Telly Savalas in 1973
January 21, 1922
Garden City, New York, U.S.
|Died||January 22, 1994 (aged 72)|
|Resting place||Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Los Angeles, California|
|Alma mater||Columbia University|
(m. 1948; div. 1957)
(m. 1960; div. 1974)
(m. 1984; his death 1994)
|Partner(s)||Sally Adams (1969–1978)|
|Children||6 including Ariana Savalas|
Aristotelis "Telly" Savalas (Greek: Αριστοτέλης Σαβάλας; January 21, 1922 – January 22, 1994) was a Greek American film and television actor and singer whose career spanned four decades. Noted for his resonant, deep voice and bald head, Savalas is perhaps best known for his role as Lt. Theo Kojak in the police-drama series, Kojak (1973–1978). He also released the one-hit wonder song "If", which became a UK number-one single in 1975.
Savalas' movie roles include Birdman of Alcatraz (1962) — where he was nominated for the Academy Award and Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor — The Greatest Story Ever Told, Battle of the Bulge (both 1965), The Dirty Dozen (1967), as super villain Ernst Stavro Blofeld in the James Bond movie On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969), Kelly's Heroes (1970) and Escape to Athena (1979).
- 1 Early life
- 2 Early acting appearances
- 3 Going bald and continued success
- 4 Later career
- 5 Other career achievements
- 6 Personal life
- 7 Deaths of relatives and later years
- 8 Death
- 9 Filmography
- 10 See also
- 11 References
- 12 External links
The second of five children, Telly Savalas was born Aristotelis Savalas on January 21, 1922, in Garden City, New York, to Greek American parents Christina (née Kapsalis; 1904–88), a New York City artist who was a native of Sparta, and Nick Savalas [Tsavalas] (c. 1883–1948), a Greek restaurant owner. One set of grandparents originated from Ierakas, Greece, in the Peloponnese. Savalas and his brother Gus sold newspapers and shined shoes to help support the family.
Savalas initially only spoke Greek when he entered grade school, but learned English. He attended Cobbett Junior High School in Lynn, Massachusetts. He won a spelling bee there in 1934, though through an oversight he did not receive his prize until 1991, when the Boston Herald newspaper and local school principal decided to award it to him.
Savalas entered Sewanhaka High School in Floral Park, New York, and graduated in 1940. After graduation from high school he worked as a lifeguard, but on one occasion was unsuccessful at rescuing a man from drowning, an event that would haunt Savalas for the remainder of his life. When he entered Columbia University School of General Studies, Savalas took courses including English language, radio and psychology, graduating in 1946.
Telly entered Columbia College but was drafted. Upon returning, the college would not take him back because he was too old. (To this day Columbia College has many underaged students from New York's elite high schools). So he had to graduate from the adult college, General Studies. He was playfully populist about this, claiming to be a "Columbia College dropout". Savalas also served three years (1943–1946) in the U.S. Army during World War II, in which he received a Purple Heart.
Get his Hellenic Times interview during the Dukakis campaign, when Savalas helped organize the Pan-Gregorians to help Dukakis as a Diner co-op. He said he majored in psychology and participated in a church play as a bald judge, from where Hollywood recruited him. He said State Dept, didn't mention VOA.
In 1950, Savalas hosted a radio show called "The Coffeehouse in New York City".
Savalas began as an executive director and then senior director of the news special events at ABC. He then became an executive producer for the Gillette Cavalcade of Sports, where he gave Howard Cosell his first job in television.
Early acting appearances
Savalas did not consider acting as a career until asked if he could recommend an actor who could do a European accent. He did but as the friend in question could not go, Savalas himself went to cover for his friend and ended up being cast on "And Bring Home a Baby", an episode of Armstrong Circle Theatre in January 1958. He appeared on two more episodes of the series in 1959 and 1960, one, acting alongside a young Sydney Pollack. He was also in a version of The Iceman Cometh.
Savalas quickly became in much demand as a guest star on TV shows, appearing in Sunday Showcase, Diagnosis: Unknown, Dow Hour of Great Mysteries (an adaptation of The Cat and the Canary), Naked City (alongside Claude Rains), The Witness (playing Lucky Luciano in one episode and Al Capone in another), The United States Steel Hour, and The Aquanauts. He was a regular on the short-lived NBC series Acapulco (1961) with Ralph Taeger and James Coburn.
