Gailard Sartain


Actor

About

Birth Place
Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA
Born
September 18, 1946

Biography

A hefty, beaming character player and comedian of TV and films with tousled hair and an often hearty manner, Gailard Sartain has played a wide range of roles but has been most typically cast as small-town country bumpkins. He began in entertainment operating a camera for a small Oklahoma TV station while pursuing graduate studies in fine arts at the University of Tulsa. Encouraged by fri...

Biography

A hefty, beaming character player and comedian of TV and films with tousled hair and an often hearty manner, Gailard Sartain has played a wide range of roles but has been most typically cast as small-town country bumpkins. He began in entertainment operating a camera for a small Oklahoma TV station while pursuing graduate studies in fine arts at the University of Tulsa. Encouraged by friends, he auditioned to replace a fired radio interview host, successfully held the job for a time, and was noticed by a talent scout. The hit CBS comedy-variety series "Hee Haw" had recently been let go by the network in a corporate decision to eliminate lowbrow entertainment in favor of more prestigious fare. But syndication had the last laugh and Sartain chuckled along, joining the series in 1972 and staying for nearly 20 seasons of country music, neo-vaudeville shtick and wooden plank slaps in the rear amid the goings-on in Kornfield Kounty.

Sartain served as a regular on other series as well (i.e., "Cher" CBS 1975-76; "Shields and Yarnell" CBS 1978), but none of them lasted very long. He was also ancillary on a number of comedy specials, in support of comics including Robert Klein and Steve Landesberg. TV-movies like "Cooperstown" (TNT, 1993) came later, but Sartain had by then parlayed his vigorous, playful presence into a sizable career in features. He debuted in "The Buddy Holly Story" (1978) as the Big Bopper, one of the rock musicians killed in the plane crash along with Holly, and even sang a rendition of "Chantilly Lace." "Roadie" (1980) marked a first collaboration with quirky auteur Alan Rudolph, and Sartain has since become a fixture in practically every Rudolph feature, playing a mayor in "Endangered Species" (1982), Fat Adolph in "Trouble in Mind" (1985), a New York critic in "The Moderns" (1988), and a cab driver in "Love at Large" (1990), among others. Sartain also contributed vivid supporting turns in "Mississippi Burning" (1988), "Fried Green Tomatoes" (1991), and in several "Ernest" farces starring Jim Varney. He tried to talk C Thomas Howell out of smoking cigarettes in Francis Ford Coppola's "The Outsiders" (1983), was Chairman Wood of the House Committee on un-American Activities in "Guilty By Suspicion" (1991), and, more recently, the sheriff in "The Spitfire Grill" (1996).

Filmography

 

Cast (Feature Film)

Elizabethtown (2005)
Ali (2001)
The Replacements (2000)
Pirates of Silicon Valley (1999)
Existo (1999)
Colette Wachuwill
The All New Adventures of Laurel and Hardy - For Love or Mummy (1999)
The Patriot (1998)
Sandman (1997)
Murder in Mind (1997)
Charlie
Joe Torre: Curveballs Along the Way (1997)
The Spitfire Grill (1996)
Open Season (1995)
George Rupert
Speechless (1994)
Getting Even With Dad (1994)
Clean Slate (1994)
Cooperstown (1993)
The Real Mccoy (1993)
Wishman (1992)
Equinox (1992)
Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot (1992)
Munroe
Sharkskin (1991)
Fried Green Tomatoes (1991)
Editor Couch
The Chase (1991)
Guilty By Suspicion (1991)
Love At Large (1990)
Taxi Driver
The Grifters (1990)
Ernest Goes to Jail (1990)
Blaze (1989)
The Moderns (1988)
Ernest Saves Christmas (1988)
Mississippi Burning (1988)
Ernest Goes to Camp (1987)
Made In Heaven (1987)
Leader of the Band (1987)
Uphill All the Way (1986)
The Big Easy (1986)
Chef Paul
Trouble In Mind (1985)
All Of Me (1984)
Songwriter (1984)
Choose Me (1984)
The Outsiders (1983)
Endangered Species (1982)
Hard Country (1981)
Johnny Bob
Roadie (1980)
The Hollywood Knights (1980)
Smokey and the Goodtime Outlaws (1978)
The Buddy Holly Story (1978)

Music (Feature Film)

The Buddy Holly Story (1978)
Song Performer

Cast (Special)

Gary Busey (2001)
Jim Varney: The E! True Hollywood Story (2000)
The Patriot (1999)
The Hee Haw 20th Anniversary Show (1988)
The Big Bang (1986)
The Steve Landesberg Television Show (1983)
Regular
Bulba (1981)
The Banana Company (1977)
Peebles
Klein Time (1977)
Shields and Yarnell (1977)
The Noonday Show (1975)

Life Events

1972

Was a regular on the long-running TV syndicated variety show, "Hee Haw"

1975

Appeared on the NBC variety pilot, "The Noonday Show", which aired for five installments as a daily program of news, comedy and music

1975

Was one of the comic featured on the short-lived sketch comedy series, "Keep on Truckin'"

1975

Was a regular on the CBS variety series, "Cher"

1978

Made feature film debut in "The Buddy Holly Story", in which, in his role as the "Big Bopper", he also performed the song, "Chantilly Lace"

1978

Played Willy Billy Honey on the syndicated comedy-variety series, "Hee Haw Honeys", a spinoff from "Hee Haw"

1978

Was a regular on the CBS variety series, "Shields and Yarnell" when it was tried as a regular season series after a popular summer run in 1977

1980

Made first film for director Alan Rudolph, "Roadie"

1983

Cast in Francis Ford Coppola's "The Outsiders"

1987

Made first appearance in one of the "Ernest" feature films starring Jim Varney, "Ernest Goes to Camp"

1987

Starred opposite Dennis Quaid in "The Big Easy"

1991

Cast as the husband of Kathy Bates in "Fried Green Tomatoes"

1991

First TV-movie, "The Chase" (NBC)

1993

Played role of C.D. Parker during the initial episodes of the CBS detective drama series, "Walker, Texas Ranger", which aired near the end of the 1992-93 season; when series was picked up for the 1993-94 season the role was taken over by Noble Willingham

1996

Co-starred with Marcia Gay Harden and Ellen Burstyn in "The Spitfire Grill"

1999

Played Oliver Hardy in "The All New Adventures of Laurel & Hardy: For Love or Mummy"

2005

Cast in Cameron Crowe's "Elizabethtown" starring Orlando Bloom and Kirsten Dunst

Bibliography