Sunday, November 25, 2012

R.I.P. Larry Hagman


Larry Hagman has died at the age of 81. What a great unforgettable actor, first playing an astronaut in the romantic sitcom "I Dream of Jeannie," then becoming one of the best TV villains of all time, sharp-witted and predatory, as J.R. Ewing of "Dallas." He will be missed.

From the LA Times
Larry Hagman, who as J.R. Ewing was famously shot but survived to finish 14 seasons and 357 episodes of "Dallas" and who rose again to lie and scheme in this year's successful revival, died Friday in Dallas, just down I-30 from Fort Worth, where he was born 81 years ago.

The son of musical-comedy star Mary Martin, Hagman worked on the New York stage through the 1950s, on and off-Broadway, then moved into movie and TV roles. But it was as the star of "I Dream of Jeannie" that he first became widely known, a good-looking, easygoing, dark-haired leading man in the mold of contemporaries like Jim Hutton and James Garner.


Huffington Post
Linda Gray, who played J.R.'s long-suffering wife, Sue Ellen, was with Hagman in Dallas when he died, the actress' spokesman, Jeffrey Lane, said in an email.

"Larry Hagman was my best friend for 35 years," Gray said in a statement. "He was the Pied Piper of life and brought joy to everyone he knew. He was creative, funny, loving and talented, and I will miss him enormously."

Hagman's mother was stage and movie star Mary Martin and he became a star himself in 1965 on "I Dream of Jeannie," a popular television sitcom in which he played Major Anthony Nelson, an astronaut who discovers a beautiful genie in a bottle.

"Dallas," which made its premiere on the CBS network in 1978, made Hagman a superstar. The show quickly became one of the network's top-rated programs, built an international following and inspired a spin-off, imitators and a revival in 2012.
"Dallas" was the night-time soap-opera story of a Texas family, fabulously wealthy from oil and cattle, and its plot brimmed with back-stabbing, double-dealing, family feuds, violence, adultery and other bad behavior.

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