Savalas made his film debut in Mad Dog Coll (1961), playing a cop. His work had impressed fellow actor Burt Lancaster, who arranged for Savalas to be cast in the John Frankenheimer directed The Young Savages (also 1961 and again playing a cop). Pollack worked on the film as an acting coach.
In one of his most acclaimed performances, Savalas reunited with Lancaster and Frankenheimer for Birdman of Alcatraz (1962), where he was nominated for the Academy Award and Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor. The same year, he appeared as a private detective in Cape Fear (directed by J. Lee Thompson whom Savalas would work with in future films), and The Interns, reprising his role from the latter film in The New Interns (1964).
Savalas also guest starred in a number of TV series during the decade including The New Breed, The Detectives, Ben Casey, The Twilight Zone (the episode "Living Doll") and Arrest and Trial among others.
Going bald and continued success
Savalas shaved his head to play Pontius Pilate in The Greatest Story Ever Told (1965) and kept his head shaven for the rest of his life. He reunited with J. Lee Thompson in John Goldfarb, Please Come Home! (1965), and was one of many names in Genghis Khan (also 1965).
He was part of an all-star cast in The Dirty Dozen (1967), playing Archer Maggott (the worst of the dozen), in a role Jack Palance turned down. He reunited with Burt Lancaster and Sydney Pollack in the Western The Scalphunters (1968), and also featured in the comedy Buona Sera, Mrs. Campbell (also 1968) — noted as one of his favourite roles — and the all-star action movie Mackenna's Gold (1969), his third film for J. Lee Thompson. Savalas attributed his success to "his complete ability to be himself."
After continued supporting roles in films such as The Man from the Diners' Club, Love Is a Ball and Johnny Cool (all 1963), Savalas' first leading role in film was in the British crime comedy Crooks and Coronets (1969). The same year he appeared in the James Bond movie On Her Majesty's Secret Service, playing Ernst Stavro Blofeld. He continued to appear in films during the 1970s including Kelly's Heroes (1970) (with Clint Eastwood), Clay Pigeon (1971), and several European features such as Violent City (1970) (with Charles Bronson), A Town Called Bastard (1971), Horror Express (with Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee), L'assassino . . . è al telefono, A Reason to Live, a Reason to Die (all 1972), and Senza ragione (1973). He reunited with Lee in the 1976 thriller Killer Force, and also appeared in Peter Hyams' Capricorn One (1978).
"I had worked my way up to star billing," he later said, "when the bottom dropped out of the movie business. I could have stayed in Europe and made Italian movies but I discovered the big difference between an Italian and American movie is that in the American movie you get paid."
Kojak (1973–1978; 1985–1990)
Kojak was a bald New York City detective with a fondness for lollipops and whose tagline was "Who loves ya, baby?" (He also liked to say, "Everybody should have a little Greek in them.") Although the lollipop gimmick was added in order to indulge his sweet tooth, Savalas also smoked heavily onscreen—cigarettes, cigarillos and cigars—throughout the first season's episodes. The lollipops had apparently given him three cavities, and were part of an (unsuccessful) effort by Kojak (and Savalas himself) to curb his smoking. The critic Clive James explained the lead actor's appeal as Kojak: "Telly Savalas can make bad slang sound like good slang and good slang sound like lyric poetry. It isn't what he is, so much as the way he talks, that gets you tuning in."
David Shipman later wrote: "Kojak was sympathetic to outcasts and ruthless with social predators. The show maintained a high quality to the end, mixing tension with some laughs and always anxious to tackle civic issues, one of its raisons d’etre in the first place. It was required viewing in Britain every Saturday evening for eight years. To almost everyone everywhere Kojak means Savalas and vice versa, but to Savalas himself the series was merely an interval, albeit a long one, in a distinguished career."
Kojak aired on CBS for five seasons from October 24, 1973 until March 18, 1978 with 118 episodes produced. The role won Savalas an Emmy and two Golden Globes for Best Actor in a Drama Series. Co-stars on the show included Savalas' younger brother George as Detective Stavros – a sensitive, wild-haired, quiet, comedic foil to Kojak's street-wise humor in an otherwise dark dramatic series – Kevin Dobson as Kojak's trusted young partner, Det. Bobby Crocker, whose on-screen chemistry with Savalas was a success story of 1970s television, and Dan Frazer as Captain Frank McNeil.
