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J.D. Cannon Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (4) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (1) | Trivia (8)

Overview (4)

Date of Birth 24 April 1922Salmon, Idaho, USA
Date of Death 20 May 2005Binnewater, New York, USA  (natural causes)
Birth NameJohn Donovan Cannon
Height 5' 11" (1.8 m)

Mini Bio (1)

John Donovan Cannon graduated from high school in his hometown of Salmon, Idaho, in 1940. His subsequent studies at the Academy of Dramatic Arts were interrupted as a result of wartime military service from 1942 to 1945. After the war, Cannon returned to New York to complete his training and acting on the stage, both on and off-Broadway, trying his hand at a wide variety of parts, mostly in classical plays. He essayed "Petruchio" in "The Taming of the Shrew" and appeared on Broadway in "Henry IV", "Lysistrata" and "Peer Gynt". Leading roles were few and far between, however.

Once Cannon had found his niche as a frequent guest star on numerous television episodes, his career as a motion picture actor became somewhat desultory, though he had memorable roles in two films: as the road gang convict "Society Red" in Cool Hand Luke (1967); and as the gangster "Calhoun" in Cotton Comes to Harlem (1970). His first TV appearance was as a poker-hustling master sergeant in a 1958 episode of The Phil Silvers Show (1955). His tough screen persona was pretty well established by the mid-60's, though, against character, he portrayed the timid weakling "Lloyd Chandler" (witness to the original crime committed by the "one-armed man") in the final denouement installment of The Fugitive (1963). He was at his scene-stealing best in an episode of The Invaders (1967) as "Peter Kalter", a strangely sympathetic mobster who turns against his own outfit and aids the chief protagonist against the impending alien threat.

In his recurring role as lawman "Harry Briscoe" in the western comedy series Alias Smith and Jones (1971), Cannon was again given the opportunity to deliver some enjoyably caustic one-liners, something at which he excelled. He will arguably be most fondly remembered for his popular portrayal of the perpetually exasperated, choleric, cigar-chewing NYPD Chief of Detectives, "Peter B. Clifford", in McCloud (1970) (1970-77).

- IMDb Mini Biography By: I.S.Mowis

Spouse (1)

Alice Mary McCamley (1947 - 20 March 2005) (his death)

Trivia (8)

Idaho-born character actor known for his gruff, bossy roles especially on 70s TV.
Graduated from the American Academy of Dramatic Arts
Served in the U.S. Army during WWII.
Retired in 1991 following an appearance on Law & Order (1990).
He died only one day before Stephen Elliott, with whom he had appeared with the Law & Order (1990) episode Law & Order: The Secret Sharers (1991).
Wore a toupee in most of his later roles. The exception was an episode of Remington Steele (1982) (TV series 1982-1986) from McCloud (1970) producer Michael Gleason. Here, Cannon played a TV news anchor who only wore his toupee while broadcasting. The rest of the time, he gloried in his dome. The toupee showed up when it shouldn't have, solving the case.
He bore a strong resemblance to Don Adams.
He made guest appearances on both of the longest running prime time dramas in US television history: Gunsmoke (1955) and Law & Order (1990).

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