Bill Lancaster

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For the pioneer aviator, see Bill Lancaster (aviator).
Bill Lancaster
Bill Lancaster 1967.JPG
In The Big Valley (1967)
Born William Henry Lancaster
(1947-11-17)November 17, 1947
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Died January 4, 1997(1997-01-04) (aged 49)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Occupation Screenwriter

William Henry "Bill" Lancaster (November 17, 1947[1] – January 4, 1997) was an American screenwriter and actor.


He was born in Los Angeles, California, the son of Burt Lancaster and Norma Anderson. He developed polio at an early age, leaving one of his legs shorter than the other.

Lancaster, a lookalike for his famous father at the time, guest-starred in an episode of the television series The Big Valley in 1967. In 1973, Lancaster played the role of "King", the boyfriend of a murdered college coed in The Midnight Man, a mystery film starring and co-directed by his father, released in 1974.

Lancaster's best known work is his adapted screenplay for John Carpenter's The Thing.[2] He also penned the original screenplays for The Bad News Bears films.[3]

He is featured in the documentary The Thing: Terror Takes Shape, found on the collector's edition DVD of The Thing. Lancaster states that he did not think Who Goes There? was a "great" story, but that he responded to the tale's sense of claustrophobia and paranoia. The documentary is dedicated to him because of his death shortly after it was filmed.

Lancaster was married to Kippie Kovacs, daughter of the comedian Ernie Kovacs.[4][5] They had one child, daughter Keigh Lancaster.[6]

Lancaster died at the age of 49, on his wife Kippie's 48th birthday, due to cardiac arrest.



External links[edit]

Bill Lancaster at the Internet Movie Database