Tall, good-looking James Darren was a student of acting coach Stella Adler and made his name in the 1950s in a series of teenage-themed films. A better actor than most of his contemporary teenage heartthrobs, he nevertheless found it difficult to escape the teen-idol image he got in pictures like Gidget (1959) and Gidget Goes Hawaiian (1961). He also gained fame in the early and mid-1960s as a singer, with several hits to his credit, including "Goodbye Cruel World" and "Her Royal Majesty". His film work tapered off in the 1960s, but he did much TV work and had two hit series, The Time Tunnel (1966) in the 1960s and T.J. Hooker (1982) in the 1980s.
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