George Hamilton


Actor
George Hamilton

About

Also Known As
George Stevens Hamilton
Birth Place
Memphis, Tennessee, USA
Born
August 12, 1939

Biography

Handsome, charming, self-amused and of course, deeply tanned, George Hamilton was an actor whose long career in film and television was consistently overshadowed by his dashing persona both on and off-screen. Frequently cast as cads or hopeless romantics in films during the late 1950s and early 1960s, he enjoyed success in lightweight roles, but yearned for more substantive parts. His at...

Photos & Videos

Jack of Diamonds - Color Scene Stills
Two Weeks in Another Town - Movie Poster
Your Cheatin' Heart - Pressbook

Family & Companions

Alana Stewart
Wife
Divorced; married to Rod Stewart (1979-1984).
Kimberly Blackford
Companion
Model. Born c. 1969; began on-again, off-again relationship c. 1997; as a joke, got "married" on an episode of Hamilton's syndicated talk show; separated in 1999; mother of Hamilton's youngest son; when Hamilton acknowledged his son, he refused to identify the child's mother but subsequent reports revealed who she was.
Danielle Steel
Companion
Author. Dated in late summer 1999; announced plans to marry; broke up.

Bibliography

"Life's Little Pleasures"
George Hamilton (1998)

Biography

Handsome, charming, self-amused and of course, deeply tanned, George Hamilton was an actor whose long career in film and television was consistently overshadowed by his dashing persona both on and off-screen. Frequently cast as cads or hopeless romantics in films during the late 1950s and early 1960s, he enjoyed success in lightweight roles, but yearned for more substantive parts. His attempts to achieve such roles in the mid-1960s, such as his turn as Hank Williams in "Your Cheatin' Heart" (1964), were met largely with dismissal. He floundered through the 1970s until striking gold with "Love at First Bite" (1979), a winning comedy which cast him as a vain Count Dracula. Hamilton's ability to mock his own image proved his saving grace, and he enjoyed a fruitful run in the 1990s and 2000s as a comic presence in numerous films and television shows, often as himself. His longevity in show business was proof positive that a career not only had second acts, but could surpass all expectations.

Born August 12, 1939 in Memphis, TN, he was the son of Southern society matron Ann Spaulding, whose second husband (of four), bandleader George "Spike" Hamilton, was his father. Hamilton moved extensively throughout the South due to his father's performing engagements before eventually settling in Palm Beach, FL. There, he developed a taste for acting through numerous high school plays, and eventually won top honors in a statewide acting contest. After deciding that Hollywood held the key to his fortune, he relocated to Los Angeles in the late fifties, where his pin-up worthy looks and effortless self-assurance helped land him one of the last studio contracts with MGM.

He proved a natural for brooding, romantic young heroes, as well as the occasional heel in B-pictures like "Crime and Punishment, USA" (1959), which earned him a Golden Globe for Most Promising Newcomer. Hamilton eventually settled into a string of youthful leads in melodramas and sudsy romances; his flawless features provided considerable distraction - and temptation for the likes of Mercedes McCambridge in "Angel Baby" (1961), Lana Turner in "By Love Possessed" (1961) and Yvette Mimeux in "A Light in the Piazza" (1962). Though he received the occasional award for his efforts, most notably a BAFTA nomination for "Piazza," Hamilton was largely perceived as a lightweight actor by studios and critics alike, and as such, frequently found himself in such trifles as "Where The Boys Are" (1960).

Hamilton attempted to break the mold that was forming rapidly around him with such decidedly non-heartthrob roles as the ill-fated country singer Hank Williams in the biopic "Your Cheatin' Heart" (1964) and a Mexican revolutionary romanced by Brigitte Bardot and Jeanne Moreau in Louis Malle's Western parody, "Viva Maria!" (1965). Neither proved particularly helpful to his career, and by the mid-'60s, Hamilton was drawing more attention from his relationship with First Daughter Lynda Bird Johnson than for his film roles. The dissolution of the studio system, and the rise of intense, often Method-driven actors like Gene Hackman, Dustin Hoffman and Elliott Gould helped to render a traditional Hollywood leading man like Hamilton obsolete. By the late 1960s and early 1970s, he was stranded in forgettable efforts like "The Power" (1968). There was a brief return to the limelight with "Evel Knievel" (1971), which Hamilton co-produced in addition to starring as the pop culture hero, but within a few years, he was slogging through such miserable projects as "The Happy Hooker Goes to Washington" (1977) and "Sextette" (1978).

