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Morgan Woodward Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (3)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Spouse (1)  | Trade Mark (2)  | Trivia (26)  | Personal Quotes (1)

Overview (3)

Born in Fort Worth, Texas, USA
Died in Paso Robles, California, USA  (cancer)
Birth NameThomas Morgan Woodward

Mini Bio (1)

Craggy-faced, athletic veteran character actor who played hard-bitten or menacing types in numerous westerns and crime dramas. One of five brothers, Woodward grew up in Arlington, Texas. He had a keen interest in aviation early on and took flying lessons from 1941, getting his pilot's license and subsequently served in both World War II (Army Air Corps) and Korea (Military Air Transport Command). Woodward first acted at Arlington State College, majoring in music and drama. He appeared for a while with the Margo Jones Repertory Theatre '47 in Dallas and then went back to study for a degree in corporate finance at the University of Texas, graduating in 1948. At one time, he sang with a jazz band and as a member of a barber shop quartet as well as having a regular weekly gig as a talk show host on local radio. Possessed of a powerful bass-baritone voice, Woodward's ultimate ambition had been to sing for the Metropolitan Opera. That didn't pan out. Neither did his hope that moving to Hollywood in 1955 might open the door to a career in musicals. Instead, he successfully auditioned at Disney for The Great Locomotive Chase (1956), followed by a part in the western pioneer saga Westward Ho, the Wagons! (1956). His first big break was as co-star opposite Hugh O'Brian in The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp (1955), playing the role of Earp's deputy Shotgun Gibbs for four seasons. This effectively typecast him as a western genre actor with a record number of guest spots on Gunsmoke (1955) and Wagon Train (1957). Nonetheless, his most famous role was that of ""the man with no eyes", a sinister chain gang overseer in Cool Hand Luke (1967), distinguished by perpetually wearing reflective sunglasses. He also made two appearances on Star Trek: The Original Series (1966) (most famously as Simon Van Gelder, the first human with whom Spock 'mind melds') and played the shrewd Armani-suited oil tycoon Punk Anderson in 55 episodes of Dallas (1978).

Thomas Morgan Woodward was awarded the Golden Boot Award from the Hollywood Motion Picture and Television Fund in August 1988. In 2009, he became an inductee into the Hall of Great Western Performers at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum. Privately, he was a respected authority on Early American Aircraft. According to his website, his main hobby was "restoring, rebuilding and flying antique airplanes".

- IMDb Mini Biography By: I.S.Mowis

Spouse (1)

Enid Anne Loftis (18 November 1950 - 22 February 2019) (his death) (1 child)

Trade Mark (2)

Full head of (prematurely) snow white hair
Towering height

Trivia (26)

Attended the University of Texas in the late 1940s.
Has four brothers.
Father was a doctor.
Brother, Lee, was a much-loved weatherman on KOTV, Tulsa, with his puppet, King Lionel.
Brother of the Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity.
His uncle, Dr. S.A. Woodward, lived in the San Angelo, Texas area. One day, he was called to help in the birth of a male child. The family, not knowing what gender was expected, had not chosen a name, so in honor of the good doctor's service, they named him Woodward Ritter. Later, he would be known more widely as Tex Ritter.
His brother, Dr. Lewis Woodward, Ph.D., was a successful music professor at Modesto Junior College in Modesto, California. He worked at the school the same time as actor Jack Elam's half-brother (also a Ph.D.) did.
After graduating from college at the University of Texas, Woodward entered the University of Texas Law School in 1951. His legal studies were interrupted when he was recalled to active duty with the Air Force during the Korean War. He served in Korea with the Military Air Transport Command. After demobilization, he chose not to return to studying the law, choosing to became an actor, instead.
A 1969 article in "Newsweek" magazine, about screen "heavies" entitled "The Dirty Half Dozen," named Woodward as one of the six most in demand bad guys in television and motion pictures at the time.
Holds the record for having done more guest starring roles on the television series Gunsmoke (1955) (19) and Wagon Train (1957) (11) than any other actor.
In 1988, Woodward was presented with the "Golden Lariat Award" at the National Western Film Festival.
In 1994, the Texas Arts Council presented Morgan with its Lifetime Achievment in the Arts Award in his hometown of Arlington, Texas. The city also named a prominent street "Morgan Woodward Way".
In 1997, Woodward celebrated 50 years in show business and was given the "International Star Award" in Los Angeles, California.
In August 1988, he received the prestigious "Golden Boot Award" from the Hollywood Motion Picture and Television Fund. Other 1988 recipients were Roy Rogers, Virginia Mayo, Willie Nelson, Ann Rutherford and Burt Reynolds.
In August 1995, Woodward received the "Lifetime Achievement Award" for Western film acting from the "Wild West Film Festival" in Sonora, California.
In March 1990, Woodward's star was placed on the "Walk of Western Stars" at the William S. Hart Museum and Park in Santa Clarita, California.
Served as a pilot in the United States Army Air Force during World War II. He had been flying airplanes since age 16.
Woodward's chief hobby is restoring, rebuilding and flying antique airplanes. In aviation circles, he is recognized as an authority on Early American Aircraft and has received numerous awards for his restoration projects.
In July 1996, he was a guest at the Western Film Fair in Charlotte, North Carolina along with Tony Young, Patricia Blair, Gene Evans, Gregory Walcott, Adrian Booth, Roberta Shore, Tommy Kirk, Dale Berry, Bob Hoy (as Robert F. Hoy), Justin Tubb, and Neil Summers.
In 2005, he attended the 50th anniversary celebration of the start of Gunsmoke (1955) at an event in Dodge City, Kansas, also attended by the wife and son of James Arness, who was unable to travel.
Morgan was kind enough to attend a Walton's International Fan Club Reunion in Hollywood 1997, sharing his Walton experiences.
Morgan Woodward and his Dallas (1978) co-star Larry Hagman are both real-life natives of Fort Worth, Texas.
Received the Cowboy Spirit Award at the 16th Annual Bison Homes Festival of the West held in Phoenix for "embodying the integrity, strength of spirit, and moral character depicted by the American cowboy." [March 2006]
Now retired, Woodward divides his time between his ranch in Paso Robles, California and his home in Hollywood. [October 2006]
Was a service member during both World War II and the Korean War, serving in the United States Army Air Force in World War II, and in the US Air Force in the Korean War.
Upon his death, he was interred at Arlington Cemetery in Arlington, Tarrant County, Texas.

Personal Quotes (1)

"Recognition is a funny thing. I've been recognized for many roles and recently I had someone remember me from an old show I did more than 20 years ago. It was such an obscure role that it took me a few minutes to remember the part myself. But it's amazing what people will remember you for doing. I still get response about my role as Shotgun Gibbs on 'Wyatt Earp' and that ended in the early 60's." (on roles he's recognized in public for playing)

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