David McLean (actor)

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David McLean
Born Eugene Joseph Huth
(1922-05-19)May 19, 1922
Akron, Ohio. U.S.
Died October 12, 1995(1995-10-12) (aged 73)
Culver City, California, U.S.
Cause of death Lung cancer
Occupation Actor
Years active 1955-1978
Spouse(s) Lilo Diane Haig (?-1995) (his death) (1 child)
Children Mark McLean[1]

David McLean (born May 19, 1922, Akron, Ohio – d. October 12, 1995, Culver City, California) was an American film and television actor, best known for appearing in many Marlboro television and print advertisements beginning in the early 1960s.


McLean was born as Eugene Joseph Huth in Akron, Ohio. In addition to his commercial work for Marlboro cigarettes, McLean starred as the title character in the short-lived NBC western television series, Tate, which aired only in the summer of 1960. He also appeared in numerous television programs and feature films of the 1960s and 1970s, including a leading role in the 1961 movie X-15, the directorial debut of Richard Donner, and films such as The Strangler (1964), Nevada Smith (1966), Hughes and Harlow: Angels in Hell (1977), Kingdom of the Spiders (1977) and Deathsport (1978).

He guest-starred three times in the NBC television series Laramie: in the 1962 episodes "Beyond Justice", in the role of Steve Collier, a corrupt territorial politician, and in "A Grave For Cully Brown" as Cully Brown,[2] and as Marshal Branch McGary in the 1963 episode, "The Marshals." [3] In 1966, he appeared in an episode of the long-running NBC western The Virginian.[4] He guest-starred in the NBC western series Bonanza as well as on Daniel Boone.[5]

In 1963, McLean was cast as the gangster Frank MacErlane in the episode "Open Season" of the CBS anthology series, GE True, hosted by Jack Webb. In the story line, James Best portrays the courageous Wisconsin game warden Ernie Swift who faces the reprisal of the mob after he tickets MacErlane for illegal fishing.[6] That year he also appeared on Perry Mason as the title character and defendant Trevor Harris in "The Case of the Lawful Lazarus." As Lazarus in the Bible had been raised by Jesus from the dead, Harris reappeared from a ten-year absence after being declared legally dead.

He was also a fine woodworker and artist.

A lifelong smoker, McLean started suffering in 1985 from emphysema and had a tumor removed from a lung in 1994. His libertarian bent prevented him from pursuing a direct suit against Philip Morris, but he did become an anti-smoking advocate. At a meeting of stockholders of Philip Morris, the manufacturer of Marlboro, McLean requested that the company limit its advertising.[citation needed]


He died of lung cancer at the age of seventy-three in Culver City.[7]


In 1996, McLean's widow and son filed suit for wrongful death against Philip Morris, claiming that the firm encouraged or even required cigarette smoking, which caused his lung cancer. A fictitious version of these purported events were featured in the comic novel Thank You for Smoking.[citation needed]

See also[edit]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ http://www.nytimes.com/1995/10/20/obituaries/david-mclean-the-marlboro-man-73.html
  2. ^ [1] Classic TV Archive, U. S. Western series
  3. ^ Classic TV Archive, U. S. Western series
  4. ^ Profile at aol.com
  5. ^ [2] NY Times biography
  6. ^ "GE True". Classic Television Archive. Retrieved March 1, 2013. 
  7. ^ Profile at aol.com