Due to a decline in ratings, the series was canceled by CBS in 1978; Savalas and Frazer were the only actors to appear in all 118 episodes. Savalas was unhappy about the show's demise, but got the chance to reprise the Kojak persona in several television movies, starting in 1985. The first film, subtitled The Belarus File and broadcast in February 1985, reunited Savalas with several of his co-stars from the series: younger brother George, Dan Frazer, Mark Russell (Det. Saperstein) and Vince Conti (Det. Rizzo); this marked those actors' final appearances in the Kojak franchise.
A further six Kojak TV movies were produced, titled The Price of Justice (1987), Ariana, Fatal Flaw (both 1989), Flowers for Matty, It's Always Something – with Kevin Dobson reprising his role of Bobby Crocker, now an Assistant District Attorney – and None So Blind (all 1990).
Savalas was part of an all-star cast in the movies Escape to Athena, Beyond the Poseidon Adventure (both 1979) and Cannonball Run II (1984), and continued to appear in a number of film and television guest roles during the 1980s, including Border Cop (1980) and Faceless (1988), the series Tales of the Unexpected (1981), and two episodes each of The Love Boat (1985) and The Equalizer (1987): the latter series was produced by James McAdams, who had also produced Kojak.
In 1992, he appeared in three episodes of the TV series The Commish (his son-in-law was one of the producers). This was Savalas' final television role. He would appear in two further feature films before his death, Mind Twister (1993) and the posthumous release Backfire! (1995).
Other career achievements
As a singer, Savalas had some chart success. His spoken word version of Bread's "If" produced by Snuff Garrett reached #1 in both the UK and Ireland in March 1975, and his version of Don Williams's "Some Broken Hearts Never Mend" topped the charts in Switzerland in February 1981. He worked with composer and producer John Cacavas on many albums, including Telly (1974) and Who Loves Ya, Baby (1976).
In the late 1970s Savalas narrated three UK travelogues titled Telly Savalas Looks at Portsmouth, Telly Savalas Looks at Aberdeen, and Telly Savalas Looks at Birmingham. They were produced by Harold Baim and were examples of quota quickies, which were then part of a requirement that cinemas in the United Kingdom show a set percentage of British produced films. In the 1980s and early 1990s, Savalas appeared in commercials for the Players' Club Gold Card. In 1982, along with Bob Hope and Linda Evans, he participated in the "world premiere" television ad introducing Diet Coke to Americans. On October 28, 1987, Savalas hosted Return to the Titanic Live, a two-hour television special broadcast from Cité des Sciences et de l'Industrie in Paris. He also hosted the 1989 video UFOs and Channeling.
Savalas was married three times. In 1948 after his father's death from bladder cancer, Savalas married his college sweetheart, Katherine Nicolaides. Daughter Christina, named after his mother, was born in 1950. In 1957 Katherine filed for divorce. She urged him to move back to his mother's house during that same year. While Savalas was going broke, he founded the Garden City Theater Center in his native Garden City. While working there he met Marilyn Gardner, a theater teacher. They married in 1960. Marilyn gave birth to daughter Penelope in 1961. A second daughter, Candace, was born in 1963. They divorced in 1974, after a long separation.
In January 1969, while working on the movie On Her Majesty's Secret Service, Savalas met actress Sally Adams (billed as Dani Sheridan, one of Blofeld's "Angels of Death"), a small-time actress 25 years his junior whose daughter from a previous relationship is Nicollette Sheridan. Savalas later moved in with Sally, who gave birth to their son Nicholas Savalas on February 24, 1973. Although Savalas and Sally Adams never legally married, she went by the name Sally Savalas. They stopped living together in December 1978; she filed a palimony lawsuit against him in 1980, demanding support not only for herself and their son, but also for Nicollette.
In 1977, during the last season of Kojak, Savalas met Julie Hovland, a travel agent from Minnesota. The couple were married from 1984 until his death and had two children: Christian, an entrepreneur, singer and songwriter, and Ariana, an actress and singer/songwriter. Savalas was close friends with actor John Aniston, and was godfather to his daughter Jennifer, a successful TV and film actress.
