Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Fred MacMurray

Fred MacMurray was born Fredrick Martin MacMurray on August 30, 1908 in Kankakee, Illinois and raised in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin.

Born to Maleta Martin and Frederick MacMurray (concert violinist). Fred MacMurray originally followed in his father's footsteps with a career in music, playing the saxophone and singing. Fred MacMurray played with the Chicago orchestra and later orchestras in Hollywood.

He played the vaudeville circuits and made his Broadway debut in 1930 in Three's A Crowd with Sydney Greenstreet, Clifton Webb and Libby Holman. He also appeared in the production of Roberta with Bob Hope in 1933.

Fred MacMurray's first movie was in 1929 in Girls Gone Wild where he was cast as an extra.

His first big movie break came when he appearred in The Gilded Lily (1935) where he starred opposite Claudette Colbert. He would go on to make six more movies with Claudette Colbert. These films include The Bride Comes Home (1935), Maid of Salem (1937), No Time For Love (1943), Pracitally Yours (1944), The Egg and I (1947), and Family Honeymoon (1949).

Carole Lombard was Fred MacMurray's another of his most popular leading ladies, appearing in four films together: Hands Across the Table (1935), The Princess Comes Home (1936), Swing High, Swing Low (1937) and True Confession (1937).

Fred MacMurray's most famous role was Walter Neff in Double Indemnity (1944) with Barbara Stanwyck, a role he initially turned down because of the dark side of the character.

Barbara Stanwyck and Fred MacMurray also appeared together in Remember the Night (1940), The Moonlighter (1953) and There's Always Tomorrow (1956).

Some of Fred MacMurray's other notable films include Alice Adams (1935), The Caine Mutiny (1954), The Shaggy Dog (1959) and The Apartment (1960).

Fred MacMurray's final film appearance was in The Swarm (1978) playing Mayor Clarence Tuttle.

To a younger generation, he is best known as Steven Douglas on the television series My Three Sons (1960-1972).

He was also the first choice to play the title role on TV's Perry Mason.

Fred MacMurray was married twice. He and his first wife, Lillian Lamont, were married on June 20, 1936, and they adopted two children. After Lillian dired on June 22, 1953 he later married actress June Haver, the couple adopted two more children.

After a longstanding bout with leukemia, MacMurray died of pneumonia on November 5, 1991.

Fred MacMurray was one of our most underrated actors, never receiving an Academy Award nomination. He appeared on Broadway, in more than 100 movies, and was on a successful television series, a career that spanned fifty years.

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