Mar. 31st, 1934
Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, California
Richard Chamberlain's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles
Guest TV Roles[none found]
George Richard Chamberlain is an American actor and singer, who became a teen idol in the title role of the television show Dr. Kildare (1961–1966). He subsequently appeared in several TV mini-series, such as Shōgun (1980) and The Thorn Birds (1983) and was the first to play Jason Bourne in the 1988 made-for-TV movie The Bourne Identity.
In 1961, Chamberlain gained widespread fame as the young intern, Dr. Kildare, in the NBC television series of the same name. Dr. Kildare ended in 1966, after which Chamberlain began performing on the theatre circuit. In 1966, he was cast opposite Mary Tyler Moore in the ill-fated Broadway musical Breakfast at Tiffany's. Decades later, he returned to Broadway in revivals of My Fair Lady and The Sound of Music.
At the end of the 1960s, Chamberlain spent a period of time in England where he played in repertory theatre and in the BBC's Portrait of a Lady adaptation, becoming recognized as a serious actor. In 1969, he starred opposite Katharine Hepburn in the film The Madwoman of Chaillot. While in England, he took vocal coaching and in 1969 performed the title role in Hamlet for the Birmingham Repertory Theatre, becoming the first American to play the role there since John Barrymore in 1925. He received excellent notices and reprised the role for television in 1970 for the Hallmark Hall of Fame.
In the 1970s, Chamberlain enjoyed success as a leading man in films: The Music Lovers (1970), Lady Caroline Lamb (1973), The Three Musketeers(1973), The Lady's Not for Burning (1974), The Towering Inferno (1974), and The Count of Monte Cristo (1975). In The Slipper and the Rose (1976), a musical version of the Cinderella story, co-starring Gemma Craven, he displayed his vocal talents. A television film, William Bast's The Man in the Iron Mask (1977), followed. The same year, he starred in Peter Weir's film The Last Wave.
Chamberlain later appeared in several popular television mini-series (earning him a nickname of "King of the Mini-Series"), including Centennial (1978–79), Shōgun(1980), and The Thorn Birds (1983) as Father Ralph de Bricassart with Rachel Ward and Barbara Stanwyck co-starring. In the 1980s, he appeared as leading man with King Solomon's Mines (1985), and played Jason Bourne/David Webb in the television film version of The Bourne Identity (1988).
- Attended Pomona College in California.
- Ranked #7 in TV Guide's list of "TV's 25 Greatest Teen Idols" (23 January 2005 issue).
- Long-time partner (over 25 years) of actor/director/producer 'Martin Rabbett' (qv). They live in Hawaii.
- Has served as honorary chair of the advisory board of Hawaii Public Television Foundation.