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John Agar Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (4) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (2) | Trivia (8) | Personal Quotes (12)

Overview (4)

Date of Birth 31 January 1921Chicago, Illinois, USA
Date of Death 7 April 2002Burbank, California, USA  (emphysema)
Birth NameJohn George Agar
Height 6' 1" (1.85 m)

Mini Bio (1)

John Agar was born in Chicago, the eldest of four children. In World War II, Sgt. John Agar was a United States Army Air Force physical instructor. His 1945 marriage at the Wilshire Memorial Church to "America's Sweetheart" Shirley Temple put him in the public eye for the first time, and a movie contract with independent producer David O. Selznick quickly ensued.

Agar debuted opposite John Wayne, Henry Fonda and Temple in John Ford's Fort Apache (1948), initial film in the famed director's "Cavalry Trilogy".

His marriage to Shirley Temple ended in 1949, while his movie career continued.

Popular with fans of Westerns and sci-fi flicks, Agar was a staple at film conventions and autograph shows.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Tom Weaver <TomWeavr@aol.com>

Spouse (2)

Loretta Agar (16 May 1951 - 27 January 2000) (her death) (2 children)
Shirley Temple (19 September 1945 - 7 December 1950) (divorced) (1 child)

Trivia (8)

In 1972 "Famous Monsters of Filmland" Magazine reported John Agar "Dead"!! Agar lived to autograph several copies of the articles.
His marriage to actress Shirley Temple started his film career in the 1940s.
The claim that he had done a "pink film" in Denmark was a gag. He starred in Journey to the Seventh Planet (1962), which was shot in Denmark, by writer/producer/director Sidney W. Pink.
Interviewed in Tom Weaver's books "Interviews with B Science Fiction and Horror Movie Makers" (McFarland & Co., 1988) and "They Fought in the Creature Features" (McFarland & Co., 1995).
He has an entry in Jean Tulard's "Dictionnaire du cinéma/Les acteurs" published in Paris in 2007 by RobertLaffont/Bouquins (page 14).
Father, with Shirley Temple, of daughter Linda Susan Agar (born on January 30, 1948).
Was one of the dozens of Hollywood celebrities who made regular weekend visits to renowned animal trainer and Hollywood animal behaviorist Ralph Helfer's Africa U.S.A. Exotic Animal Ranch in Soledad Canyon, California, to play with the animals and pitch in with the chores.
After Universal put Agar into a third horror film, The Mole People (1956), he became disillusioned with the studio, especially since he had to compete with Tony Curtis, Rock Hudson, George Nader and Jeff Chandler for choice leading man roles, and he left the studio.

Personal Quotes (12)

I don't resent being identified with B science fiction movies at all. Why should I? Even though they were not considered top of the line, for those people that like sci-fi, I guess they were fun. My whole feeling about working as an actor is, if I give anybody any enjoyment, I'm doing my job, and that's what counts.
To me it's much easier to play in something that's real -- a natural situation -- than it is to deal with abstracts and the unknown. It's sort of difficult to make them come to life! I always had the feeling that when people looked at some of these science fiction things we were going to get a big laugh. On a couple of occasions some of the things that were supposed to frighten people really looked rather ludicrous -- funny, rather than scary. I feel it's more natural to deal in something that people understand, rather than something that human beings don't come in contact with.
[in a 1991 interview] Acting is something that I love to do, but it's a part of me that's often dormant. So, when I get an opportunity to go on a film set it's like somebody's pushing a button that has been idle for a long time and right away I'm ready to get going at it. It's fun for me to be able to get back into it because it's a part of my life that I've really enjoyed.
To me the idea of just working is what's fun, I don't give a doggone what kind of part. Walter Huston said it years ago: "I don't care about billing. If the show is good and I'm good in it, people are going to say, 'Who was that?' And if it's not, I don't want 'em to know I was in it!"
Who wants to shake the hand of the first man to put it to America's sweetheart?
[about Daughter of Dr. Jekyll (1957)] I did that picture strictly for the bread. I didn't fluff it--but it wasn't my cup of tea. I just didn't believe it.
[about director Jack Arnold] I've always had nothing but great respect for Jack Arnold. I did Revenge of the Creature (1955) for him and then the next year we did Tarantula (1955), and we got along very well. So far as I was concerned, he was a very knowledgeable director and he gave his all trying to make 'em the best that he could.
[on the "floating brain" from The Brain from Planet Arous (1957)] I thought it was terrible--just awful! They really could have done a heck of a better than that--it looked like a balloon with a face painted on it. And that's probably what it was, too.
[on working with director Edward L. Cahn] Edward Cahn was Mr. Speed-O; he'd jump up and almost get in the shot before he'd yell, "Cut!".
[about the many "B" sci-fi films he made in the 1950s] I always had the kind of feeling that when people looked at some of these science-fiction things, we were going to get a big laugh.
[about working with director Larry Buchanan] Larry, God bless him, is a nice guy but he was really not a director . . . he didn't even know not to "cross the line", which is one of the simplest things there is in directing . . . The first picture I did for Larry was Zontar: The Thing from Venus (1966). Curse of the Swamp Creature (1966) came next; then we did a war film called Hell Raiders (1968). Of course I never thought those things would ever see the light of day--that was the only reason i did 'em!
A lot of the pictures I made were not released--they escaped.

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