An exception was as a big-city police officer in a short-lived series, McClain's Law , co-starring with Marshall Colt. He also starred in a TV remake of Wayne's classic Red River An urban legend has it that John Wayne was offered the leading role of Matt Dillon in the longtime favorite television show Gunsmoke , but he turned it down, instead recommending James Arness for the role. He also masterfully lampooned his straight-arrow image when he portrayed bumbling airline pilot Clarence Oveur in the disaster movie spoof Airplane! An Autobiography was released in September , with a foreword by Burt Reynolds who had been a cast member of Gunsmoke for several years in the s. Early life[ edit ] James Arness was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota  on May 26, ; he dropped the "u" in his last name when he started acting.
Wayne introduced Arness in a prologue to the first episode of Gunsmoke, in After two years in the air force, he enrolled at the University of Minnesota as a drama major and worked in summer stock before following his brother west to Hollywood. After undergoing several surgeries, he was honorably discharged on January 29, The authority and trust he projected made him a favourite for adverts late in his life, and he was often encouraged to go into politics. He later took on equally formidable human villains each week on Mission: In his later years, Graves brought his white-haired eminence to public television as host of Discover: Impossible as well as the Airplane! On the one hand, he said, he considered the role a challenge, "but it also scared me". Arness - due to his height - was the first man to be ordered off his landing craft to determine the depth of the water; it came up to his waist. He also masterfully lampooned his straight-arrow image when he portrayed bumbling airline pilot Clarence Oveur in the disaster movie spoof Airplane! Peter used the stage name "Graves", a maternal family name. Impossible, which began in He began with RKO , who immediately changed his name from "Aurness". Graves had been a champion hurdler in high school in Minnesota, as well as a clarinet player in dance bands and a radio announcer. He was credited in The Farmer's Daughter as Arness. Normally cast as a hero, he turned in an unforgettable performance early in his career as the treacherous Nazi spy in Billy Wilder's prisoner-of-war drama Stalag The film-makers Jim Abrahams and David and Jerry Zucker had written a satire on the airplane-in-trouble movies, and they wanted Graves and fellow actors Lloyd Bridges, Leslie Nielsen and Robert Stack to spoof their serious images. The only part of this story that is true is that Wayne did indeed recommend Arness for the part. He found enough success there to send for his college sweetheart, Joan Endress. Arness noted that he realized, "[I]f I was going to write a book about my life, I better do it now This article is over 8 years old Airplane!: Graves's career began with cheaply made exploitation films such as It Conquered the World, in which he battled a carrot-shaped monster from Venus, and Beginning of the World, in which he fought a giant grasshopper. However, his wounds continued to bother him throughout the rest of his life; in later years he had to cope with chronic leg pain that often became acute, such as when he mounted horses during his performance on Gunsmoke. Graves was returning from brunch with his wife of nearly 60 years and his family when he had what Graves's doctor believed was a heart attack, Brokaw said. Also filmed in Australia, it lasted six years on NBC. All agreed, but Graves admitted to nervousness. Graves credited clever writing for the show's success.
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James and Ian being siblings for 4 minutes straight
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