Rod Cameron

  1. Gary Cooper, For Whom The Bell Tolls, 1943.  About ten actors were considered including Cameron, the ex-stunt double for Buck Jones and Fred MacMurray, only ever hitting the front page  for divorcing his second wife… to wed her mother!  
  2. Van Johnson, Dr Gillespie’s New Assistant, 1942.   MGM dropped Lew Ayres as Dr Kildare when he announced he was a conscientious objector to WWII. The studio – and Lionel Barrymore’s Dr Gillespie – immediately started hunting a new assistant… from Cameron, Dana Andrews, Charles Drake, Cornel Wilde. And, ironically, Larry Parks – a 50s’ blacklist victim, as much as poor Ayres was in the 40s. In all, Johnson made four films as Dr Red Adams to close the series – but the much trumpeted Dr Gillespie’s Lady Doctor never happened
  3. Macdonald Carey, Meet Me After The Show, 1950.    The song and dances were far better than the tiresome script.  Which is why Cameron and Cary Grtant refused to be Betty Grable’s wandering husband. (First title was Don’t Fence Me In). Neither  one was a  happy hoofer. 
  4. Jim Backus, Rebel Without a Cause, 1955.  “Look, Jim. You can depend on me. Trust me. Whatever comes, we’ll, we’ll fix it together. I swear it.”  Yeah, sure… James Dean’s milquetoast father was a battle between Backus, Raymond Burr, Rod Cameron, Hume Cronyn, John Dehner and Walter Mathau – difficult to imagine  Matthau as a wimp!  Backus taught his Mr Magoo cartoon voice to Dean, who used it in  his  line about children: “Drown ’em like puppies, eh?”  Sidney Lumet had launched James Dean, Sal Mineo  and Paul Newman (a Jim Stark candidate) in his  New York TV shows.




 Birth year: 1910Death year: 1983Other name: Casting Calls:  4