Savalas held a degree in psychology and was a world-class poker player who finished 21st at the main event in the 1992 World Series of Poker. He was also a motorcycle racer and lifeguard. His other hobbies and interests included golfing, swimming, reading romantic books, watching football, traveling, collecting luxury cars, and gambling. He loved horse racing and bought a racehorse with movie director and producer Howard W. Koch. Naming the horse Telly's Pop, it won several races in 1975 including the Norfolk Stakes and Del Mar Futurity.
In his capacity as producer for Kojak, he gave many stars their first break, as Burt Lancaster did for him. He was considered by those who knew him to be a generous, graceful, compassionate man. He was also a strong contributor to his Greek Orthodox roots through the Saint Sophia and Saint Nicholas cathedrals in Los Angeles and was the sponsor of bringing electricity in the 1970s to his ancestral home, Ierakas, Greece.
Savalas had a minor physical handicap in that his left index finger was deformed. This deformed digit was often indicated on screen; the Kojak episode "Conspiracy of Fear" in which a close-up of Savalas holding his chin in his hand clearly shows the permanently bent finger.
As a philanthropist and philhellene, Savalas supported many Hellenic causes and made friends in major cities around the world. In Chicago, he often met with Illinois state senators Steven G. Nash and Samuel Maragos, also Greeks, as well as Greek millionaire Simeon Frangos, who owned the Athens North nightclub and the Flying Carpet Hotel near O'Hare Airport.
Deaths of relatives and later years
After Savalas reprised his Kojak role in the 1980s, he began to lose close relatives. His brother George Savalas, who played Stavros in the original series, died in 1985 of leukemia at age 60. His mother Christina, who had always been his best friend, supporter and devoted parent, died in 1988. Later that year, Savalas was diagnosed with transitional cell cancer of the bladder.
Savalas died on January 22, 1994, just one day after his 72nd birthday, of complications of cancer of the bladder and prostate at the Sheraton-Universal Hotel in Universal City, California. He had lived at the Sheraton in Universal City for 20 years, becoming such a fixture at the hotel bar that it was renamed Telly's. Savalas was interred at the George Washington section of Forest Lawn - Hollywood Hills Cemetery in Los Angeles, California. The funeral, held in the Saint Sophia Greek Orthodox Church, was attended by his third wife, Julie, and his brother Gus. His first two wives, Katherine and Marilyn, also attended with their own children. The mourners included Angie Dickinson, Nicollette Sheridan, Jennifer Aniston (his goddaughter), Kevin Sorbo, Sally Adams, Frank Sinatra, Don Rickles, and several of Savalas' Kojak co-stars – Kevin Dobson, Dan Frazer, and Vince Conti.
|1961||Mad Dog Coll||Lt. Darro||Film debut|
|1961||The Young Savages||Det. Lt. Gunderson|
|1962||Cape Fear||Private Det. Charles Sievers|
|1962||Birdman of Alcatraz||Feto Gomez||Nominated — Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor|
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture
|1962||The Interns||Dr. Dominic Riccio|
|1963||The Man from the Diners' Club||Foots Pulardos|
|1963||Love Is a Ball||Dr. Christian Gump (Millie's uncle)|
|1963||Johnny Cool||Vincenzo Santangelo|
|1964||The New Interns||Dr. Dominic Riccio|
|1965||The Greatest Story Ever Told||Pontius Pilate|
|1965||John Goldfarb, Please Come Home!||Macmuid||Uncredited|
|1965||The Slender Thread||Dr. Joe Coburn|
|1965||Battle of the Bulge||Sgt. Guffy||Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture|
|1966||Beau Geste||Sgt. Major Dagineau|
|1967||The Dirty Dozen||Archer Maggott|
