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Darrell Larson

Darrell Larson

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Also Known As: Darrell Ray Larson Died:
Born: December 13, 1950 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Tracy, California, USA Profession: actor, director

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

A slim, affable red-haired actor who has been a familiar face in TV, films and California theater since 1970, Darrell Larson was still a student at UCLA when he made his acting debut as a young patient with a venereal disease on the ABC drama series "Marcus Welby, M.D." He spent the next few years making guest appearances on more than 30 series, always, in his words, "playing the same misunderstood young American boy, who was saved by the love of a good girl or by Marcus Welby."Larson's first TV-movie was as swinging bachelor Bill Bixby's unexpected teenaged son in "Congratulations, It's Boy!" (ABC, 1971). He went on to appear in "All My Darling Daughters" (ABC, 1972) and its 1973 sequel and the wayward girls' home classic "The Girls of Huntington House" (ABC, 1973). His big screen career got off to an unpromising start with "The Student Nurses" (1970) and slogged along with a small part in "The Magnificent Seven Ride" and a lead role in the low-budget "Outside In" (both 1972).In 1973, Larson became fed up with film and TV and for the next decade concentrated on acting and directing in California theater productions. He appeared in everything from major L.A. Equity shows to tiny experimental...

A slim, affable red-haired actor who has been a familiar face in TV, films and California theater since 1970, Darrell Larson was still a student at UCLA when he made his acting debut as a young patient with a venereal disease on the ABC drama series "Marcus Welby, M.D." He spent the next few years making guest appearances on more than 30 series, always, in his words, "playing the same misunderstood young American boy, who was saved by the love of a good girl or by Marcus Welby."

Larson's first TV-movie was as swinging bachelor Bill Bixby's unexpected teenaged son in "Congratulations, It's Boy!" (ABC, 1971). He went on to appear in "All My Darling Daughters" (ABC, 1972) and its 1973 sequel and the wayward girls' home classic "The Girls of Huntington House" (ABC, 1973). His big screen career got off to an unpromising start with "The Student Nurses" (1970) and slogged along with a small part in "The Magnificent Seven Ride" and a lead role in the low-budget "Outside In" (both 1972).

In 1973, Larson became fed up with film and TV and for the next decade concentrated on acting and directing in California theater productions. He appeared in everything from major L.A. Equity shows to tiny experimental workshops in storefronts. Larson had the title role in Shakespeare's "Henry IV, Part 1" and was featured in "Dominicus Marlowe," Sam Shepard's "Action" and a play about stunt pilot and film star "Ormer Locklear." Among his directing credits are the L.A. productions of "Are You Lookin'?" and the Sam Shepard/Patti Smith play "Cowboy Mouth." He and Murray Mednick collaborated on the multi-play, seven-year series "Coyote Project." Larson was also in at the beginnings of such companies as the Provisionals, the Odyssey, the Gene Dynarski and Santa Monica's Powerhouse Theater.

In 1979, Larson began to accept film and TV projects again, though he never gave up his theatrical work. He returned to films with a small part as a demonstrator in James Bridges' "The China Syndrome" (1979) and since then has appeared in more than a dozen films: mostly, large roles in small films and small roles in large ones. His lesser roles have included appearances as Louella Parsons' spy in "Frances" (1982), a security technician in Natalie Wood's swan song "Brainstorm" (1983), a flight attendant in Stephen Frears' "Hero" (1992) and a neighbor to Sally Field and Ed Harris in John Schlesinger's "Eye for an Eye" (1996). Larson has played leads in smaller films, but none of them has really caught on with the public. He reteamed with James Bridges to play a junkie in the mystery "Mike's Murder" (1982) and went on to star in the disaster film "City Limits" (1985) and the detective thriller "Dead Aim" (1987).

Larson has also appeared in a number of TV-movies and series, beginning with the miniseries "Studs Lonigan" (NBC, 1979). His TV-movies have included the courtroom drama "The Last Innocent Man" (HBO, 1987), the sudsy "Mistress" (CBS, 1987) and "Danielle Steele's 'Fine Things'" (NBC, 1990), "Proudheart" (TNN, 1993) and "The Gambler V: Playing for Keeps" (CBS, 1994). He was also a regular on the short-lived series "Morningstar/Eveningstar" (CBS, 1986), as a social worker, and "Heartbeat" (ABC, 1988-1989), as a fertility specialist. Larson has continued to turn up as a guest on numerous series like "L.A. Law," "Matlock," "Designing Women" and "Party of Five."

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

DIRECTOR:

1.
  Wizard Of Oz In Concert, The (1995) Stage Director

CAST: (feature film)

3.
 Stepmom (1998) Duncan Samuels
4.
 Shadrach (1998) Mr Whitehurst
5.
 Pants on Fire (1997) Ralph Blaylock
6.
 Eye for An Eye (1996) Peter Green
7.
 Stuart Saves His Family (1995) Jerry
8.
 Hero (1992) Flight Attendant Freddy
9.
 Men At Work (1990) Jack Berger
10.
 Fine Things (1990) Chandler Scott
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1969:
Moved to Los Angeles at 17
1970:
TV debut in an episode of "Marcus Welby, MD" (date approximate)
1970:
Film debut, "The Student Nurses"
1971:
TV-movie debut, "Congratulations, It's a Boy!" (ABC)
1972:
Began concentrating on theater rather than film and TV
1979:
Returned to films after long absence, in "The China Syndrome", directed by James Bridges
1982:
Had leading role in "Mike's Murder"
1986:
TV series debut, in short-lived drama "Morningstar/Eveningstar" (CBS)
1988:
Had featured role on the ABC medical drama "HeartBeat"
1990:
Appeared in "Men at Work"
1992:
Played a flight attendant in "Hero"
1995:
Adapted and served as stage producer and director of "The Wizard of Oz in Concert: Dreams Comes True" (TNT)
1996:
Has featured role in "Eye for an Eye"
1997:
Directed a program of Sam Shepard one-acts at the Signature Theatre in NYC
1998:
Appeared in "Shadrach", directed and co-written by his wife Susanna Styron
1998:
Acted in "Stepmom"
2002:
As artistic director of Culture Project, an NYC-based performing arts group, devised "Drive All Night", a rock opera using the songs of Bruce Springsteen
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

University of California at Los Angeles: Los Angeles , California -

Notes

"My metaphor for show business is that it is this island in the middle of a raging river. You have to get across this river onto the shore. There are guys on the shore with clubs, saying get off, but you fight your way through. Now you're on the island, but you have to get to the castle. Then you have to get inside the castle."--Darrell Larson, quoted in Drama-Logue, March 2, 1989.

"I have people coming up all the time and congratulating me for working so much. I do work a lot, but not necessarily in films. I act in and direct theater as well. I've always been active in making my own work. It's essential or I'd go mad. ... I've always been interested in non-corporate work anyway, and now with so many good independent films around, it seems possible. In the end, you have to find a spiritual center in yourself, no matter what is happening. As for the politics of the business tiself, you just have to do the best work you can and go home." --Darrell Larson, quoted in Interview, September 1985.

Companions close complete companion listing

wife:
Susanna Styron. Writer, director. Second wife; married c. 1985.

Family close complete family listing

son:
Tavish Larson. Born in May 1977;.
daughter:
Emma Larson. Born in August 1988; mother, Susanna Styron.

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