In 1979, Hamilton discovered that gentle self-parody was the key to success, which he parlayed to great effect in Stan Dragoti's "Love at First Bite" (1979). A charming mix of slapstick and romantic comedy, Hamilton's Dracula arrives in modern-day New York, where he struggles to align his Old World charms with a new breed of women. Critics praised Hamilton for his comic skills, which earned him a Golden Globe nomination and quite possibly the first degree of respect from critics since his earliest days in Hollywood. He attempted to follow the success of "Bite" with another movie parody, "Zorro, The Gay Blade" (1981), but the results were largely tasteless.

With a new career direction firmly in place, Hamilton played up the camp in numerous television appearances, most notably a season-long guest stint on "Dynasty" (ABC, 1981-89) as a producer who attempts to murder John Forsythe's Blake Carrington. He was also put to excellent use in countless commercials which played up his impeccable sartorial style and smooth repartee to plug their products. Hamilton himself served as pitchman for several businesses, including a line of tanning products and a tanning salon franchise. There were occasional bumps along the road - in the late 1980s, Hamilton was called to testify against former Philippines dictator Ferdinand Marcos and wife Imelda during their racketeering trial. The actor had befriended the eccentric duo during a promotional tour through the country for "Love at First Bite," and had become entangled in several financial schemes. But for the most part, Hamilton was content and busy as a tongue-in-cheek symbol of classic Tinseltown and the Good Life in general.

Despite his popularity, Hamilton did not return to movies until 1990, when Francis Ford Coppola cast him as an oily lawyer for the Corleone family in "The Godfather Part III." Critics initially raised an eyebrow at the choice, but Hamilton proved to be among the film's limited saving graces. He soon settled into a string of bit and supporting roles in features and television; often as wealthy and self-absorbed older men, but more often than not, comic roles that played to his strength in self-parody. But as the 1990s wore on, audiences seemed more interested in seeing Hamilton play himself than any particular role, and he began to develop a second career as a TV personality. At one point, however, when his son Ashley rapidly married television's then biggest off-screen wild child, Hamilton became famous for briefly being the father-in-law of Shannen Doherty of "90210" (Fox, 1990-2000) fame.

With former wife Alana Stewart, he launched a lighthearted daytime talk show, "George and Alana" (syndicated, 1995-96) before joining the celebrity panel on a revival of "Match Game" (syndicated, 1998). A stint as the host of the reality series "The Family" (ABC, 2003), which pitted the members of a large Italian-American brood against each other for cash prizes, preceded an endearing run on the first season of "Dancing With the Stars" (ABC, 2005- ). Once again, humor proved Hamilton's secret weapon; he broke out his Zorro costume and threw himself into deliberately campy numbers that not only dispelled concerns over his recent knee surgery, but advanced him all the way to Round 6 in the competition.

Hamilton's success on "Stars" placed him in the forefront of likely successors to Bob Barker as host of "The Price is Right" (CBS, 1972- ). He bore his loss to comic Drew Carey with typical good grace, moving to a vast array of other projects, including a stint on Broadway as slick lawyer Billy Flynn in "Chicago." The following year, he released an autobiography, Don't Mind If I Do (2008), a charming and undeniably readable account of his professional and private life, including details of his numerous romances with, among others, Elizabeth Taylor, Danielle Steele, and actress Kimberly Blackford, who bore him a son, George Thomas, at the age of 61.

Filmography

 

Cast (Feature Film)

