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Bradford Dillman
Born April 14, 1930 (1930-04-14) (age 79)
San Francisco, California, U.S.
Occupation Actor, author
Years active 1955–1995
Spouse(s) Frieda Harding Dillman (m. 1956–1962) «start: (1956)–end+1: (1963)»"Marriage: Frieda Harding Dillman to Bradford Dillman" Location: (linkback:
Suzy Parker (m. 1963–2003) «start: (1963)–end+1: (2004)»"Marriage: Suzy Parker to Bradford Dillman" Location: (linkback: (her death)

Bradford Dillman (born April 14, 1930) is an American actor and author.


Life and career


Early life

Bradford Dillman was born on April 14, 1930 in San Francisco, California, the son of Josephine (née Moore) and Dean Dillman, a stockbroker.[1] He studied at Town School for Boys and St. Ignatius High School. Later he attended the Hotchkiss boarding school in Connecticut, where he became involved in school theater productions.[2] He attended Yale University, studying theatre and drama. While at Yale, he enlisted in the U.S. Naval Reserve in 1948. He graduated from Yale University with a B.A. in English Literature.

After graduation, he entered the United States Marine Corps as an officer candidate, training at Parris Island. He was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Marine Corps in September 1951. As he was preparing to deploy to Korea, his orders were changed, and he spent the rest of his time in the Marine Corps, 1951 to 1953, teaching communication in the Instructors' Orientation Course. He was discharged in 1953 at the rank of first lieutenant.[2]

Early acting career

Studying with the Actor's Studio, he spent several seasons apprenticing with the Sharon, Connecticut Playhouse before making his professional acting debut in The Scarecrow in 1953. Dillman took his initial Broadway bow in the Eugene O'Neill play Long Day's Journey Into Night in 1956, originating the author's alter ego character Edmund Tyrone and winning a Theatre World Award in the process. This distinct success put him squarely on the map and 20th Century Fox took notice by placing the darkly handsome up-and-comer under contract. Cast in the melodramatic soaper A Certain Smile (1958), he earned a Golden Globe award.

Film, TV & other work

After his debut in A Certain Smile, co-starring Rossano Brazzi and Joan Fontaine, he appeared in many movies throughout the years including Compulsion (1959) for which he won an award at Cannes, the title role in Francis of Assisi (1961), Sanctuary (1961) based on the William Faulkner novel with Lee Remick, A Rage to Live (1965) with Suzanne Pleshette, The Mephisto Waltz (1971), Escape from the Planet of the Apes (1971), The Iceman Cometh (1973) as Will, The Way We Were (1973), The Enforcer (1976), The Swarm (1978), Piranha (1978), Sudden Impact (1983) and Lords of the Deep (1989).

Dillman also had a memorable role in The Incredible Hulk episode "The Snare" (an homage to the Richard Connell short story The Most Dangerous Game). He portrayed Michael Sutton, a hunter who tries to kill David Banner (played by Bill Bixby) on his mysterious island. That episode was one of the highest rated episodes in the series as it got high ratings on that night 7 December 1979 on CBS.[citation needed]

He appeared on television throughout his career, starting on NBC's Kraft Television Theatre in 1954. He guest starred in 1962 as Arnold Radwin in the episode "Eat Little Fishie Eat" in NBC's medical drama about psychiatry, The Eleventh Hour, starring Wendell Corey and Jack Ging. He also appeared in Jack Palance's ABC circus drama, The Greatest Show on Earth and the ABC medical drama Breaking Point starring Paul Richards and Eduard Franz.

Dillman made his final acting appearance on an episode of Murder, She Wrote in 1995. He had a secondary but notable role in The Bridge at Remagen as the battalion commander of a mechanized infantry unit which seizes the Remagen bridges before it is destroyed by the Germans.

Dillman wrote the football fan book, Inside the New York Giants (1995), and an autobiography, Are You Anybody?: An Actor's Life (1997).

Personal life

Dillman met actress and model Suzy Parker during the filming of Circle of Deception. They were married on April 20, 1963 and had three children, Dinah, Charles, and Christopher. The marriage lasted until her death on May 3, 2003. He was previously married to Frieda Harding from 1956 to 1962, and had two children (Jeffrey and Pamela) with Harding. He lives quietly in Montecito, California.

"Bradford Dillman" is, in fact, the actor's real name. In The Guinness Book of Movie Facts and Feats, he said that "Bradford Dillman sounded like a distinguished, phony, theatrical name -- so I kept it."


  1. ^ Film Reference biography
  2. ^ a b Wise, James E.; Anne Collier Rehill (1999). "Bradford Dillman". Stars in the Corps: Movie actors in the United States Marines (2nd edition ed.). Naval Institute Press. pp. 91–98. ISBN 9781557509499.,M1. Retrieved 21 March 2009. 

External links


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