James Franciscus Poster


Jump to: Overview (5)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Family (4)  | Trade Mark (4)  | Trivia (15)

Overview (5)

Born in Clayton, Missouri, USA
Died in North Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, USA  (emphysema)
Birth NameJames Grover Franciscus
Nicknames Jimmy
Height 5' 10½" (1.79 m)

Mini Bio (1)

James Grover Franciscus graduated magna cum laude from Yale University in 1957 with a B.A. in English and theater. His father, John Allen Franciscus, was a pilot killed in action during WWII. His mother was named Loraine (nee Grover) and he had one sibling, a brother named John. Mr. Franciscus is best known for his work in television, including Naked City (1958), The Investigators (1961), Mr. Novak (1963) and Longstreet (1971). He also made numerous guest appearances in other popular television programs, starred in numerous television movies, and appeared in numerous feature films. In the mid 1980s, he became dissatisfied with the roles offered to him and turned his attention to screen writing. As co-founder of Omnibus Productions, he produced many classic films, such as Heidi (1968), Jane Eyre (1970), David Copperfield (1970), Kidnapped (1971), and The Red Pony (1973). An avid tennis player, he founded the James Franciscus Celebrity Tennis Tournament in the mid 1970s to raise money for multiple sclerosis research and victims (his mother suffered from this disease). He also enjoyed sky diving and scuba diving. He married Kathleen 'Kitty' Wellman, daughter of director William A. Wellman, on March 28, 1960, and fathered four daughters (Jamie, Kellie, Corie and Jolie). A devoted family man, his contracts often stipulated that he not be required to work past 6:00 pm. After his divorce from Wellman, he married second wife Carla in 1980 and continued to live on his two acre North Hollywood estate until his death.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Anonymous

Family (4)

Spouse Carla Deen Ankney (1980 - 8 July 1991)  (his death)
Kathleen 'Kitty' Wellman (28 March 1960 - 21 February 1979)  (divorced)  (4 children)
Children Jamie Allen Franciscus
Kellie Allen Franciscus
Korie Allen Franciscus
Jolie Allen Franciscus
Parents John Dennis Franciscus
Charlotte Loraine Grover
Relatives John Allen Franciscus (sibling)

Trade Mark (4)

Athletic and lean physique
Aquiline "Charlton Heston" features
Blond Hair
Playing Villains Later in his Career

Trivia (15)

Daughter born on 2 January 1975
Partners with Frederick H. Brogger in Omnibus Productions (founded in 1968).
Was the first choice to play Dr. Kildare in the 1961 TV series, but he was committed to another series (that never materialized) so the producers went with Richard Chamberlain.
In 1959 Norman Lear produced a pilot for a situation comedy called "Band of Gold" in which James and Suzanne Pleshette played a different couple each week. The program was considered too "experimental" and was never broadcast.
Ex-brother-in-law of William Wellman Jr..
A student under Jun Fan (Bruce) Lee, at his dojo of Chinese Gung Fu in California.
Twice portrayed President John F. Kennedy, or a character directly based on him: The Greek Tycoon (1978) and Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy (1981).
Ex-uncle-in-law of Cathy Wellman.
Was cast as Brent in Beneath the Planet of the Apes (1970) because of his resemblance to Charlton Heston, star of Planet of the Apes (1968).
Fathered four daughters with Kathleen 'Kitty' Wellman: Jamie (B. 1961), Kellie (B. 1963), Korie (B. 1973) and Jolie (B. 1975).
Ex-son-in-law of William A. Wellman.
On May 24, 1942 his father Capt. John Allen Franciscus was on a United Army Air Force Lockheed C40-D (Ser. No. 42-22249) taking him and other pilots from Bolling Field, District of Columbia, to Houlton Air Force Base, Maine. The pilots were to ferry bombers across the Atlantic. However, the Lockheed commuter plane crashed 5 miles northeast of Howe Brook, Maine, killing all on board.
He played an astronaut in both Marooned (1969) and Beneath the Planet of the Apes (1970).
A longtime smoker, the youthful looking Franciscus died of emphysema at age 57.
"I guess I've never seen a man spend that much time in front of a mirror before." (Sharyn Hillyer, "Splat From The Past #1481," interview featured on YouTube, regarding James Franciscus, whom she appeared with on the TV series, Mr. Novak, in 1963.).

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