Don Marshall (actor)
Marshall in Land of the Giants.
Donald James Marshall
May 2, 1936
San Diego, California, U.S.
|Died||October 30, 2016 (aged 80)|
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
|Alma mater||Los Angeles City College|
|Known for||Dan Erickson (Land of the Giants)|
|Relatives||Leola Williams (maternal grandmother)|
|Family||Douglas Marshall (twin brother)|
Marshall was born on May 2, 1936, to Alama Marshall in San Diego. He lived with his mother and his maternal grandmother, Leola Williams, his two older sisters, and his twin brother (Douglas). He graduated from San Diego High School in 1954. While studying engineering between 1956 and 1957, he was encouraged to try acting by a friend, Peter Bren. Marshall was still in the army at this time, but later studied acting at the Bob Gist Dramatic Workshop, while taking a course in theatre arts at Los Angeles City College. While at college, he was a pole vaulter on the track team.
Marshall's first professional role was in a 1962 Columbia Studios feature The Interns in an uncredited role. In 1964, he was in Shock Treatment, another uncredited role. Also in 1964, Marshall took the role of Chris Logan, playing opposite Nichelle Nichols in CBS Repertoire Workshop episode titled "Great Gettin' Up Mornin'", a made-for-TV-movie about an African-American family preparing their children for their first day at a racially integrated school in America's South. That same year, Nichols played Marshall's fiancée in a controversial episode of Gene Roddenberry's series The Lieutenant. In 1965, Marshall appeared in a pilot for a series Premiere in the episode "Braddock". In 1966, he appeared as recurring character Luke in Daktari.
Later in the 1960s he appeared in Roddenberry's next series, Star Trek portraying Lieutenant Boma in the episode "The Galileo Seven" (1967). Other TV series he appeared in were Tarzan (the series with Ron Ely), Dragnet 1967, and Ironside. In 1968, he appeared as Ted Neumann, the recurring love interest of Julia Baker, in the television series Julia, a series about an African-American widow raising her son on her own.
Land of the Giants
As a result of appearing in Premiere in the episode "Braddock", the actor met Irwin Allen, leading to Marshall gaining his role in Land of the Giants, in which he performed alongside Gary Conway, Don Matheson, Kurt Kasznar, Stefan Arngrim, Deanna Lund, and Heather Young. The series, created by Irwin Allen, featured Marshall as a competent African-American in a leading role. This was also a first for an African-American male in the 1960s to be featured so prominently in science fiction. The only other African-American actors to be in such a position in the 1960s were Nichelle Nichols, known for her role as Lt. Uhura in the TV series Star Trek, and Greg Morris as electronics expert Barney Collier in Mission: Impossible.
On set, the actors had to perform many of their own stunts, and here Marshall's athleticism was an asset; he credited his previous football, track, and pole vaulting work with enabling him to do many of the stunts required. In one of the episodes, "Ghost Town", while diving over a fire, Marshall actually dislocated his shoulder and the next day had to shoot new scenes with his arm in a sling. Another episode, "Giants and All That Jazz", which featured former world champion boxer Sugar Ray Robinson as Biff Bowers and Mike Mazurki as Loach, had Marshall teaching Biff Bowers how to play the trumpet. This episode, which Marshall called "Beautiful", seems to have been a favorite of his and made him want to act rather than follow or figure out what dialogue to use or say. He also claimed that actors had a better time on the set when Irwin Allen was not present; when he was, it was very different and people would get uptight.
In later years, Marshall wrote a script for a sequel to the series called Escape from a Giant Land. He hoped that it would be a big-screen production and would feature as many original cast members as possible.
Marshall had a role in the made-for-TV-movie The Reluctant Heroes, or The Egghead on Hill 656 (1971), a film that was directed by Robert Day. This war film was set in the Korean War with men under a newly commissioned lieutenant who are trapped on a hill surrounded by the enemy. His character as Pvt. Carver LeMoyne was subject to continual racial abuse by Cpl. Leroy Sprague (Warren Oates). The film also starred Ken Berry, Jim Hutton, Ralph Meeker, Cameron Mitchell, and Trini Lopez.
Marshall was subsequently cast in the role of Dr. Fred Williams in the science-fiction horror exploitation film The Thing with Two Heads (1972), which starred Ray Milland and Rosey Grier. This was a tale about a wealthy and racist white man who has his head transplanted onto the body of a black prisoner from death row. In 1974, he was cast in Uptown Saturday Night as Slim's Henchman. In 1976, he played the part of Captain Colter in an episode of The Bionic Woman, and in 1979 he was in a two-part episode of Buck Rogers in the 25th Century as Julio. From 1978 to 1980, Marshall was in three episodes of The Incredible Hulk.