|1968||Sol Madrid||Emil Dietrich|
|1968||The Scalphunters||Jim Howie|
|1968||Buona Sera, Mrs. Campbell||Walter Braddock|
|1969||The Assassination Bureau||Lord Bostwick|
|1969||Mackenna's Gold||Sgt. Tibbs|
|1969||Sophie's Place||Herbie Haseler|
|1969||On Her Majesty's Secret Service||Ernst Stavro Blofeld|
|1970||Land Raiders||Vicente Cardenas|
|1970||Kelly's Heroes||Big Joe|
|1970||Violent City||Al Weber|
|1971||Pretty Maids All in a Row||Surcher|
|1971||A Town Called Bastard||Don Carlos|
|1972||Crime Boss||Don Vincenzo|
|1972||Sonny and Jed||Sheriff Franciscus|
|1972||Horror Express||Capt. Kazan|
|1972||L'assassino... è al telefono||Ranko Drasovic|
|1972||Pancho Villa||Pancho Villa|
|1972||A Reason to Live, a Reason to Die||Maggiore Ward|
|1974||Lisa and the Devil||Leandro|
|1975||Inside Out||Harry Morgan|
|1976||Killer Force||Harry Webb|
|1979||Escape to Athena||Zeno|
|1979||Beyond the Poseidon Adventure||Capt. Stefan Svevo|
|1979||The Muppet Movie||El Sleezo Tough|
|1980||Border Cop||Frank Cooper|
|1983||Afghanistan pourquoi?||Rebel Leader|
|1984||Cannonball Run II||Hymie Kaplan|
|1985||Beyond Reason||Dr. Nicholas Mati||Originally filmed in 1977 and not released theatrically; made available on home video eight years later|
|1986||GoBots: Battle of the Rock Lords||Magmar||Voice|
|1993||Mind Twister||Richard Howland|
|1995||Backfire!||Most Evil Man||(final film role); posthumous release|
|1959-1960||Armstrong Circle Theatre||Various||TV series; 6 episodes|
|1959||NBC Sunday Showcase||Cotton||TV series; "Murder and the Android"|
|1960||Diagnosis: Unknown||Irish Tony Salivarro||TV series; "Gina, Gina"|
|1960||Dow Hour of Great Mysteries||TV series; "The Cat and the Canary"|
|1960||Naked City||Gabriel Hody||TV series; "To Walk in Silence"|
|1960||The Witness||Various||TV series; 3 episodes|
|1960||The United States Steel Hour||TV series; "Operation North Star"|
|1961-1962||Cain's Hundred||Various||TV series; 2 episodes|
|1961-1963||The Untouchables||Various||TV series; 3 episodes|
|1961||The Aquanauts||Paul Price||TV series; "Stormy Weather"|
|1961||Acapulco||Mr. Carver||TV series; 8 episodes|
|1961||The New Breed||Dr. Buel Reed||TV series; "The Compulsion to Confess"|
|1961||King of Diamonds||Various||TV series; 2 episodes|
|1961||The Dick Powell Show||Sgt. Marius||TV series; "Three Soldiers"|
|1961||The Detectives||Ben||TV series; "Escort"|
|1961||Ben Casey||George Dempsey||TV series; "A Dark Night for Billy Harris"|
|1962||Alcoa Premiere||Mario Lombardi||TV series; "The Hands of Danofrio"|
|1963-1965||Burke's Law||Various||TV series; 3 episodes|
|1963||The Eleventh Hour||Ben Cohen||TV series; "A Tumble from a High White House"|
|1963||The Dakotas||Jake Volet||TV series; "Reformation at Big Nose Butte"|
|1963||Big G||Tibor||TV series; "Arrow in the Sky"|
|1963||Grindl||Mr. Hartman||TV series; "The Gruesome Basement"|
|1963||77 Sunset Strip||Brother Hendricksen||TV series; "5: Part 4"|
|1963||The Twilight Zone||Erich Streator||TV series; "Living Doll"|
|1964-1966||The Fugitive||Various||TV series; 3 episodes|
|1964-1967||Combat!||Various||TV series; 2 episodes|
|1964||Channing||Paul Atherton||TV series; "A Claim to Immortality"|
|1964||Arrest and Trial||Frank Santo||TV series; "The Revenge of the Worm"|
|1964||Alfred Hitchcock Presents||Philadelphia Harry||TV series; "A Matter of Murder"|
|1964||Breaking Point||Vincenzo Gracchi||TV series; "My Hands Are Clean"|
|1964||Kraft Suspense Theatre||Various||TV series; 2 episodes|
|1964||The Rogues||Gen. Hector Jesus Diaz||TV series; "Viva Diaz!"|
|1964||Fanfare for a Death Scene||Ikhedai Khan||TV movie|
|1965||Bonanza||Charles Augustus Hackett||TV series; "To Own the World"|
|1965||Run for Your Life||Istvan Zabor||TV series; "How to Sell Your Soul for Fun and Profit"|
|1966||The Virginian||'Colonel' Bliss||TV series; "Men with Guns"|
