Richard C. Sarafian
Richard C. Sarafian
Richard Caspar Sarafian
April 28, 1930
New York City, New York, U.S.
|Died||September 18, 2013 (aged 83)|
|Alma mater||New York University|
|Occupation||Director, writer, actor|
|Spouse(s)||Helen Joan Altman|
|Children||5, including Deran and Tedi|
Richard Caspar Sarafian (April 28, 1930 – September 18, 2013) was an American television and film director and actor. He compiled a versatile career that spanned over five decades as a director, actor, and writer. Sarafian is best known as the director of the 1971 film Vanishing Point.
Sarafian was born in New York City on April 28, 1930, to Armenian immigrants. He studied pre-law and pre-med at New York University and was a poor student, but changed over to studying film, at which he excelled. He left college to join the United States Army, in which he served as a reporter for an Army news service. While stationed in Kansas City, Missouri, during the Korean War (1950-1953) he met the future Hollywood director Robert Altman, and the two became friends.
Sarafian worked with Altman on industrial films and married Altman's sister, Helen Joan Altman. He also acted in a local play Altman directed. His television career began in the early 1960s in Kansas City as Altman's assistant. Sarafian soon began to direct television shows himself, and in 1963 scored one of his greatest successes as director of the "Living Doll" episode of The Twilight Zone. His first feature film was Andy in 1965. His greatest success as a feature film director came with Vanishing Point, which followed the action-packed adventures of a man driving a white Dodge Challenger from Denver, Colorado, to San Francisco, California, in 15 hours; critics disliked the movie but it became a cult hit.
Besides The Twilight Zone, Sarafian's directing credits on television included episodes of the television series Gunsmoke and Batman. In addition to Andy and Vanishing Point, he directed a number of feature films, including Run Wild, Run Free in 1969, Man in the Wilderness in 1971, and The Man Who Loved Cat Dancing in 1973. In his film acting career, he played a gangster in Bugsy in 1991 and a hitman in Bulworth in 1998, and in 2001 he voiced the animated God Beaver character in Dr. Dolittle 2. On television, he played a coffee shop owner as a regular member of the cast of the 1985-1986 CBS situation comedy Foley Square, starring Margaret Colin.
Sarafian and Helen Altman Sarafian married, divorced, and remarried; she died in 2011. They had five children, including actor Richard Sarafian Jr., actor/director Deran Sarafian, special effects expert Damon B. Sarafian, screenwriter Tedi Sarafian, and Catherine Sarafian.
|1956||The Magic Bond||Short film|
|1976||The Next Man||Gregory Zolnikov||Uncredited / Also director|
|1987||Street Justice||Taxi Driver||Also director|
|1989||To Die For||Bartender|
|1995||Don Juan DeMarco||Detective Sy Tobias|
|1995||The Crossing Guard||Sunny Ventura|
|1999||Blink of an Eye||Erlik|
|1999||Blue Streak||Uncle Lou|
|2000||Picking Up the Pieces||Wino|
|2001||Dr. Dolittle 2||God Beaver||Voice|
|2003||Masked and Anonymous||President|
|2007||Reeling||Teeth||Short film / Voice|
|1985–1986||Foley Square||Spiro Papadopolis||14 episodes|
|1986||Long Time Gone||Omar||Television film|
|1986||Liberty||Philbert Evans||Television film / Also director|
|1989||Wiseguy||Episode: "Le Lacrime D'Amore: Part 2"|
|1990||MacGyver||Caspar Kasabian||Episode: "Bitter Harvest"|
|1993||Sex, Love and Cold Hard Cash||Abe||Television film / Uncredited|
|1996||Miami Hustle||Henry Kronfeld||Television film|
|1996||Gotti||Paul Castellano||Television film|
