Marjoe Gortner Poster


Jump to: Overview (3)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Spouse (2)  | Trivia (10)  | Personal Quotes (3)  | Salary (1)

Overview (3)

Born in Long Beach, California, USA
Birth NameHugh Marjoe Ross Gortner
Height 6' 2" (1.88 m)

Mini Bio (1)

In his early career as the 4-year-old "World's Youngest Ordained Minister," Hugh Marjoe Ross Gortner became a 'Miracle Child' extraordinaire. Preaching gospel from memory and performing faith healings, he drew capacity crowds as he barnstormed throughout the Bible Belt. Marjoe (the name a combination of "Mary" and "Joseph") eventually became disillusioned with what he considered a huge deception and withdrew from the scene entirely during his teen years. But his God-given talents for drawing an audience and public speaking were to be put to good use later on.

After singing with a rock band, he felt a compulsion to act. The amazing documentary Marjoe (1972), based on his life as a fake evangelist, introduced the public to a new and profoundly hypnotic performer. Marjoe's potent roles in the TV projects The Marcus-Nelson Murders (1973) and The Gun and the Pulpit (1974) capitalized on this off-centre flamboyance and showed off his obvious potential. The extremely positive reviews here helped catapult him into films. Unfortunately, most of them, promising as they must have seemed at the time -- Earthquake (1974), The Food of the Gods (1976), Viva Knievel! (1977), and When You Comin' Back, Red Ryder? (1979) -- went on to become dismal failures, and his quest for stardom never materialized. Marjoe stumbled through some more films in the 80s, but even he, with his charismatic powers, couldn't save himself from coming off badly in such drivel as Mausoleum (1983) and Hellhole (1985) and his career sank into oblivion. Though his work as an actor has grown faint with time, Marjoe will at the very least be remembered as the man who blew the whistle on evangelism. Who knows? Knowing Marjoe, there is still time for a second coming.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Gary Brumburgh / gr-home@pacbell.net

Spouse (2)

Candy Clark (1978 - 1979) ( divorced)
Carol J. Raney (1960 - 1968) ( divorced) ( 1 child)

Trivia (10)

Former child evangelist.
His name is a combination of "Mary" and "Joseph", a fact his parents exploited during the child evangelist period of his life.
As a child evangelist Gortner performed his first marriage ceremony at the age of 4.
Billed simply as Marjoe, hit #109 on Billboard's "Bubbling Under" singles chart in 1972 with "Lo and Behold" (Chelsea 0107).
Since childhood, he studied a number of musical instruments - drums, saxophone, organ, guitar, accordion and piano. Before hitting the road to film Marjoe (1972), he had a rock band in L.A. - and, on the strength of the movie's success and his musical ability, he recorded a solo album for RCA Records in 1973. Its title was Marjoe's description of himself: "Bad, But Not Evil".
Started out at a young age as as a preacher (evangelist) and, coincidentally, his last role (to date) was as a preacher in the film Wild Bill (1995).
He sponsors charity golf tournaments and others events [2005]
Considered an unorthodox choice at the time for the role of "Jody Joad" in Earthquake (1974), what won him the role was his persona in Marjoe (1972).
He is one of the Case Studies in "God is Not Great" by Christopher Hitchens, along with Joseph Smith.
The March 10, 1982, issue of Variety announced the film "The Glory Road", directed by Marjoe Gortner starring Gary Busey, Dabney Coleman, and Mary Crosby, started filming February 1, 1982, filming suspended February 8, 1982. The film went bankrupt and was never completed.

Personal Quotes (3)

When I was traveling (as a minister), I'd see someone who wanted to get saved in one of my meetings, and he was so open and bubbly in his desire to get the Holy Ghost. It was wonderful and very fresh, but four years later I'd return and that person might be a hard-nosed intolerant Christian because he had Christ. That's when the danger comes in. People want an experience. They want to feel good, and their lives can be helped by it. But then as you start moving into the operation of the thing, you get into controlling people and power and money.
I don't have any power. And neither do any of these other guys. Hundreds of people were healed at my crusades, but I know damn well it was nothing I was doing.
Tongues is something you learn [...] It is a releasing that you teach yourself. You are told by your peers, the church and the Bible -- if you accept it literally -- that the Holy Ghost spake in another tongue; and you become convinced that it is the ultimate expression of the spirit flowing through you. The first time maybe you'll just go dut-dut-dut-dut and that's about all that will get out. Then you'll hear other people and the next night you may go dut-dut-dut-UM-dut-dut-DEET-dut-dut and it gets a little better. The next thing you know, it's elahandosatelayeekcondelemosandreyaseya ... and it's a new language you've got down.

Salary (1)

Earthquake (1974) $6,666 .67 per week

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