James Arness (born May 26, 1923 in Minneapolis, Minnesota as James Aurness) is an actor best known for portraying Marshal Matt Dillon on Gunsmoke for 20 years (though the length of time in a role is shared with Kelsey Grammer’s portrayal of Dr. Frasier Crane, Grammer played the same role on three different programs, Cheers, Frasier, and Wings), however, James Arness has played the part of Marshal Matt Dillon in 5 separate decades. 1955 to 1975 in the weekly series. Then in the decade of the 80's (1987) Return to Dodge, and 4 more made for tv Gunsmoke movies in the 90's giving him the distinct honor of playing the same character over 5 decades. Arness's parents were Rolf Cirkler Aurness and Ruth Duesler, descendants of German and Norwegian immigrants. Arness is the older brother of actor Peter Graves. He was the tallest actor ever to play a lead role, standing 6' 7" (2.01 m).
James Arness served in the United States Army during World War II, and was...
Created by dipity on Feb 7, 2008
Last updated: 03/11/10 at 02:05 PM
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Alias Jesse James (1959) is a Bob Hope western comedy movie that featured a number of movie and television frontiersmen (James Garner as Bret Maverick, Fess Parker as Davy Crockett, Gary Cooper, Roy Rogers, Hugh O'Brien as Wyatt Earp, James Arness as Marshal Matt Dillon, etc.) in their most readily recognizable outfits for brief cameo appearances. Many of these cameos are seldom seen today due to myriad legal problems with the rights, but Hope's clout at the time was so great that he managed to gather a dazzling array of screen cowboys for the original theatrical release. The outlaw T.J. 'Jesse' James (Wendell Corey) tries to kill insurance agent Milford Farnsworth (Bob Hope) who has been mistaken for him in order to collect on a big policy. ...,
The First Traveling Saleslady was a commercially unsuccessful 1956 movie starring Ginger Rogers, Carol Channing, James Arness, and a young Clint Eastwood (as Channing's beau, no less, whose height she equals when wearing heels) which was, Channing claimed, among the films that helped to close RKO Pictures....
Them! is a 1954 science fiction film about humanity's battle with a nest of giant mutant ants. One of the first of the "nuclear monster" movies, Them! was the biggest moneymaker for Warner Bros. Pictures in the year of its release. It starred James Whitmore, Edmund Gwenn, Joan Weldon and James Arness.The film was #72 on Bravo's 100 Scariest Movie Moments.The film begins with Peterson (Whitmore) investigating a string of mysterious attacks and killings in the New Mexico desert. The death of a vacationing FBI agent and most of his family (except for a hysterical little girl) brings in Graham (Arness), and the discovery of a strange set of tracks attracts the attention of the Medfords (Gwenn and Weldon), a father/daughter team of entomologists from Washington D.C., who theorize and then prove that the culprits are a nest of ants, mutated to giant size by nearby atomic testing.The authorities attack the nest with poison and kill the inhabitants, but not before two young queens hatch and...,
Island in The Sky is a 1953 film released through Warner Brothers. The film starred and was co-produced by John Wayne, directed by William A. Wellman and written by Ernest K. Gann who also wrote the novel on which the film was based.
The film follows a pilot and crew of a World War II-era C-47 Skytrain (the military version of the DC-3) who try to survive after a forced emergency landing in the uncharted wildlands near the Quebec-Labrador border. The pilot, Dooley, is a former airline pilot who like many others was pressed into duty hauling war supplies across the northern route to England. Icy weather forces the plane to land, and with the difficulties of navigating far from settled country, they can provide only an approximate position to rescuers. After finding a frozen lake for a landing field Dooley must keep his men alive in deadly conditions of extreme winter cold while waiting for rescue. Fellow airmen (Lloyd Nolan, James Arness, Andy Devine, Paul Fix) are determined to find...,
Hondo is a 1953 western film starring John Wayne. It is somewhat a retelling of Hamlet, in that Hondo kills a young boy's father, marries the boy's mother and becomes a father figure for the boy. The screenplay is based on the short story The Gift of Cochise by Louis L'Amour. The story tells the adventures of a cavalry scout and his relation with a frontier woman and her son at an isolated ranch. Geraldine Page played the girl and Ward Bond played Wayne's sidekick. The main story line tells of Hondo Lane, a cavalry rider, who becomes captured by the Apache Indians under Chief Vittorio. Angie Low, who had been living amongst the Apaches for years, comes to Hondo's aid at his hour of need. The script focuses on psychological descriptions and the drama of the Native Americans from New Mexico. The action scenes and the 3-D photography are also highpoints of the film.
The Australian John Farrow directed the movie.
Hondo is Al Bundy's (from Married... with Children) favorite movie
Big Jim McLain (Warner Brothers, 1952) was a John Wayne film starring Wayne and James Arness as HUAC investigators hunting down communists in the post-war Hawaii organized labor scene. The film has developed something of a cult following due to its now-campy red scare theme. Interestingly, the German version of the movie dispenses with the communist angle, making the villains drug dealers instead. This was achieved entirely through script changes and dubbing.
The Thing from Another World is a 1951 science fiction film which tells the story of an Air Force crew and scientists at a remote Arctic research outpost who fight a malevolent alien being. It stars Kenneth Tobey (Capt Patrick Hendry), Margaret Sheridan (Nikki Nicholson), Robert Cornthwaite (Dr. Arthur Carrington) and Douglas Spencer (Ned Scott). James Arness appeared as The Thing, unrecognizable in costume and makeup. Oddly, no players are named during the otherwise-complete opening credits; the only cast credit is at the end (this was somewhat unusual in the 1950s).
The movie was loosely adapted by Charles Lederer from the 1938 novella "Who Goes There?" by John W. Campbell, Jr. (originally published under the pseudonym Don A. Stuart). It was directed by Howard Hawks (uncredited) and Christian Nyby for Hawks' Winchester Pictures, which released it through RKO Radio Pictures Inc..
The film took advantage of the national feelings of the time to help enhance the horror elements of...,
The People Against O'Hara is a 1951 film noir based on Eleazar Lipsky's novel. The movie stars Spencer Tracy, Pat O'Brien, and James Arness, and is directed by John Sturges, who also directed the The Great Escape. James Curtayne (Tracy) has retired from law but he returns to defend John O'Hara (Arness) on a murder charge. Curtayne's drinking and rustiness result in O'Hara being found guilty, but Curtayne makes further efforts to prove him innocent. The People Against O'Hara at the Internet Movie Database...,
Battleground is a 1949 war film that tells the story of a platoon of the 3rd Battalion 327th Glider Infantry Regiment (formerly the 1st Battalion 401st GIR)101st Airborne Division trying to cope during the Battle of the Bulge at Bastogne, Belgium. It stars Van Johnson, John Hodiak, Ricardo Montalban, George Murphy, Marshall Thompson, Jerome Courtland, Don Taylor, Bruce Cowling, James Whitmore, Douglas Fowley, Leon Ames, and James Arness.The movie won two Academy Awards: for Best Cinematography, Black-and-White (Paul C. Vogel) and for Best Writing, Story and Screenplay (Robert Pirosh). Other nominations included Best Picture, Best Director (William A. Wellman), Best Film Editing (John D. Dunning), and Best Actor in a Supporting Role (James Whitmore).This film is notable for portraying American soldiers as vulnerable and human, as opposed to just inspirational and gung-ho. While there is no question concerning the courage and steadfastedness of the members of the squad, each has at...
James Arness was born