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Steve Forrest (actor)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Steve Forrest
Steve Forrest Hondo Harrelson SWAT 1975.JPG
Steve Forrest in publicity photo for S.W.A.T. (1975)
William Forrest Andrews

(1925-09-29)September 29, 1925
DiedMay 18, 2013(2013-05-18) (aged 87)
Alma materUCLA
Years active1943–2003
Spouse(s)Christine Carilas
(m.1948–2013; his death)
RelativesDana Andrews (brother)

Steve Forrest (born William Forrest Andrews; September 29, 1925 – May 18, 2013) was an American actor who was well known for his role as Lt. Hondo Harrelson in the hit television series S.W.A.T. which was broadcast on ABC from 1975 to 1976.[1] He was also known for his performance in Mommie Dearest (1981).

Life and career

Forrest was born William Forrest Andrews in Huntsville, Texas, the 12th of 13 children of Annis (née Speed) and Charles Forrest Andrews, a Baptist minister. One of his older brothers was film star Dana Andrews.

Forrest enlisted in the United States Army at the age of 18 and fought in the Battle of the Bulge during World War II. In 1950, he earned a bachelor's degree with honors from UCLA, majoring in theater with a minor in psychology.[1][2][3]

He worked as a stagehand at the La Jolla Playhouse outside San Diego. There Gregory Peck discovered him, cast him in La Jolla's production of Goodbye Again, and then arranged for Forrest's first screen test with MGM, where he was signed to a contract.[1]

Among Forrest's notable films were So Big, for which he won the Golden Globe Award for New Star of the Year – Actor, The Longest Day, North Dallas Forty, and Mommie Dearest. He had cameo roles in the comedies Spies Like Us and Amazon Women on the Moon, and the 2003 film version of S.W.A.T.[4]

Forrest was also a trained vocalist, and he made his debut on Broadway as boxer Bob Stanton in the 1958 production of the musical The Body Beautiful opposite Mindy Carson, Jack Warden and Brock Peters.[1]

Forrest played later U.S. Senator William Borah in the 1963 episode "The Lion of Idaho" of the syndicated television anthology series Death Valley Days. In the storyline, Borah as a young attorney defends a woman in Nampa, Idaho, on a murder charge.

In 1965, Forrest and his family moved to London, where he starred as John Mannering in the title role of the British crime drama The Baron. His other television credits included The DuPont Show with June Allyson, Storefront Lawyers, S.W.A.T., Hollywood Wives, and Rod Serling's hour-long Twilight Zone episode "The Parallel", as well as Serling's Night Gallery segment "The Waiting Room".

On a 1969 episode of Gunsmoke titled "Mannon", he portrayed Will Mannon (one of the very few men ever to outdraw Matt Dillon), then reprised the character 18 years later for the 1987 television film Gunsmoke: Return to Dodge with James Arness.

Jock Ewing, the character played by Jim Davis in the television series Dallas from 1978 to 1981, was presumed to have been killed in a helicopter crash during the 1981–82 season, although Jock's body was never found. This storyline was written into the series script on account of Davis' real-life death. In 1986 Lorimar Television, now renamed Lorimar Tele-Pictures, extended Forrest's contract from the 1985–1986 season of "Dallas" (the "Dream Season"), during which he had played the character Ben Stivers. They brought him back as a similar character renamed Wes Parmalee, who would be revealed to actually be Jock Ewing, in the 1986-87 season. While the season was still in production, the news leaked that Forrest would be playing the new Jock Ewing. Fans of the show believed the new storyline was disrespectful to the memory of Davis.[citation needed] Lorimar was forced to drop the Wes Parmalee character and change the story outcome.

Personal life

At 18, he enlisted in the Army during World War II, attaining the rank of sergeant and fought in the Battle of the Bulge. After the war, he moved to Los Angeles and attended UCLA where he graduated with honors in 1950 with a bachelor's degree in theater arts. While working as a stagehand at the La Jolla Playhouse outside San Diego, he was discovered by Hollywood legend Gregory Peck, who cast him in the summer stock production of 'Goodbye Again' and arranged for his first screen test with MGM, where he was placed under contract.

Forrest married Christine Carilas on December 23, 1948. They had three sons: Michael, Forrest, and Stephen.

In 1953, he earned the Most Promising Newcomer award from the Golden Globes for his performance in the Warner Bros. film 'So Big'. In a career that spanned six decades, among films he appeared in were 'Prisoner of War' (1954), 'The Living Idol' (1957), 'Flaming Star' (1960), 'The Longest Day' (1962), 'Rascal' (1969), 'The Wild Country' (1970), 'North Dallas Forty' (1979), 'Mommie Dearest' (1981), 'Sahara' (1983), 'Amazon Women on the Moon' (1987) and 'S.W.A.T.' (2003). Among television series he was featured in were 'Playhouse 90', 'Outlaws', 'Death Valley Days', 'The Virginian', 'Rawhide', 'Bonanza', 'Insight', 'Alias Smith and Jones', 'Ironside', 'Night Gallery', 'Medical Center', 'The Rookies', 'Dallas', and 'Murder, She Wrote', however his most memorable TV role was that of Lt. Dan 'Hondo' Harrelson on 'S.W.A.T.' from 1975 through '76.

Forrest, who was the brother of actor Dana Andrews, was also an avid and accomplished golfer, Forrest often played in charity tournaments. He competed in 1976, for example, on the U.S. team at the Bing Crosby Great Britain vs. U.S.A. Tournament, which was held that year in Scotland at Gleneagles.[1]

Forrest died of natural causes on the 18th of may, 2013, in Thousand Oaks, California, aged 87.[5]

Partial filmography

Radio appearances

Year Program Episode/source
1953 Lux Radio Theatre The Girl in White[6]


  1. ^ a b c d e Barnes, Mike (22 May 2013). "'S.W.A.T' Star Steve Forrest Dies at 87". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 19 August 2018.
  2. ^ Fox, Margalit (May 23, 2013). "Steve Forrest, Performer on Film and TV's 'S.W.A.T.', Dies at 88". The New York Times. Retrieved May 24, 2013.
  3. ^ "NOTABLE ALUMNI ACTORS". UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television. Archived from the original on October 6, 2014. Retrieved September 29, 2014.
  4. ^ Mitchell, Elvis (August 8, 2003). "S W A T (2003) FILM REVIEW; Working Up A S.W.E.A.T." The New York Times.
  5. ^ Levy, Gabrielle (23 May 2013). "S.W.A.T. star dies at 87". United Press International. Retrieved 19 August 2018.
  6. ^ Kirby, Walter (May 17, 1953). "Better Radio Programs for the Week". The Decatur Daily Review. p. 48. Retrieved June 27, 2015 – via open access

External links

This page was last edited on 24 January 2022, at 13:21
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