|1997||Michael Hayes||Restaurant Owner||Episode: "Retribution"|
|1962||Terror at Black Falls||Also producer and writer|
|1965||Andy||Also producer and writer|
|1969||Run Wild, Run Free|
|1970||Fragment of Fear|
|1971||Man in the Wilderness|
|1973||The Man Who Loved Cat Dancing|
|1976||The Next Man||Also writer|
|1986||Eye of the Tiger|
|1990||Solar Crisis||Credited as Alan Smithee|
|1961||Maverick||Episode: "The Forbidden City"|
|1961||Bronco||Episode: "Guns of the Lawless"|
|1961||Surfside 6||Episode: "Count Seven!"|
|1961||The Roaring 20's||Episode: "Blondes Prefer Gentlemen"|
|1962–1963||The Dakotas||3 episodes|
|1962||Hawaiian Eye||2 episodes|
|1962–1963||The Gallant Men||9 episodes|
|1962–1963||77 Sunset Strip||3 episodes|
|1963||Redigo||Episode: "Lady War-Bonnet"|
|1963||The Great Adventure||Episode: "Six Wagons to the Sea"|
|1963–1965||Ben Casey||3 episodes|
|1963||The Twilight Zone||Episode: "Living Doll"|
|1963||Bonanza||Episode: "The Waiting Game"|
|1964||Dr. Kildare||Episode: "An Exchange of Gifts"|
|1965||Slattery's People||4 episodes|
|1965||The Wild Wild West||2 episodes|
|1965||Convoy||Episode: "Lady on the Rock"|
|1965||The Long, Hot Summer||Episode: "Home Is a Nameless Place"|
|1965||The Big Valley||Episode: "Winner Lose All"|
|1965||The Wackiest Ship in the Army||Episode: "The Stowaway"|
|1966||The Trials of O'Brien||Episode: "Alarums and Excursions"|
|1966–1968||I Spy||8 episodes|
|1966||The Girl from U.N.C.L.E.||Episode: "The Romany Lie Affair"|
|1967||Iron Horse||Episode: "Consignment, Betsy the Boiler"|
|1967||The Guns of Will Sonnett||3 episodes|
|1967||Cimarron Strip||Episode: "The Battle of Bloody Stones"|
|1967–1968||The Danny Thomas Hour||2 episodes|
|1968||Shadow on the Land||Television film|
|1975||One of Our Own||Television film|
|1975||Doctors' Hospital||Episode: "One of Our Own"|
|1977||The African Queen||Television film|
|1977||A Killing Affair||Television film|
|1979||Life in a Day||Television film|
|1979||Disaster on the Coastliner||Television film|
|1980||The Golden Moment: An Olympic Love Story||Television film|
|1981||The Gangster Chronicles||Television miniseries / 13 episodes|
|1981||Splendor in the Grass||Television film|
|1982||The Mississippi||Episode: "The Mississippi"|
|1990||Zorro||Episode: "Zorro: The Legend Continues" (Unaired TV pilot)|
- Chawkins, Steve (September 18, 2013). "Richard C. Sarafian dies at 83; directed cult film 'Vanishing Point'". Los Angeles Times.
- Patten, Dominic (1970-01-01). "Richard Sarafian Dies - Director Of Iconic Film 'Vanishing Point'". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 2013-09-18.
- Greenspun, Roger (1971-03-25). "Vanishing Point (1971) A Lot of Speed and Loads of Hair". The New York Times.
- Gilbey, Ryan (September 20, 2013). "Richard C Sarafian obituary". The Guardian. Retrieved March 17, 2018.
- Dyess-Nugent, Phil (September 18, 2013). "R.I.P. Richard C. Sarafian, director of Vanishing Point". The A.V. Club.
- Chawkins, Steve (September 23, 2013). "Richard C. Sarafian, Hollywood Director, Dies at 83". The Washington Post.
- McNeil, Alex, Total Television: The Comprehensive Guide to Programming From 1948 to the Present, New York: Penguin Books, 1996, p. 293.
- Brooks, Tim, and Earle Marsh, The Complete Directory to Prime-Time Network and Cable TV Shows, 1946-Present, Sixth Edition, New York: Ballantine Books, 1995, ISBN 0-345-39736-3, p. 364.
- "Richard C Sarafian". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-03-03.
- "Richard C. Sarafian, Director of 'Vanishing Point,' Dies at 83". The New York Times - Art. September 22, 2013. Retrieved October 14, 2013.