|1967||The F.B.I||Ed Clementi||TV series; 2 episodes|
|1967||The Man from U.N.C.L.E||Count Valerino De Fanzini||TV series; 2 episodes|
|1967||Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre||Mueller||TV series; "Don't Wait for Tomorrow"|
|1967||Garrison's Gorillas||Wheeler||TV series; "The Big Con"|
|1967||Cimarron Strip||Bear||TV series; "The Battleground"|
|1970||The Red Skelton Show||Tex||TV series; "Stagecoach Hijack"|
|1971||ITV Sunday Night Theatre||Gregor Antonescu||TV series; "Man and Boy"|
|1971||Mongo's Back in Town||Lt. Pete Tolstad||TV movie (also known as Steel Wreath)|
|1972||Visions...||Lt. Phil Keegan||TV movie|
|1973||The Marcus-Nelson Murders||Lt. Theo Kojak||TV movie|
Nominated — Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie
|1973||She Cried Murder||Insp. Joe Brody||TV movie|
|1973-1978||Kojak||Lt. Theo Kojak||TV series; 118 episodes|
Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series (1974)
Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Television Series Drama (1975-1976)
Nominated — Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series (1975)
Nominated — Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series (1975)
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Television Series Drama (1977-1978)
|1975||Am Iaufenden Band||Singer/Kojak||TV series; episode #2.1|
|1978||Windows, Doors & Keyholes||TV movie|
|1979||Alice||Himself||TV series; "Has Anyone Here Seen Telly?"|
|1979||The French Atlantic Affair||Father Craig Dunleavy||Miniseries|
|1980||Alcatraz: The Whole Shocking Story||Cretzer||TV movie|
|1981||Hellinger's Law||Nick Hellinger||TV movie (originally planned as a pilot for a series)|
|1981||Tales of the Unexpected||Joe Brisson||TV series; "Completely Foolproof"|
|1982||American Playhouse||Peter Panakos||TV series; "My Palikari"|
|1984||The Cartier Affair||Phil Drexler||TV movie|
|1985||The Love Boat||Dr. Fabian Cain||TV series; 2 episodes|
|1985||Kojak: The Belarus File||Lt. Theo Kojak||TV movie (featuring returning Kojak co-stars George Savalas, Dan Frazer, Mark Russell and Vince Conti)|
|1985||George Burns Comedy Week||TV series; "The Assignment"|
|1985||Alice in Wonderland||The Cheshire Cat||TV movie|
|1985||Solomon's Universe||Solomon Stark||TV movie|
|1987||Kojak: The Price of Justice||Insp. Theo Kojak||TV movie|
|1987||The Dirty Dozen: The Deadly Mission||Major Wright||TV movie|
|1987||The Equalizer||Brother Joseph Heiden||TV series; 2 episodes|
|1987||J.J. Starbuck||The Greek||TV series; "Gold from the Rainbow"|
|1988||The Dirty Dozen: The Fatal Mission||Major Wright||TV movie|
|1989||The Hollywood Detective||Harry Bell||TV movie|
|1989||Kojak: Ariana||Insp. Theo Kojak||TV movie|
|1989||Kojak: Fatal Flaw||TV movie|
|1990||Kojak: Flowers for Matty||TV movie|
|1990||Kojak: It's Always Something||TV movie (with Kojak co-star Kevin Dobson)|
|1990||Kojak: None So Blind||TV movie|
|1991-1993||Ein Schloß am Wörthersee||Teddy||TV series; 2 episodes|
|1991||Rose Against the Odds||George Parnassus||TV movie|
|1992-1993||The Commish||Tommy Colette||TV series; 3 episodes|
- "An Evening with Telly Savalas". Cosmos Philly. August 20, 2017. Retrieved April 15, 2019.
- GCT (January 21, 2019). "On this day in 1994, Telly Savalas passes away". Greek City Times. Retrieved April 15, 2019.
- "Kojak: Telly Savalas". woodmereartmuseum.org. Retrieved April 15, 2019.
- "What the What? Telly Savalas Had a #1 Hit Song on This Date in 1975". K1017FM.com. March 9, 2015. Retrieved April 15, 2019.
- Richardson, Lisa (January 23, 1994). "`Kojak' Star Telly Savalas Dies at 70". Pqasb.pqarchiver.com. Retrieved December 10, 2009.
- "Telly Savalas Biography (1924-1994)". The Biography Channel. A+E Television Networks, LLC. Retrieved December 22, 2015.
