Bill Williams

  1. Farley Granger, They Live By Night, 1947.      At 32, Williams was the oldest of four guys seen by director Nicholas Ray for his escaped con, Bowie. Granger was 22, Guy Madison was 25, and Michael Steele, 26.   Williams scored 115 screen roles during 1944-1981.

  2. Marshall Thompson, Battleground, 1949. Producer Dore Schary had booked  Roberts Mitchum and Ryan, plus Bill Williams for The Battle of the Bulge script about  “The Battered Bastards of Bastogne”. No, said RKO’s owner Howard Hughes: people are tired of war films. Schary moved to MGM – where his new boss, LB Mayer, said much the same.  Schary insisted and made it with Van Johnson. Jphnm Hodak and Thompson.  It  was such a winner than Schary was  swiftly elected to the Metro board and Mayer was  fired in 1951.

  3. Lloyd Bridges, Sea Hunt, TV, 1958-1961.     He passed on scuba diver Mike Nelson as, surely, an underwater series would, well, sink. Nobody’s perfect. The show sealed Bridges’ comeback from his grey-listed years as a suspected Communist (the FBI cleared him) and Williams tried his own aqua show, Assignment: Underwater, dead in the surf after the first 1960-1961 season. Both men sired second generation actors: Beau and Jeff Bridges and William Katt, Carrie’s prom date in 1976. Mrs Williams was Barbara Hale, Perry Mason’s secretary, 1957-1966.

 Birth year: 1915Death year: 1992Other name: Casting Calls:  3