Silver Skies (2015)
Holiday Road Trip (2013)
L.A. Riot Spectacular (2005)
A Very Cool Christmas (2004)
Hollywood Ending (2002)
Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles (2001)
Himself
Casper Meets Wendy (1998)
8 Heads in a Duffel Bag (1997)
Vanished (1995)
Malcolm Patterson
Playback (1995)
Two Fathers: Justice For the Innocent (1994)
Trent Bradley
Amore! (1993)
The House on Sycamore Street (1992)
Doc Hollywood (1991)
Caution: Murder Can Be Hazardous to Your Health (1991)
Once Upon A Crime (1991)
The Godfather, Part III (1990)
Poker Alice (1987)
Two Fathers' Justice (1985)
Bradley
De l'enfer a la Victoire (1984)
Zorro, The Gay Blade (1981)
The Great Cash Giveaway Getaway (1980)
Death Car on the Freeway (1979)
Love At First Bite (1979)
Institute for Revenge (1979)
Alan Roberto
The Users (1978)
Sextette (1978)
Killer on Board (1977)
The Strange Possession of Mrs. Oliver (1977)
The Happy Hooker Goes to Washington (1977)
The Dead Don't Die (1975)
Don Drake
The Man Who Loved Cat Dancing (1973)
Evel Knievel (1971)
Evel [Robert Craig Knievel]
The Power (1968)
Jim Tanner
A Time for Killing (1967)
Capt. Dorrit Bentley
Doctor, You've Got To Be Kidding (1967)
Harlan Wycliff
That Man George (1967)
George
Jack of Diamonds (1967)
Jeff Hill
Viva Maria (1965)
Flor├Ęs
Looking for Love (1964)
Your Cheatin' Heart (1964)
Hank Williams
Act One (1963)
Moss Hart
The Victors (1963)
Corporal Trower
Two Weeks in Another Town (1962)
Davie Drew
Light in the Piazza (1962)
Fabrizio Naccarelli
Angel Baby (1961)
Paul Strand
A Thunder of Drums (1961)
Lieut. Curtis McQuade
By Love Possessed (1961)
Warren Winner
All the Fine Young Cannibals (1960)
Tony McDowall
Where the Boys Are (1960)
Ryder Smith
Home from the Hill (1960)
Theron Hunnicutt
Crime and Punishment, U.S.A. (1959)
Robert Cole
The Mississippi Gambler (1953)
George's butler
The President's Lady (1953)
House servant
City Beneath the Sea (1953)
High Priest
Flesh and Fury (1952)
Waiter
Scarlet Angel (1952)
Gus
Lone Star (1952)
Noah
The Well (1951)
Grandfather
Tap Roots (1948)
Quint
An Act of Murder (1948)
Court attendant

Producer (Feature Film)

My One and Only (2009)
Executive Producer
Zorro, The Gay Blade (1981)
Producer
Love At First Bite (1979)
Executive Producer
Evel Knievel (1971)
Producer

Misc. Crew (Feature Film)

Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles (2001)
Other

Cast (Special)

Too Cool for Christmas (2006)
Life of Luxury (2003)
Host
Intimate Portrait: Joan Collins (2003)
George Hamilton: Playing the Movie Star (2000)
Intimate Portrait: Vanna White (1998)
Canned Ham: 8 Heads in a Duffel Bag (1997)
Host
The 1997 Miss Universe Pageant (1997)
Host
The 1997 Miss USA Pageant (1997)
Host
Dame Edna's Hollywood (1992)
Comedy Battle of the Sexes (1992)
Soap Opera Digest Awards (1992)
Host
Heartstoppers... Horror at the Movies (1992)
Host
The Lords of Hollywood (1990)
Host
Dracula: Live From Transylvania (1989)
Golden Globe Awards (1989)
Performer
The 75th Anniversary of Beverly Hills (1989)
Super Model Search: Look of the Year (1988)
Co-Host
Poor Richard (1984)
Richard Manning Iii
The Fantastic Miss Piggy Show (1982)
Circus of the Stars (1977)
Class of '67 (1966)
Host

Cast (Short)

Sunday Night at the Trocadero (1937)

Cast (TV Mini-Series)

The Hollywood Mom's Mystery (2004)
Woody Prentice
P.T. Barnum (1999)
Rough Riders (1997)
Hart to Hart: Till Death Do Us Hart (1996)
Monte Carlo (1986)
Harry Price
Malibu (1983)
Jay Pomerantz
The Seekers (1979)
Roots (1977)

Life Events

1959

Feature debut, "Crime and Punishment"

1960

Played a smooth Ivy Leaguer in the film, "Where the Boys Are"

1963

Co-starred with George Peppard as a soldier in the World War II film, "The Victors"

1964

Portrayed the country-western music legend Hank Williams in the biopic, "Your Cheatin' Heart"

1966

Made headlines as the companion and potential husband of then President Lyndon Johnson's daughter, Lynda Bird

1967

Played a Confederate captain, opposite Glenn Ford, in "A Time for Killing"

1967

Toured as Nick Arnstein, opposite Barbara Cook as Fanny Brice, in "Funny Girl"

1971

First feature as co-producer (also star), "Evel Knievel"

1979

Played a modern day Dracula in the surprise hit, "Love At First Bite"; also co-executive produced; earned a Golden Globe nomination

1981

Offered a comic portrayal of a famed swordsman in "Zorro, the Gay Blade"; earned a Golden Globe nomination

1985

Joined the sixth season of the Aaron Spelling-produced, "Dynasty" (ABC)

1990

Cast as the Corleone family's lawyer in a much-anticipated sequel, "The Godfather, Part III"

1991

Had a small role in "Doc Hollywood"

