Charles Durning

Charles Durning

Age
89 (passed away Dec. 24th, 2012)
Birthday
Feb. 28th, 1923
Born in
Highland Falls, New York, USA
Height
5' 8

Charles Durning's Main TV Roles

Show Character(s)
Stephen King's Desperation TV Show
Stephen King's Desperation
Evening Shade TV Show
Evening Shade
First Monday TV Show
First Monday
Eye to Eye TV Show
Eye to Eye
Orleans TV Show
Orleans
The Cop and the Kid TV Show
The Cop and the Kid
 

Main Movie Roles

2009 - The Golden Boys
2008 - A Bunch of Amateurs
2008 - iMurders
2008 - Good Dick
2007 - Kinky Killers
2006 - Local Color
2006 - Jesus, Mary and Joey
2005 - The L.A. Riot Spectacular
2005 - Dirty Deeds
2000 - O Brother, Where Art Thou?
1996 - One Fine Day
1996 - Spy Hard
1995 - Home for the Holidays
1995 - The Last Supper
1994 - The Hudsucker Proxy
1994 - I.Q.
1991 - V.I. Warshawski
1990 - Dick Tracy
1988 - Étoile
1988 - Cop
1986 - Where the River Runs Black
1986 - Solarbabies
1986 - Tough Guys
1985 - The Man with One Red Shoe
1985 - Stick
1983 - To Be or Not to Be
1983 - Two of a Kind
1983 - Scarface
1982 - The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas
1982 - Tootsie
1981 - True Confessions
1981 - Sharky's Machine
1980 - The Final Countdown
1979 - When a Stranger Calls
1979 - Tilt
1979 - North Dallas Forty
1979 - The Muppet Movie
1978 - The Fury
1975 - Dog Day Afternoon
1975 - The Hindenburg
1975 - Breakheart Pass
1974 - The Front Page
1973 - Sisters
1973 - The Sting
1970 - Hi, Mom!

Guest TV Roles

Show Name
Characters Played
Ep Count
Michael Gavin
27
Narrator
20
Father Hubley
6
Francis Griffin (Voiced)
5
Assistant to the Boss
2
Psychiatrist
2
Eugene Brown
2
Stephen Donnell
2
A.J. Sheridan
2
Harry Deegan
1
[Complete List]



BIOGRAPHY:

Ex-pro boxer, WWII veteran, dance instructor and diversely talented stage & screen actor are all inclusions on the resume of this perpetually busy US actor who didn't get in front of the cameras until around the time of his fortieth birthday ! The stockily built Charles Durning is one of Hollywood's most dependable and sought after supporting actors who first got his start in guest appearances in early 1960's TV shows. He scored minor roles over the next decade until he really got noticed by film fans as the sneering, corrupt cop "Lt. Snyder" hassling street grifter 'Robert Redford' in the multi award winning mega-hit The Sting (1973). Durning was equally entertaining in the Billy Wilder production of The Front Page (1974), he supported screen tough guy Charles Bronson in the suspenseful western Breakheart Pass (1975) and featured as "Spermwhale Whalen" in the story of unorthodox police behavior in The Choirboys (1977).

The versatile Durning is equally adept at comedic roles and demonstrated his skills as "Doc Hopper" in The Muppet Movie (1979), a feisty football coach in North Dallas Forty (1979), a highly strung police officer berating maverick cop Burt Reynolds (I) in Sharky's Machine (1981), and a light footed, dancing Governor (alongside Burt Reynolds once more) in The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas (1982). Durning continued a regular on screen association with Burt Reynolds (I) appearing in several more feature films together and as "Dr. Harlan Elldridge" in the highly popular TV series "Evening Shade" (1990). On par with his multitude of feature film roles, Durning has always been in high demand on television and has guest starred in "Everybody Loves Raymond" (1996), "Monk" (2002) and "Rescue Me" (2004). Plus, he has appeared in the role of "Santa Claus" in five different telemovies!


TRIVIA:
  • Former professional boxer.
  • Won Broadway's 1990 Tony Award as Best Actor (Featured Role - Play) for portraying Big Daddy in a revival of 'Tennessee Williams' (qv)' "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof."
  • Served with the 1st Infantry Division in World War II. He landed at Omaha Beach on June 6, 1944 during the Normandy invasion. He was awarded several decorations, including the Combat Infantryman's Badge, Silver Star Medal, Bronze Star Medal, and three Purple Hearts.
  • Was trained in classical dance and was for a time in his early career, a dance instructor.
  • Despite the wounds he received in WWII (he was shot in the legs and hip by machine-gun fire), he went on to become a professional dancer and dance teacher. He taught at the 'Fred Astaire' (qv) studios and relied upon it when he couldn't find acting work.
  • Was one of a few survivors to the infamous massacre of American POWs by German SS troops at Malmedy, Belgium, during World War II. The surrendering engineering battalion, captured behind enemy lines when the main American forces retreated, were gathered together and brought to a large field. As the German guards backed away from the prisoners, machine guns that were hidden in trucks opened fire on them. Approximately 88 US soldiers died, a good number of them by a single shot at close range through the head, indicating that those who survived the initial volley were subsequently executed. Only about 20 of the group of approximately 100 managed to escape the massacre and make their way to American lines. The incident was re-created in _Battle of the Bulge (1965)_ (qv) starring 'Henry Fonda' (qv).
  • Was kicked out of the American Academy of Dramatic Art drama school because they thought he had no talent. Another famous thespian to be booted from the school was 'Jason Robards' (qv).
  • At age 21, he was the only member of his unit to survive the Omaha Beach "D-Day" invasion on June 6, 1944. He was wounded in the hip and legs three days after he got off the boat. He still carries the bullet in his hip.


Related sites for this celeb
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