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William Daniels Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (3)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Spouse (1)  | Trade Mark (4)  | Trivia (48)

Overview (3)

Born in Brooklyn, New York, USA
Nickname Bill
Height 5' 7" (1.7 m)

Mini Bio (1)

William Daniels was born on March 31, 1927 in Brooklyn, New York, USA. He is an actor, known for St. Elsewhere (1982), The Graduate (1967) and The Blue Lagoon (1980). He has been married to Bonnie Bartlett since June 30, 1951. They have two children.

Spouse (1)

Bonnie Bartlett (30 June 1951 - present) ( 2 children)

Trade Mark (4)

Perhaps best known for his roles as Dr. Mark Craig on St. Elsewhere (1982) and Mr. George Feeny on Boy Meets World (1993) and Girl Meets World (2014).
Moustache
His nasal voice
Boston Brahmin accent

Trivia (48)

He and his wife, actress Bonnie Bartlett, won Emmys for their portrayals of a married couple, Dr. and Mrs. Mark Craig, on the cult TV series St. Elsewhere (1982) in 1982.
As a child, he was part of the Daniels Family song-and-dance troupe that traveled in and around the state of New York. His entire family appeared on one of the first experimental TV broadcasts in 1941.
Nominated for a Tony as Supporting Actor in a Musical for his lead role of John Adams in the 1969 musical "1776." He could not be nominated for lead actor because he did not then have star billing (i.e., above the title). Adams is clearly the lead role in 1776 (1972), so Daniels declined the nomination.
1949 graduate of Northwestern University.
Elected president of the Screen Actors Guild, upsetting incumbent Richard Masur, as well as candidate Angel Tompkins, who conjoined her two names to call herself "Angeltompkins" so she could be listed first on the ballot(!) The SAG president serves a two-year term. [November 1999]
Worked conscientiously to lose the Brooklyn accent he grew up with, so that he could obtain a wider range of roles. His adopted accent is close to the Boston dialect he used as Dr. Mark Craig on St. Elsewhere (1982) and Mr. George Feeny on Boy Meets World (1993).
One episode of St. Elsewhere (1982) called for Dr. and Mrs. Craig to visit Philadelphia. Inspired by returning to Independence Square, he sang a few lines of the song "Sit Down, John" from 1776 (1972). The moment was included in the episode.
Is a member of the Sigma Nu fraternity.
Often plays members of the famous Adams family of early American history. Has played John Adams (in the feature film 1776 (1972), the television mini-series The Rebels (1979), and the original play of "1776" on Broadway beginning in March 1969) and his son John Quincy Adams (in the television mini-series The Adams Chronicles (1976)).as well as their cousin Samuel Adams (in the television mini-series The Bastard (1978)).
While performing on both St. Elsewhere (1982) and Knight Rider (1982) in the 1980s, Daniels made goodwill visits to children's hospitals. He discovered that not many children were thrilled to meet an actor who played a doctor, but the fact that he voiced the talking car KITT always appealed to them, so he shifted emphasis during his visits. He entertained the children with KITT-styled phrases, and answered their questions about "Knight Rider" while hardly mentioning his other, larger acting role.
Played George Feeny, who was the principal and a teacher at John Adams High School on the TV show Boy Meets World (1993). This is yet another John Adams connection for Daniels, who has portrayed him many times.
In an episode of Boy Meets World (1993), Daniels's character, George Feeny, is congratulating Cory on the quality of his film project. Cory then asks, "You think it's a great film?" George responds, "No, I think The Graduate is a great film," referring to his earlier role in The Graduate (1967).
The characters that Daniels and his real-life wife, Bonnie Bartlett, played in Boy Meets World (1993) married each other in an episode of that series, just as they are in real life.
Portrayed John Adams in the original Broadway stage version of 1776 and reprised his role in the movie 1776 (1972).