In the 1980s, Marshall had few roles, appearing occasionally in episodes of Little House on the Prairie as Caleb Ledoux, as Doctor Jim Blair in Finder of Lost Loves, and as Senator Ed Lawrence in Capitol. In 1992, he played the concierge in Paul Schneider's made-for-TV-movie Highway Heartbreaker. Marshall often stated that he was proud of his work on Little House. In 2011, he was in Pioneers of Television as Pvt. Ernest Cameron in archival footage from the episode titled "To Set It Right" in 1964's The Lieutenant for PBS.
After he retired from acting, Marshall set up his own company called DJM Productions, Inc., which produced television commercials and documentary films. He was popular with Star Trek fans, as he was a Star Trek convention regular.
Personal life and death
He had one daughter and one son. Marshall provided consultation on matters connected with his work and with racial issues, and received an award for "Outstanding Achievement in his field as a Black Achiever in the United States". He died on October 30, 2016, at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. Veteran actress BarBara Luna had reported his death on Facebook.
|1968||Sergeant Ryker||Cpl. Jenks|
|1972||The Thing with Two Heads||Dr. Fred Williams||Science fiction film directed by Lee Frost.|
|1973||Terminal Island||A. J. Thomas||Action–drama thriller film directed by Stephanie Rothman.|
|1974||Uptown Saturday Night||Slim's Henchman #2||Action–comedy crime film directed by Sir Sidney Poitier.|
|1975||Hugo the Hippo|
|1963||Kraft Suspense Theatre||Cpl. Jenks||Episodes: |
|The Alfred Hitchcock Hour||Tom Jackson||Episode: "The Cadaver" (S 2:Ep 8)|
|1964||CBS Repertoire Workshop||Chris Logan||Episode: "Great Gettin' Up Mornin'" (S 1:Ep 1–Pilot)|
|The Lieutenant||Pvt. Ernest Cameron||Episode: "To Set It Right" (S 1:Ep 21)|
|Rawhide||Pvt. Goodlove||Episode: "Incident at Seven Fingers" (S 6:Ep 30)|
|The Alfred Hitchcock Hour||Officer Healy||Episode: "Isabel" (S 2: Ep 31)|
|Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre||Guest||Episode: "The Turncoat" (S 2:Ep 4)|
|1965||The Rogues||Chalo||Episode: "The Diamond-Studded Pie" (S 1:Ep 20)|
|The Alfred Hitchcock Hour||Joe Chandler||Episode: "Night Fever" (S 3:Ep 28)|
|Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre||Lathrop||Episode: "The War and Eric Kurtz" (S 2:Ep 17)|
|Ben Casey||Charles Stearns||Episode: "A Nightingale Named Nathan" (S 5:Ep 3)|
|Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre||Jerry Benton||Episode: "The Admiral" (S 3:Ep 9)|
|Mission: Impossible||The Police Officer||Episode: "The Ransom (S 1:Ep 8)|
|Twelve O'Clock High||Sgt. Earl Conklin||Epispde: "Graveyard" (S 3:Ep 15)|
|1967||Star Trek||Lt. Boma||Episode: "The Galileo Seven" (S 1:Ep 16)|
|Mr. Terrific||Athlete||Episode: "Stanley the Track Star" (S 1:Ep 14)|
|Tarzan||Kimini||Episode: "The Fanatics" (S 2: Ep 7)|
|Ironside||Joe Masterson||Episode: "Let My Brother Go"|
|Dragnet||Dave Roberts||Episode: "The Shooting" (S 1:Ep 11)|
|1968||Premiere||Gilmore||Episode: "Braddock" (S 1:Ep 4)|
|Dragnet||Off. Dave Evans||Episode: "Community Relations (DR-10)" (S 3:Ep 3)|
|Land of the Giants||Dan Erickson||Contract role|
|1970||Bewitched||Keith Wilson||Episode: "Sisters at Heart" (S 7:Ep 13)|
|1971||The Reluctant Heroes||Pvt. Carver LeMoyne||Made-for-TV-Movie and war film directed by Robert Day.|
|1975||Justin Sullivan||Episode: "The Execution" (S 2:Ep 18)|
|1976||Good Times||FBI Agent Lloyd||Episode: "The Investigation" (S 3:Ep 20)|
|The Bionic Woman||Captain Colter||Episode: "The Vega Influence" (S 2"Ep 9)|
|Rich Man, Poor Man Book II||Reverend|
|1977||Benny and Barney: Las Vegas Undercover||Detective Vincent||Made-for-TV-Movie directed by Ron Satlof.|
|The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries||Flight Engineer Eddy Baker||Episode: "The Strange Fate of Flight 608" (S 2: Ep 8)|
|1978||The Incredible Hulk||Lee||Episode: "The Hulk Breaks Las Vegas" (S 1:Ep 8)|
|Rescue from Gilligan's Island||FBI Man #1||Made-for-TV-Movie directed by Leslie H. Martinson.|
|1979||The Suicide's Wife||Richard Wilkes||Made-for-TV-Movie directed by John Newland.|
|The Incredible Hulk||Doctor||Episodes:|
|Buck Rogers in the 25th Century||Julio||Episodes:|
|1980||The Incredible Hulk||Man||Episode: "Deathmask" (S 3:Ep 20)|
|1981||Little House on the Prairie||Caleb Ledoux||Episode: "Dark Sage" (S 8:Ep 4)|
|1984||Capitol||Senator Ed Lawrence #1||Recurring|
|Finder of Lost Loves||Doctor Jim Blair||Episode: "Forgotten Melodies" (S 1:Ep 10)|
|1992||Highway Heartbreaker||Concierge||Made-for-TV-Movie directed by Paul Schneider.