- Wende Hyland and Roberta Haynes (1975). How to make it in Hollywood. Nelson-Hall. p. 135. ISBN 9780882292397.
- "Columbia School of General Studies - Notable Alumni". Columbia University. Retrieved June 17, 2019.
- `Kojak' Star Telly Savalas Dies at 70: [Home Edition] Richardson, Lisa. Los Angeles Times January 23, 1994: 1.
- Greeks Around the World. Apopsē Cultural Centre. 1999. p. 178. ISBN 9789608513938.
- "FACE OF THE DAY: Telly Savalas; Still suckers for a seventies cop". The Herald. July 17, 2001.
- "Report to New York". Retrieved April 15, 2019 – via www.imdb.com.
- Circle Theater Looks, Decides Not to Leap Wolters, Larry. Chicago Daily Tribune (October 30, 1960: nwE.
- O'Neill Play Takes Long Night Journey: Iceman Cometh in Own Good Time, but Has Plenty to Say Scheuer, Philip K. Los Angeles Times August 30, 1961: 25.
- THE TV SCENE---: All World Gets Red's Message Smith, Cecil. Los Angeles Times September 29, 1960: A13
- NEWS OF TV AND RADIO: Kovacs To Satirize Private Eyes in a Max Liebman Production -- Items By VAL ADAMS. New York Times November 27, 1960: X13.
- Savalas Savvies Tragedy of Success: TELLY SAVALAS Alpert, Don. Los Angeles Times August 19, 1962: N5.
- Telly Savalas turns joke into stardom Petersen, Clarence. Chicago Tribune June 18, 1973: b16.
- Retro Seriously, He'd Rather Go for Laughs: [Home Edition] King, Susan. Los Angeles Times February 21, 1993: 15
- Telly Savalas---an Actor by Instinct Page, Don. Los Angeles Times September 27, 1967: d18.
- Eiko Taki, Laurel Goodwin New Finds: They Have It or They Don't; Pre-Sell Buildups Too Costly Scheuer, Philip K. Los Angeles Times October 23, 1962: C9.
- FILM CLIPS: Telly Savalas Tackles the Devil Lee, Grant. Los Angeles Times June 1, 1977: f6.
- Telly Savalas: he's a latecomer who's made every role count Adler, Dick. Los Angeles Times January 20, 1974: k2.
- "Thomas J. Cavanagh Jr., 82, Who Inspired 'Kojak,' Dies" published by The New York Times, Sunday, August 4, 1996.
- Clive James Visions Before Midnight ISBN 0-330-26464-8
- Obituary: Telly Savalas: [3 Edition] Shipman, David. The Independent25 Jan 1994.
- Telly Savalas's mother is not impressed! Beck, Marilyn. Chicago Tribune December 14, 1975: h7.
- KOJAK HAS A HORSE THAT HAS NEVER BEEN CAUGHT: ... 'Four horses just finished in front of him this time,' Telly Savalas says. His confidence in Telly's Pop is unshaken. Incomplete Source Chapin, Dwight. Los Angeles Times April 14, 1976: oc_b1
- Telly Savalas works for return of 'Kojak' Beck, Marilyn. Chicago Tribune October 10, 1978: a8.
- TELLY SAVALAS: /Kojak Is Back TELLY SAVALAS BY MICHAEL E. HILL. The Washington Post February 10, 1985: PAGE3.
- Friends remember Kojak star: Cancer claims Savalas, 70: [FINAL Edition] The Windsor Star January 24, 1994: B6.
- THE MARVIN KITMAN SHOW The New-Old Telly's Back, Baby: [ALL EDITIONS] Kitman, Marvin. Newsday February 20, 1987: 05.
- Telly Savalas' new show stalls Beck, Marilyn. Chicago Tribune March 6, 1980: a11
- "Discography Telly Savalas".
- "Kojak's kinda town". BBC. April 29, 2008. Retrieved December 10, 2009.
- "Insights". Insights. Archived from the original on April 11, 2013.
- Corry, John (October 29, 1987). "TV Review; Safe From Titanic Is Opened". The New York Times. Retrieved January 19, 2018.
- Ringle, Ken (October 29, 1987). "'Titanic ... Live' A Night to Forget". The Washington Post. Retrieved January 19, 2018.
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