James MacArthur

James MacArthur

Highest Rated: 92% Hang 'em High (1968)

Lowest Rated: 57% Battle of the Bulge (1965)

Birthday: Dec 8, 1937

Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, USA

American actor James MacArthur was the adopted son of stage legend Helen Hayes and playwright Charles MacArthur. Despite his mother's insistence that James have a normal childhood, it was difficult not to be intoxicated by the theatre when growing up around the greatest acting and literary talent in the '40s. At age 8, young MacArthur appeared in a stock-company production of The Corn is Green. Fresh out of Harvard, MacArthur became a movie juvenile, specializing in tortured-teen roles in such films as The Young Stranger (1957) and Disney's Light in the Forest (1958). Outgrowing his somewhat charming awkwardness, MacArthur was less satisfying as a standard leading man, and by 1967 he was wasting away in pictures like The Love Ins. That same year, the pilot film for a new Jack Lord cop series, Hawaii Five-O, was screened for a test audience. The group liked the film but not the young man (Tim O'Kelly) who played Lord's assistant, deeming him too young for the part. Hawaii producer Leonard Freeman then called upon 30-year-old MacArthur, with whom Freeman had worked on the Clint Eastwood vehicle Hang 'Em High. From 1968 through 1979, MacArthur played Hawaii Five-0's detective Danny Williams, always handy whenever Jack Lord felt the need to snap "Book 'em, Danno." Though the series enriched MacArthur and made him a vital member of the Honolulu society and business world, the actor finally packed it in after 11 seasons, when it seemed as though he'd be Danno forever (the show continued for one more season). Too wealthy to care about a career at this point, James MacArthur still took an occasional role into the '80s; his most prominent post-Hawaii assignment was the 1980 TV movie Alcatraz: The Whole Shocking Story, in which he played a rare non-sympathetic character. MacArthur died in October 2010 of natural causes at age 72.


Highest Rated Movies



No Score Yet Storm Chasers: Revenge of the Twister Frank Del Rio 1998
No Score Yet Alcatraz: The Whole Shocking Story Walt Stomer 1980
No Score Yet The Night the Bridge Fell Down Cal Miller 1980
92% Hang 'em High Preacher 1968
No Score Yet The Love-Ins Larry Osborne 1967
No Score Yet Ride Beyond Vengeance Delahay the Census Taker 1966
No Score Yet Mosby's Marauders Actor 1966
57% Battle of the Bulge Lt. Weaver 1965
No Score Yet The Truth About Spring William Ashton 1965
86% The Bedford Incident Ensign Ralston 1965
No Score Yet Cry of Battle David McVey 1963
No Score Yet Spencer's Mountain Clayboy Spencer 1963
No Score Yet The Interns Dr. Lew Worship 1962
82% Swiss Family Robinson Fritz 1960
No Score Yet Kidnapped David Balfour 1960
No Score Yet Third Man on the Mountain Rudi Matt 1959
No Score Yet The Light in the Forest Johnny Butler/True Son 1958


No Score Yet Murder, She Wrote
Allan Gebhart 1984
No Score Yet Bonanza
Fredericks 1967
No Score Yet Gunsmoke
David 1966


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