Jacqulyn D. Hopkins, 19 years his junior. They had two daughters, Heather Juliet in 1970 and Hope Teresa in 1973.In 1974, Bill met Patricia (Fehrle) Tunder while shooting a TV movie; she was working for the production company. Almost a year later, he filed for divorce from Jacqulyn in July 1975.Bill and Patricia, 12 years his junior, married in 1975 on New Year's Eve.
In 1978 Bill welcomed his final child, a son named Rebel Russell.Windom was a tournament chess player, a sailor, a tennis player and a life member of the USCF.


Death
Windom died on August 16, 2012, at the age of 88 at his home in Woodacre, California from congestive heart failure.


Filmography


Films


Television


Theatre


Awards and nominations


References


External links

William Windom at IMDb
William Windom at the Internet Broadway Database
William Windom at the Internet Off-Broadway Database
William Windom at AllMovie

William Windom at Memory Alpha (a Star Trek wiki)
The William Windom Tribute Site



Biography from Wikipedia (see original) under licence CC BY-SA 3.0


 

Geographical origins

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