James Craig


  1. Edmond O’Brien, Obliging Young Lady, 1941.    “I was out there in Hollywood on vacation and I saw a lot of people making movies. If they could do it, why couldn’t I?” The tall, rugged Craig looked good, acted bad. His stint as an MGM contractee blossomed due to his resemblance to the King of Hollywood Clark Gable, away in WWII with the US Army Air Force. Craig was relocated to Unexpected Uncle, a thin – and even funny – O’Brien took over “Red” Reddy in the comedy with a title sounding like a hooker’s postcard in a 60s’ Soho window.
  2. Harry Morgan, Gentle Annie, 1944.     Only two members of the shuttered 1942 cast survived to the revised production in ’44. Morris Ankrum and Craig – now inheriting the lead, US Marshall Lloyd Richland, from Robert Taylor, and, hunting himself – well, his original role of outlaw Cottonwood Goss. In Gore Vidal’s novel, Myra Breckinridge, Craig was named as the hero’s most romantically desirable movie star.
  3. Ray Milland, A Life of Her Own, 1950.       Lana Turner  nearly stalked from her first movie in two years when MGM failed to land a co-star from the highly mixed bag of Craig, Cary Grant, Howard Keel, James Mason, George Murphy and Robert Ryan. The rich mine owner was given to Wendell Corey. As lucklustre as usual, he begged off after a few weeks. “I’m not right for the rôle.” And Milland was, said MGM, borrowing him from Paramount.

 Birth year: 1912Death year: 1985Other name: Casting Calls:  4