Richard Jaeckel, Hollywood’s Man of Character


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About the Book

Character actor Richard Jaeckel worked five decades in Hollywood alongside the industry’s biggest names. Noted for tough-guy portrayals, he appeared in such classic westerns and war films as Sands of Iwo Jima (1949), The Gunfighter (1950), 3:10 to Yuma (1957), and The Dirty Dozen (1967). Bringing strength and integrity to his roles, he was nominated for a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for Sometimes a Great Notion (1970).

A World War II veteran and Merchant Marine, he was respected in the surfing and fitness communities for his ageless athleticism. His performance as Turk in Come Back, Little Sheba (1952) was groundbreaking for iron-pumping actors wanting to be taken seriously for their dramatic abilities. This revealing portrait of the life of a working character actor covers Jaeckel’s noteworthy career through each of his film and television appearances, from Guadalcanal Diary (1943) to Baywatch (1994). Recollections and behind the scenes stories from those he knew and worked with offer an in-depth look at the dedication and professionalism it takes to make it in Hollywood.

About the Author(s)

Gene Freese is a screenwriter living in Chandler, Arizona. He has written books on TV cowboy Jock Mahoney, character actor Richard Jaeckel, and Hollywood stunt performers from cinema’s Golden Age.

Bibliographic Details

Gene Freese
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 216
Bibliographic Info: 50 photos, filmography, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2016
pISBN: 978-1-4766-6210-7
eISBN: 978-1-4766-2249-1
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface   1
Introduction   3
1. Sunrise   5
2. Soldier Boy   15
3. The Actor   36
4. The Working Man   53
5. The TV Cowboy   70
6. Sailing Along   87
7. Riding the Wave   107
8. Choppy Surf   129
9. Back to the Beach   168
10. The Sun Sets   178
Filmography   185
Chapter Notes   189
Bibliography   191
Index   195

Book Reviews & Awards

“Freese relates the making of each and every Jaeckel film or TV show with dozens of comments from fellow actors and stuntmen, offering depth into one of the nicest men in the business”—Western Clippings.