Signed up for the Merchant Marines at age 16
Joined his father in Los Angeles to attend high school
Served in the Army and fought in the Korea War; awarded the Purple Heart after being injured
Persuaded by high school friend Paul Gregory to take a non-speaking role in the Broadway production of "The Caine Mutiny Court Martial"
TV debut was a small role in the ABC series, "Cheyenne"
Cast opposite Natalie Wood and Tab Hunter in "The Girl He Left Behind"
Made feature acting debut in "Toward the Unknown"
Appeared with Marlon Brando in "Sayonara"
Starred as Bret Maverick on the popular ABC Western, "Maverick"; also directed several episodes
First leading role in a feature film, "Darby's Rangers"
Cast opposite Doris Day in both "The Thrill of It All" and "Move Over, Darling"
Joined Steve McQueen in the WWII film, "The Great Escape"
Cast opposite Julie Andrews in Arthur Hiller's "The Americanization of Emily"
Cast in John Frankenheimer's racing drama, "Grand Prix"
Starred as a most impressive Wyatt Earp in John Sturges' "Hour of the Gun"
Starred in the comedy "Support Your Local Sheriff" from director Burt Kennedy
Played the title role in the TV Western, "Nichols" (NBC) as an army deserter reluctantly turned sheriff
Played private investigator Jim Rockford on the popular NBC drama, "The Rockford Files"; also directed several episodes
Reprised role of professional gambler for the revival series, "Bret Maverick" (NBC)
Re-teamed with Julie Andrews for Blake Edwards' "Victor/Victoria"
Played the leading role in the CBS miniseries, "Space"
Played as a small town pharmacist romancing Sally Field in "Murphy's Romance"; earned Best Actor Oscar and Golden Globe nominations
Debuted as a producer with the 'Hallmark Hall of Fame' presentation, "Promise" (CBS)
Co-starred with James Woods (who played the founder of Alcoholics Anonymous) in the CBS TV-movie, "My Name Is Bill W."
Returned to TV as a con man who fills his late ex-wife's city council seat on the short-lived series, "Man of the People" (NBC)
Played Zane Cooper in the modern day film version of "Maverick"; starred Mel Gibson as Bret Maverick
Reprised role of Jim Rockford in a eight highly-rated CBS TV-movies
Played Captain Call in the CBS miniseries "Streets of Laredo," a sequel to Larry McMurtry's "Lonesome Dove"
Teamed with Jack Lemmon playing two former presidents in "My Fellow Americans"
Co-starred with Clint Eastwood, Tommy Lee Jones and Donald Sutherland in "Space Cowboys"; also produced and directed by Eastwood
Had a recurring role on season six of the CBS drama, "Chicago Hope"
Played a US Supreme Court Justice in the short-lived CBS series, "First Monday"
Played the father of Sandra Bullock in the film adaptation of "Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood"
Joined the cast of the ABC sitcom, "8 Simple Rules" after the death of John Ritter
Co-starred with Gene Rowlands as husband and wife in Nick Cassavetes' "The Notebook"; earned a SAG nomination for Supporting Actor
Played the mysterious Red Stevens in "The Ultimate Gift"
Lent his voice to the computer animated sci-fi film, "Battle for Terra"