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Ray Walston Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (4) | Mini Bio (2) | Spouse (1) | Trivia (10) | Personal Quotes (5)

Overview (4)

Date of Birth 2 December 1914New Orleans, Louisiana, USA
Date of Death 1 January 2001Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, California, USA  (lupus)
Birth NameHerman Walston
Height 5' 8" (1.73 m)

Mini Bio (2)

Born in New Orleans Louisiana, Ray Walston started his acting career as a spear carrier with a local stock company. When the family moved to Houston, Texas, Walston's father wanted to teach him the oil business, but Walston instead joined a traveling repertory company (selling tickets as well as acting). He went on to associate with Margo Jones at the Houston Civic Theater for six years, then spent three seasons with the Cleveland Playhouse before arriving in New York in 1945. He has won a Tony Award for his performance as the Devil in Broadway's "Damn Yankees", two Emmy Awards for Picket Fences (1992), and become a household name playing the extraterrestrial "Uncle Martin" on My Favorite Martian (1963). Ray Walston died at age 86 of lupus on New Year's Day 2001 in Beverly Hills, California.

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

Ray Walston was born on December 2, 1914 in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA and began his acting career in 1939, receiving his first big break when cast as the reporter in the Ben Hecht-Charles MacArthur classic "The Front Page". Later, he came to the New York critics' attention with the play "The Alchemist". Prominent in Walston's career was an association with director George Abbott which included appearing in five productions over a span of 20 years. They began working together in 1949, around the time Walston was cast in "South Pacific". Then, in 1955, Walston won a Tony Award as best male musical comedy star in the Abbott production of "Damn Yankees". Walston came to Hollywood in 1957 for Kiss Them for Me (1957). Since then, his other films have included The Apartment (1960), Portrait in Black (1960), Paint Your Wagon (1969), The Sting (1973), Popeye (1980), Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982) and O'Hara's Wife (1982). In 1963, he began the television series My Favorite Martian (1963), which ran for three years. Ray Walston died at age 86 of lupus on New Year's Day 2001 in Beverly Hills, California.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Anonymous

Spouse (1)

Ruth Calvert (3 November 1943 - 1 January 2001) (his death) (1 child)

Trivia (10)

Daughter, Katherine Ann
His last screen appearance was in the Oct. 15, 2000 season premiere of Touched by an Angel (1994) as a wealthy entrepreneur who disinherits his materialistic son to teach him that there are more valuable things in life than money.
Won Broadway's 1956 Tony Award as Best Actor (Musical) for "Damn Yankees!", a role he recreated in the film version of the same name, Damn Yankees! (1958).
Best remembered by the public for his starring role in My Favorite Martian (1963).
Replaced Peter Sellers in Kiss Me, Stupid (1964) after Sellers had suffered a heart attack mere weeks into the production.
He was awarded a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for Live Theatre at 7070 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California.
Along with Vincent Schiavelli, he is one of only two actors to appear in both Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982) and the subsequent television adaptation Fast Times (1986).
Owned top secret security clearance for a while as he was narrating Operation Hardtack reports for US military for the development of nuclear weapons.
He appeared in two Best Picture Academy Award winners: The Apartment (1960) and The Sting (1973).

Personal Quotes (5)

I never should have done My Favorite Martian (1963). I didn't work in TV or film for three years after. Everyone thought of me as a Martian. Do you know what it's like to go to Madrid, Spain, on vacation and have a guy yell out, 'Hey, Martin!' and put antennas behind his head? When that happens, you know your career is dead. -- "USA TODAY," 1995
"I thought, 'What am I doing here? I'm running around with two pieces of wire coming out of my head. I must be crazy." -- recalling his thoughts after four episodes of My Favorite Martian (1963).
I have 30 seconds to tell you I have been waiting 60 years to get on this stage. -- his 1995 Emmy acceptance speech
I'm an actor and that's it -- period. Producers and studios have thrown many things at me over the years: comedy, tragedy, drama, drawing-room comedy. I've managed to keep my head above water in most of these genres, but I don't put myself in any one category like "comic actor" or "musical-comedy" actor. (on being labeled a character actor)
My Favorite Martian (1963) ended after three years, because the people at the top killed the goose that laid the golden egg. They didn't know how to keep the goose alive.

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