|2011||Pioneers of Television||Pvt. Ernest Cameron||Archival footage from the episode titled "To Set It Right" in 1964's The Lieutenant.|
- Saperstein, Pat (November 1, 2016). "Don Marshall, Actor on 'Star Trek' and 'Land of the Giants,' Dies at 80". Variety. United States: Penske Media Corporation. Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- Gates, Anita (November 2, 2016). "Don Marshall, Who Made Casting History in 'Land of the Giants,' Is Dead at 80". The New York Times. New York City: The New York Times Company. Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- Gates, Anita (November 5, 2016). "Don Marshall, 80; made casting history in 'Land of the Giants'". The Boston Globe. Boston: Boston Globe Media Partners, LLC. Retrieved November 8, 2016.
- Don Marshall on Actordatabase.com
- Centeno, Stephanie (November 1, 2016). "Don Marshall, Actor on 'Land of the Giants,' Dies at 80". The Hollywood Reporter. United States: Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- "The Interns". Turner Classic Movies. Atlanta: Turner Broadcasting System (Time Warner). Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- "Shock Treatment". Turner Classic Movies. Atlanta: Turner Broadcasting System (Time Warner). Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- Johnson 1964, p. 60. sfn error: no target: CITEREFJohnson1964 (help)
- Johnson 1964, p. 66. sfn error: no target: CITEREFJohnson1964 (help)
- Fearn-Banks 2005, p. 326.
- Tv.com Land of the Giants Cast and Crew at TV.com
- MSN TV best and worst of 60s sci-fi Archived 2009-06-25 at the Wayback Machine
- Interview with Don Marshall on Actordatabase.com
- "The Reluctant Heroes". Turner Classic Movies. Atlanta: Turner Broadcasting System (Time Warner). Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- "The Thing with Two Heads". Turner Classic Movies. Atlanta: Turner Broadcasting System (Time Warner). Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- Tyner, Adam (June 22, 2015). "The Thing with Two Heads". DVD Talk. Internet Brands. Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- "Uptown Saturday Night". Turner Classic Movies. Atlanta: Turner Broadcasting System (Time Warner). Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- "Highway Heartbreaker". Turner Classic Movies. Atlanta: Turner Broadcasting System (Time Warner). Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- "Remembering TOS Guest Don Marshall, 1936-2016". StarTrek.com. CBS Television Studios. Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- "Planet Xpo". Planet Xpo. Retrieved August 18, 2009.
- "Sergeant Ryker". Turner Classic Movies. Atlanta: Turner Broadcasting System (Time Warner). Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- "The Thing with Two Heads". MGM Home Entertainment. MGM. ASIN B00005AUK3. Retrieved November 6, 2016.
- "Terminal Island". Turner Classic Movies. Atlanta: Turner Broadcasting System (Time Warner). Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- "Hugo the Hippo". Turner Classic Movies. Atlanta: Turner Broadcasting System (Time Warner). Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- "The Reluctant Heroes". Worldvision Enterprises. CBS Television Distribution. ASIN B00008T245. Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- "Benny and Barney: Las Vegas Undercover". Turner Classic Movies. Atlanta: Turner Broadcasting System (Time Warner). Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- Pegg 2002, p. 154.
- Roberts 2009, p. 507.
- "Rescue from Gilligan's Island". Turner Classic Movies. Atlanta: Turner Broadcasting System (Time Warner). Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- "Rescue from Gilligan's Island". Eclipse. The Criterion Collection. ASIN B00005KHJF. Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- "The Suicide's Wife". Turner Classic Movies. Atlanta: Turner Broadcasting System (Time Warner). Archived from the original on November 7, 2016. Retrieved November 7, 2016.
- John H. Johnson, ed. (1964). "Radio-TV". Jet. Chicago: Johnson Publishing Company. p. 60.
- John H. Johnson, ed. (1964). "Radio-TV". Jet. Chicago: Johnson Publishing Company. p. 66.
- Fearn-Banks, Kathleen (2005). Historical Dictionary of African-American Television (Historical Dictionaries of Literature and the Arts). Lanham, Maryland: Scarecrow Press. p. 326. ISBN 978-0810853355.
- Pegg, Robert (2002). Comical Co-Stars of Television: From Ed Norton to Kramer. New York City: McFarland & Company. p. 154. ISBN 978-0786413416.
- Roberts, Jerry (2009). Encyclopedia of Television Film Directors (1st ed.). Lanham, Maryland: Scarecrow Press. p. 507. ISBN 978-0786413416.