Played Dustin Hoffman's father in The Graduate (1967), but in reality is only 10 years older than Hoffman.
In addition to portraying John Adams in 1776 (1972), he portrayed his son John Quincy Adams in The Adams Chronicles (1976).
Lives in Studio City, California. [May 2002]
He has played the same character (George Feeny) on three different series: Boy Meets World (1993), Maybe This Time (1995) and Girl Meets World (2014).
He is the son of Irene (Bulger) and David Dryden Daniels.
He appeared in 129 of the 137 episodes of St. Elsewhere (1982), more than anyone else.
Best known by the public for his starring role as Dr. Mark Craig on St. Elsewhere (1982) and for his role as George Feeny on Boy Meets World (1993) and Girl Meets World (2014).
Acting mentor and friend of: Ed Begley Jr., David Morse and Howie Mandel.
Alongside fellow actor Norman Lloyd, Dick Van Dyke, Ernest Borgnine, Mickey Rooney, Betty White, Angela Lansbury, Christopher Lee, Edward Asner, Adam West, William Shatner, Marla Gibbs, Larry Hagman, Florence Henderson Shirley Jones, Hal Linden and Alan Alda, Daniels is one of the few actors in Hollywood who lived into their 80s and/or 90s without ever either retiring from acting or having stopped getting work.
Started dancing when he was 4.
Was born in the apartment that didn't have any tub nor shower.
Met his future wife Bonnie Bartlett at Northwestern University.
Met Bruce Paltrow and Blythe Danner while working on 1776 (1972), in 1972, a decade later, he would work with them on St. Elsewhere (1982).
His St. Elsewhere (1982) co-star, Ed Begley Jr., would be the total opposite of him. Coming from film, Begley came in to work late, had trouble learning his lines, while Daniels learned a lot of lines, coming from the theater.
His mother, Irene Daniels, was a telephone operator, and his father, David Daniels, was a bricklayer.
Long lives run in his family.
On St. Elsewhere (1982), his character was originally from Boston, in real-life, he has the Boston accent, since he was 15.
Prior to starring on St. Elsewhere (1982), producer Glen A. Larson asked Daniels if he would read for the voice of a car in another series, which was Knight Rider (1982). With memories of the infamous failure My Mother the Car (1965), he resisted, but Larson insisted it was a computer, not a car, talking, and coaxed Daniels into a small recording studio at Universal.
Until the 1980s, he was a heavy smoker.
Due to his popularity on St. Elsewhere (1982), Daniels was also invited to speak at medical school graduations, esp. at Northwestern, his Alma Mater. He turned each and every one of them down, because he wasn't a doctor, in real-life.
On the St. Elsewhere (1982) set, along with Ed Flanders and Norman Lloyd, Daniels had to pronounce medical terms using the medical dictionary. He also had to make a speech, before performing surgery.
In 1936, at almost 9, Daniels began performing on children's radio, for the first time, with one of his sisters.
Before he was a successful actor, he began his career in 1945, aged 18, he was drafted in Italy, where he served as an Army radio station disc jockey.
Has known Ed Begley Jr.'s family, when he was very young, years before he co-starred on St. Elsewhere (1982) with him.
Best friends of Ed Flanders and Norman Lloyd.
He got one of the lead roles as Dr. Mark Craig on St. Elsewhere (1982), primarily because of his longtime friendship with Bruce Paltrow and his wife Blythe Danner.
Lives not too far away from his ex-St. Elsewhere (1982) co-star, Ed Begley Jr..
He is most widely known to be a social butterfly.
His classmates at Northwestern included Paul Lynde, Georgann Johnson and Bonnie Bartlett.
He endorsed Senator Bernie Sanders in the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election.
He recorded his lines as K.I.T.T. in Knight Rider (1982) on his days off from St. Elsewhere (1982).
As of 2018, he has appeared in two films nominated for Best Picture Academy Award: A Thousand Clowns (1965) and The Graduate (1967).
His sister is Carol "Termite" Daniels, who was a child radio star in the 1940s.

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