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|Born||Dwayne Bernard Hickman
May 18, 1934
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
|Spouse(s)||Carol Christensen (1963–72; divorced); 1 child
Joanne Purtle Papile (1977–81; divorced)
Joan Roberts (1983—present); 1 child
|Children||Albert Thomas Hickman
John Christensen Hickman
|Relatives||Darryl Hickman (brother)|
Dwayne Bernard Hickman (born May 18, 1934) is an American former actor and television executive at CBS.
The normally brown-haired Hickman portrayed Chuck MacDonald, Bob Collins's (played by Bob Cummings) crazy teenaged nephew, on the 1950s NBC series The Bob Cummings Show (a.k.a. Love That Bob in reruns), and the blond title character in CBS's The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis.
Life and career
Born in Los Angeles, California, and raised Catholic, Hickman is the younger brother of child actor Darryl Hickman. He graduated from Cathedral High School in 1952 and intended to become a Passionist priest, but ultimately chose not to do so and attended Loyola University.
An early screen appearance was in the 1942 Our Gang comedy Melodies Old and New. In 1946 Hickman played young Chase in the movie The Secret Heart which starred Claudette Colbert, Walter Pidgeon, Lionel Barrymore and June Allyson. Dwayne and Darryl co-starred in an early episode of the syndicated military drama Men of Annapolis, filmed at the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland. As a teen, he and Darryl guest-starred in a 1950 episode of The Lone Ranger titled Two Gold Lockets, and in 1955 he appeared in another episode titled "Sunstroke Mesa". He gained wide notice as "Chuck" on The Bob Cummings Show from 1955-59. At the time, he was studying at Loyola. Hickman was one of the first stars to have a breakout character in the series.
Hickman considered Cummings a childhood television hero and has said that Cummings taught him everything he knows about acting. He worked with and was friends with Cummings throughout five seasons. While still on the Bob Cummings Show in 1958, Hickman was cast as the lead of The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis, which aired on CBS from 1959–63. Although at the show's debut the Dobie character was a teenager in high school, Hickman was then 25 years old.
After playing Dobie for four years (with fellow former Loyola student Bob Denver as his sidekick, Maynard G. Krebs), Hickman found himself stereotyped as a "youngster" when he was too old for such roles. He appeared in minor beach films and made an unsuccessful television pilot portraying a schoolteacher.
On June 23, 1960, Hickman appeared on NBC's The Ford Show, Starring Tennessee Ernie Ford. He and Annette Funicello appeared together in an episode of ABC's circus drama The Greatest Show on Earth, starring Jack Palance. In 1965, Hickman appeared in the comedy film Cat Ballou with Jane Fonda and Lee Marvin and in the film Dr. Goldfoot and the Bikini Machine. In the 1965-1966 television season, he appeared as a guest star on the episode "Run Sheep Run" on ABC's Combat! as a soldier who froze during an attack by a German machine gun nest which resulted in the death of a fellow GI.
Hickman found his future in entertainment behind the scenes, being involved in production roles. From 1977 to 1988, Hickman served as a programming executive at CBS. He worked as a director on various television series, including Designing Women and Head of the Class. He reprised his role of Dobie in two television reunion broadcasts, the one-shot pilot Whatever Happened to Dobie Gillis (1977) and the TV movie Bring Me the Head of Dobie Gillis (1988). His autobiography is titled Forever Dobie.