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Denver Pyle

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#1 sunnmagic


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Posté 06 septembre 2007 - 01:07

A rather wanderlust fellow before he latched onto acting, slow-drawling Southern character actor Denver Pyle was actually born in Colorado in 1920, the son of farmers. He attended a university for a time but dropped out to become a drummer. When that didn't pan out he drifted from job to job, working everywhere from the oil fields in Oklahoma to the shrimp boats in Texas. In 1940 he moseyed on off to Los Angeles and briefly found employment as a highly unlikely NBC page. WWII interrupted things after enlisting in the Navy, and he was given a medical discharge in 1942 after receiving wounds at Guadacanal. Working for an aircraft plant in Los Angeles as a riveter, the rangy actor happened upon the entertainment field after receiving a role in a amateur theatre production and getting spotted by a talent scout. Training with such renown teachers as Maria Ouspenskaya and Michael Chekhov, he made his film debut in The Guilt of Janet Ames (1947). Pyle went on to score in hundreds of film and TV parts providing Western authenticity to many of his roles. A minor villain or sidekick in the early 1950s, he often received no billing. Prematurely white-haired (a family trait), he became a familiar face on episodes of "Gunsmoke" and "Bonanza" and also developed a close association with actor John Wayne, appearing in many of his later films including The Horse Soldiers (1959), The Alamo (1960), The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962) and Cahill: U.S. Marshal (1973). Pyle's more important movie roles came late in his career. One of his most memorable was in Bonnie and Clyde (1967) as Sheriff Frank Haimer, the handcuffed hostage of the duo who spits in Faye Dunaway's face after she coyly poses with him for a camera shot. He settled easily into hillbilly/mountain men types in his later years and became a household face for his crotchety presence on "The Life and Times of Grizzly Adams" and "The Dukes of Hazzard." He died of lung cancer at age 77.


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