Michael Parks


  1. Dustin Hoffman, The Graduate, 1967.    The Bus Riley’s Back In Town star, Jean Renoir pa, The Bible’s Adam and Tarantino’s “world’s greatest living actor” was on producer Lawrence Turman’s handwritten wish list of nine actors (Beatty, McQueen to Peppard, Redford) for the titular Benjamin Braddock. Broadway’s Mike Nichols came to town and saw, tested, auditioned and sometimes called back (Jack Nicholson, certainly) almost every guy of the correct age. From Norman Bates to Batman’s Robin – Anthony Perkins and Burt Ward.  Plus the kid from Shane (Brandon De Wilde, now 25), Keir Dullea, Charles Grodin (who won Nichols’ next, Catch 22 instead), George Hamilton, Steve McQueen, George Peppard. And the prerequisite outsider: ex-MGM pactee turning director, Lee Stanley.  Hoffman got it right: “There is no piece of casting in the 20th century that I know of that is more courageous than putting me in that part.”
  2. Douglas Sheldon, Some Girls Do, 1968.  PUK producer Betty E Box  was making up for her worst error.  Sheconfessed to me in the 60s how  she rejected a certain book called… Casino Royale. Now she was churning another Briyihs hero,  Bulldog Drummond, an old WWI veteran, into a modern-day hero to rival (!) 007. The two movies  were really TV pilots. But The Man From UNCLE had cornered that telly-Bond market.  So young  Parks missed nothing  by losing Kruger to Sheldon.
  3. Christopher Walken, Pulp Fiction, 1993.

 Birth year: 1940Death year: 2017Other name: Casting Calls:  2