Tom Ewell

  1. Ray Walston,  Kiss Me Stupid, 1964. Peter Sellers died (eight times) following a massive heart-attack. Comedy auteur Billy Wilder didn’t want (much less, care) to wait and see if he might recover. OK, the sets were up and the clock was ticking, but Wilder sabotaged his own movie, by refusing to wait for the availability of his usual saviour, Jack Lemmon, and signing…  TV’s favourite Martian! Walston  had been in Wilder’s The Apartment, 1959. But he was   far from Sellers’ league. Not  even in the league of Tom Ewell (from Wilder’s Seven Year Itch, 1954), Bob Hope, Danny Kaye and Tony Randall,  who said replacing  Sellers was an impossibility:  Wilder learned his lesson… During his next film, The Fortune Cookie, Walter Matthau also suffered a heart attack and  Wilder waited five months for him  to recover. Both films were awful. He made five more . But Wilder was over.

 Birth year: 1909Death year: 1994Other name: Casting Calls:  1