1995

Co-hosted, with ex-wife Alana Stewart, the short-lived syndicated talk show, "George and Alana"

1997

Cast as a regular on the NBC sitcom, "Jenny," playing Jenny McCarthy's dead movie star father

1998

Became regular panelist on the syndicated revival of "Match Game"

2002

Appeared as a studio executive in Woody Allen's "Hollywood Ending"

2003

Hosted the ABC reality television series "The Family"

2006

Joined the second season of ABC's reality competition, "Dancing with the Stars"

2007

Cast as Billy Flynn in the Broadway company of "Chicago"

2009

Joined the ITV series, "I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!"; quit five days before the show's final

Photo Collections

Jack of Diamonds - Color Scene Stills
Here are some color scene stills from MGM's Jack of Diamonds (1967), starring George Hamilton and Joseph Cotten.
Two Weeks in Another Town - Movie Poster
Here is the American One-Sheet Movie Poster from Two Weeks in Another Town (1962). One-sheets measured 27x41 inches, and were the poster style most commonly used in theaters.
Your Cheatin' Heart - Pressbook
Here is the campaign book (pressbook) for Your Cheatin' Heart (1964). Pressbooks were sent to exhibitors and theater owners to aid them in publicizing the film's run in their theater.
Where the Boys Are - Publicity Stills
Here are a number of publicity stills from Where the Boys Are (1960), starring George Hamilton and Yvette Mimieux. Publicity stills were specially-posed photos, usually taken off the set, for purposes of publicity or reference for promotional artwork.
Jack of Diamonds - George Hamilton Publicity Stills
Here are a few photos of George Hamilton taken for MGM's Jack of Diamonds (1967). Publicity stills were specially-posed photos, usually taken off the set, for purposes of publicity or reference for promotional artwork.

Videos

Movie Clip

Light In The Piazza (1962) - Two Butterflies Poolside in Florence, the mentally-challenged Amerian Clara (Yvette Mimieux) frolics with Italian George Hamilton (as "Fabrizio"), mother Margaret (Olivia de Havilland) and friend (Isabel Dean) overseeing, in Light In The Piazza, 1962.
Power, The (1968) - He Won't Expose Himself! Nordlund (Michael Rennie), supervisor from the Pentagon, is intrigued because Hallson (Arthur O’Connell) claims that someone on the committee (including Earl Holliman, Richard Carlson, Suzanne Pleshette, Nehemiah Persoff and George Hamilton as Tanner), has the power to take over using mind-control, in The Power, 1968.
Power, The (1968) - Something Light And Bubbly Scientist Tanner (George Hamilton) disagrees but Margery (Suzanne Pleshette) insists that they follow-up when the wife of Hallson (Arthur O’Connell), colleague in their pain-tolerance research project, whom we know has been killed via mind-control, calls to say he hasn’t come home, in The Power, 1968.
Power, The (1968) - Is The Pain Really That Intense? Opening with the arrival of U.S. Navy supervisor Nordlund (Michael Rennie) at a California lab where they apparently test subjects’ tolerance for pain, George Hamilton as Tanner, scientist in charge, in The Power, 1968, from producer George Pal, from a novel by Frank M. Robinson.
Act One (1963) - My Indigent Friends George Hamilton as future playwright Moss Hart meets his New York buddies, George Segal, David Doyle, Bert Convy as actor Archie Leach (who will become Cary Grant) and Jonathan Lippe (later Goldsmith, the “Most Interesting Man In The World,” from the beer commercials) as Teddy, in the bio-pic Act One, 1963.
Act One (1963) - Inside The Devious MInd Aspiring playwright Moss Hart (George Hamilton) meets his future collaborator, the already established George S. Kaufman (Jason Robards Jr.) on the phone, not realizing he’s been set up by rival producer Stone, later meeting their mutual agent Siegel (Joseph Leon), in the bio-pic Act One, 1963.
Act One (1963) - Indications Of Further Nervousness Writer, producer and director Dore Schary enjoying an extended piece of context-setting via radio news, introducing George Hamilton as his central character, will-be playwright Moss Hart, in the 1963 bio-pic based on Hart’s memoir, Act One.
Act One (1963) - Satire Is A Disciplined Form Made to wait for days, to see Broadway producer Warren Stone (Eli Wallach), who has agreed to read his comedy, Moss Hart (George Hamilton) finally gets in, and gets more than he wants, in 1929 New York, in Dore Schary’s film from Hart’s memoir, Act One, 1963.
Doctor, You've Got To Be Kidding (1967) - Take This Memo Nichelle Nichols (Lieutenant Uhura!) is the first to help Heather (Sandra Dee) as she applies for a job with hot-shot executive Wycliff (George Hamilton), making his first appearance in Doctor, You've Got To Be Kidding, 1967.
Two Weeks In Another Town (1962) - Terribly Terribly After three years in recovery, actor and sometime executive Jack (Kirk Douglas) arrives at Cinecitta in Rome where old pal Kruger (Edward G. Robinson) is directing Davie (George Hamilton) and Barzelli (Rosanna Schiffiano), in Vincente Minnelli's Two Weeks In Another Town, 1962.
Two Weeks In Another Town (1962) - Nauseating Little Creep! Vincente Minnelli uses his own The Bad And The Beautiful, with Lana Turner and Kirk Douglas, here playing "Jack," in a screening room with director Kruger (Edward G. Robinson), Davie (George Hamilton) exploding, Veronica (Dahlia Lavi) left behind, in Two Weeks In Another Town, 1962.
Two Weeks In Another Town (1962) - Under The Flag Of Liberia Now working in Rome on the picture directed by his old friend Kruger (Edward G. Robinson), recovering alcoholic actor-producer Jack (Kirk Douglas) is having trouble with his ex-wife (Cyd Charisse) before Mrs. Kruger (Claire Trevor) snaps during a toast, in Vincente Minnelli’s Two Weeks In Another Town, 1962.

