-By Warner Todd Huston
We all know the really famous actors that died in 2010. But there was also a bunch of actors that, when you see their face, you’ll remember… if, that is, you were a big TV and film watcher during the 1950s, 60s, 70s and/or 80s.
Check out the familiar faces of the following 25 actors. The faces are familiar even if the names are not.
(in order from date of death)
(Dec. 26, 1922-Feb. 2, 2010) Kates did stage, starred as Sigmund Freud on Star Trek, and starred on the soap The Guiding Light.
(Aug. 17, 1968-Feb. 14, 2010) Andrew made his mark as Kirk Cameron’s sidekick in the series Growing Pains. He was the son of Star Trek’s Walter Koenig (Chekov) and tragically committed suicide in Canada.
(June 10, 1926-Feb. 19, 2010) Most famous for his role in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, but he had a long career that stretched five decades.
(Dec. 31, 1938-Feb. 8, 2010) A staple on the soap The Edge of Night, as well as a character actor on such shows as Simon and Simon, 21 Jump Street, and Start: Trek: The Next Generation.
(April 3, 1927-Feb. 8, 2010) This guy was in many TV westerns such as The High Chaparral. He also was in many movies, Spartacus being one of them.
(Dec. 11, 1926-Feb. 26, 2010) Who could forget this guy’s face. He was all over TV in the 50s, 60s, and 70s. Get Smart, all sorts of westerns. He was a great working character actor.
(July 15, 1927-March 4, 2010) Her latest most well-known role as Mrs. Louder on The Drew Carey Show, but Martin was a staple on TV and movies for many decades.
David J. Steinberg
(1964-March 15, 2010) Achieved fame as a dwarf in the film Willow, Steinberg was also in such TV series as Charmed.
(Dec 17, 1945-Apr 7,2010) Played Ben Carrington in TVs Dynasty and in many films and British TV shows.
(September 2, 1915 – April 9, 2010) Meinhardt was one of the Wizard of Oz little folks.
(Oct. 15, 1934-April 12, 2010) Mr. Haskell was in such shows as The Outer Limits, and The Bionic Woman, and several movies.
(Jan. 16, 1938-April 15, 2010) Pataki might be best known as a Klingon on the original TV Star Trek, but he also did a lot of other work. Including a whole raft of horror movies in the 70s and early 80s before the film Halloween totally destroyed the horror genera.
(Sept. 29, 1931-May 28, 2010) This guy did all kinds of TV. He was on shows like The Incredible Hulk, and The Twilight Zone and many others.
(June 29, 1934-June 27, 2010) Was in Rebel Without a Cause, and later was a busy TV director.
(Jan 14, 1940, 1940-July 9, 2010) McGee was on TVs Cagney & Lacey as well as L.A. Law but she is better known for being in some of the best 70s blacksploitation films such as Blackula and Shaft in Africa.
(April 20, 1940-July 16, 2010) Gammon starred as the father in the late 90s series Nash Bridges and was a staple actor in many movies, many of them westerns.
(July 27, 1949-July 27, 2010) You’ll remember Mr. Chaykin from Dances With Wolves, and Cable’s Entourage. He always played very odd characters.
(April 15, 1952-Sept. 7, 2010) Speaking of odd characters, who could forget Shadix’s iconic, wacky role in Beetlejuice? He starred in many films as the wacky gay guy. Sadly, Shadix had suffered ill health recently and died as a result of falling from his wheelchair and striking his head on something.
(Dec. 10, 1923-Sept. 11, 2010) Gould was best known as Rhoda’s father in the 70s series The Mary Tyler Moore Show and Rhoda. He was also a popular character actor in movies such as The Sting, and Silent Movie.
(Feb. 15, 1914-Sept. 11, 2010) McCarthy’s work includes The Twilight Zone, The Colbys, and many movies such as Invasion of the Body Snatchers.
(Dec. 21, 1915-Sept. 29, 2010) Mantell was in a lot of 60s TV, like The Twilight Zone, but was also in the movies like Chinatown and Hitchcock’s The Birds. He was once nominated for an Oscar, too.
(Feb. 12, 1952-Oct. 14, 2010) The big star of the 1980s show Manimal, MacCorkindale was also in Fantasy Island, and Earth: Final Conflict.
(Feb. 23, 1921-Nov. 8, 2010) Powell was a main character in the old TV horror/soap Dark Shadows, but he was also in the films Three Days of the Condor, and the Sinatra film Contract on Cherry Street among others.
(Nov. 21, 1937-Nov. 23, 2010) A blond beauty that starred in many of the best Hammer horror flicks of the 1970s.
(Nov.. 23, 1945-Dec. 20, 2010) Landesberg was a comedian and was also one of the police detectives of TVs Barney Miller. He was most recently in the film Forgetting Sarah Marshall.
Oddly, February seemed like a bad month for character actors! Anyway, we baby boomers grew up watching these character actors and I thought they deserved a mention. It’s one thing to be a famous, world-renowned actor, but there are hundreds of actors like these that when we see them we remember them and say, “Oh, THAT guy!”