FutureStarr

David Janssen:

David Janssen:

David Janssen was born David Harold Meyer in 1931 in Naponee, Nebraska, to Berniece Mae (Graf) and Harold Edward Meyer, a banker. He was of German, and some Swiss-German and Ulster-Scots, descent. David took the surname of his stepfather, Eugene Janssen. The Janssen family settled in Hollywood when he was a teenager and he attended Fairfax High School, where he developed an interest in acting. His film debut was a bit part in It's a Pleasure (1945), and at the age of 18 signed a contract with 20th Century-Fox. However, the studio dropped him after allegedly becoming disenchanted with his odd hairline and big prominent ears. Janssen had better luck at Universal, where he signed on in the early 1950s and became a supporting player in 32 films before appearing on TV as the star of Richard Diamond, Private Detective (1957). He resumed his movie career in 1961, a year after the series ended. His biggest success came from his lead in the series The Fugitive (1963), playing the haunted, hunted Dr. Richard Kimble, on the run for a murder he didn't commit. After the series ended, Janssen launched himself into a grueling schedule by appearing in lead and supporting roles in movies, but he had better luck with made-for-TV-movie roles and a short-lived series, O'Hara United States Treasury (1971). He had another hit series with the cult favorite Harry O (1973). Janssen continued appearing in lead roles in nearly 20 made-for-TV-movies during the 1970s as well as other TV projects. He died in 1980 from a sudden heart attack at his Malibu home at the age of 48. Unfounded speculation holds that Janssen succumbed to alcoholism, a problem that plagued him most of his adult life. There were even unfounded rumors about drug use. However, a much more reasonable explanation for David Janssen's sudden demise is that this intense, dedicated, determined actor simply worked himself to death. (Source: www.imdb.com)

David Janssen was born David Harold Meyer in 1931 in Naponee, Nebraska, to Berniece Mae (Graf) and Harold Edward Meyer, a banker. He was of German, and some Swiss-German and Ulster-Scots, descent. David took the surname of his stepfather, Eugene Janssen. The Janssen family settled in Hollywood when he was a teenager and he attended Fairfax High School, where he developed an interest in acting. His film debut was a bit part in It's a Pleasure (1945), and at the age of 18 signed a contract with 20th Century-Fox. However, the studio dropped him after allegedly becoming disenchanted with his odd hairline and big prominent ears. Janssen had better luck at Universal, where he signed on in the early 1950s and became a supporting player in 32 films before appearing on TV as the star of Richard Diamond, Private Detective (1957). He resumed his movie career in 1961, a year after the series ended. His biggest success came from his lead in the series The Fugitive (1963), playing the haunted, hunted Dr. Richard Kimble, on the run for a murder he didn't commit. After the series ended, Janssen launched himself into a grueling schedule by appearing in lead and supporting roles in movies, but he had better luck with made-for-TV-movie roles and a short-lived series, O'Hara United States Treasury (1971). He had another hit series with the cult favorite Harry O (1973). Janssen continued appearing in lead roles in nearly 20 made-for-TV-movies during the 1970s as well as other TV projects. He died in 1980 from a sudden heart attack at his Malibu home at the age of 48. Unfounded speculation holds that Janssen succumbed to alcoholism, a problem that plagued him most of his adult life. There were even unfounded rumors about drug use. However, a much more reasonable explanation for David Janssen's sudden demise is that this intense, dedicated, determined actor simply worked himself to death. (Source: www.imdb.com)

Actor David Janssen is best remembered for his role as Dr. Richard Kimble in "The Fugitive," the classic suspense television show that ran for four seasons in the mid 1960s. Accused and convicted of murdering his wife, Janssen becomes an outlaw when the train taking him to prison crashes, and he begins his own manhunt for the one-armed murderer who got away. Before hitting it big with the show, he played numerous bit parts in forgettable B movies over the years, but his movie career never really took off. Television was where Janssen made his name and fortune. In 1957, he played one of TV's first tough-guy detectives in "Richard Diamond, Private Detective." Post-"Fugitive," he starred in the crime show "O'Hara, United States Treasury," co-created by "Dragnet"'s Jack Webb, and in the short-lived "Harry O," the latter show fondly remembered by viewers and critics as one of the best crime shows of its day. Although his big-screen career never panned out, many action fans will remember him best as the doubting journalist in need of some political indoctrination from John Wayne in the gung-ho Vietnam War film "The Green Berets." Janssen died in 1980 of a heart attack at the age of 48. (Source: www.rottentomatoes.com)

 

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