Trailer

Doctor, You've Got To Be Kidding! - (Original Trailer) Four suitors pursue a pregnant singer (Sandra Dee) to the maternity ward.
Man Who Loved Cat Dancing, The - (Original Trailer) A vengeful outlaw (Burt Reynolds) protects a woman from his gang in The Man Who Loved Cat Dancing (1973).
By Love Possessed - (Original Trailer) Lana Turner's desperate search for love leads to an affair with her husband's law partner in John Sturges' By Love Possessed (1961).
Two Weeks in Another Town - (Original Trailer) A recovering alcoholic film director tries for a comeback in Rome in Two Weeks in Another Town (1962) starring Kirk Douglas & Edward G. Robinson.
Thunder of Drums, A - (Original Trailer) A green Cavalry lieutenant (George Hamilton) learns the ropes fast when he's shipped out West in A Thunder of Drums (1961).
Your Cheatin' Heart - (Original Trailer) George Hamilton portrays country-western legend Hank Williams in Your Cheatin' Heart (1964). The voice singing the songs belongs to Hank Williams, Jr.
Power, The - (Original Trailer) A scientist tries to unmask a murderous genius with telekinetic skills in The Power (1968), starring George Hamilton & Suzanne Pleshette.
Light In The Piazza - (Original Trailer) Olivia de Havilland's efforts to marry off her daughter are hindered by a family secret in Light In The Piazza (1962).
Jack Of Diamonds - (Original Trailer) Gentlemen crook Joseph Cotten trains George Hamilton to become master thief Jack of Diamonds (1967).
Looking For Love - (Original Trailer) Promising singer Connie Francis has to choose between show business and marriage while Looking For Love (1964).
Lone Star - (Original Trailer) A frontiersman helps out with Texas's fight for independence from Mexico in Lone Star (1952), starring Clark Gable & Ava Gardner.
Act One - (Original Trailer) George Hamilton stars in the true story of playwright Moss Hart who conquered Broadway and Hollywood in Act One (1963).

Family

George Hamilton
Father
Society bandleader who toured the country as Spike Hamilton and his Barbary Coast Orchestra.
Ann Potter Hamilton Hunt Spaulding
Mother
Married four times; Hamilton's father was her second husband.
William Potter
Half-Brother
Interior designer. Nine years older.
David Hamilton
Brother
One year younger.
Ashley Hamilton
Son
Actor. Born on September 30, 1974; was briefly married to actresses Shannen Doherty and Angie Everhart; as of summer 2000, engaged to Sara Foster.
Georgethomas Hamilton
Son
Born in 2000; mother, Kimberly Blackford.

Companions

Alana Stewart
Wife
Divorced; married to Rod Stewart (1979-1984).
Kimberly Blackford
Companion
Model. Born c. 1969; began on-again, off-again relationship c. 1997; as a joke, got "married" on an episode of Hamilton's syndicated talk show; separated in 1999; mother of Hamilton's youngest son; when Hamilton acknowledged his son, he refused to identify the child's mother but subsequent reports revealed who she was.
Danielle Steel
Companion
Author. Dated in late summer 1999; announced plans to marry; broke up.

Bibliography

"Life's Little Pleasures"
George Hamilton (1998)