Actor James Garner Dead At 86

Published on July 21, 2014.
Mark Mainz/Getty Images

(LOS ANGELES) — James Garner, the actor who helped re-define the western and detective genres on television, died Saturday at his California home. He was 86.

Garner first gained fame in the late 1950s on the TV comedy series Maverick. At a time when traditional Westerns were a staple of primetime TV fare, Garner’s wisecracking Bret Maverick — a gambler who’d rather run than fight but who could outdraw most gunfighters — was a tremendous hit, and made Garner a star.

Garner left Maverick after three seasons and built a film career, starring in both comedies and dramas, including the classic 1963 war drama The Great Escape and two hit romantic comedies opposite Doris Day.

In 1974, Garner returned to television in the comedy-drama The Rockford Files. Garner’s take on Jim Rockford, a Los Angeles detective who lived with his father in a run-down mobile home and drove a Pontiac Firebird, was an even bigger hit than Maverick, airing for six seasons and earning Garner a best actor Emmy in 1977. Like Maverick did with Westerns, The Rockford Files in many ways redefined the TV private detective show, and paved the way for similar hits, such as Magnum P.I.

Garner continued to switch between TV and film in his later years, and was nominated for an Oscar in 1985 for starring opposite Sally Field in the romantic comedy Murphy’s Romance.

His later films included 1994’s Maverick, with Mel Gibson playing the title role and Garner starring as his father.

Garner also appeared in 2000’s Space Cowboys opposite Clint Eastwood, 2004’s The Notebook, and had a role on the TV sitcom 8 Simple Rules.

Garner’s autobiography, The Garner Files: A Memoir, was published in 2011. In 2005, Garner received the Screen Actors Guild Lifetime Achievement Award.
ABC News | ABC Sports News

Follow @ABCNewsRadio

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Also Check Out: The 10 Most Shocking Deaths Of The Past 5 Years!

Soap Opera Spoilers For Friday, October 29, 2021

soap opera spoilers

Soap Opera Spoilers For Friday, October 29, 2021

Soap Opera Spoilers For Thursday, October 28, 2021

soap opera spoilers

Soap Opera Spoilers For Thursday, October 28, 2021

Soap Opera Spoilers For Wednesday, October 27, 2021

soap opera spoilers

Soap Opera Spoilers For Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Soap Opera Spoilers For Tuesday, October 26, 2021

soap opera spoilers

Soap Opera Spoilers For Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Soap Opera Spoilers For Monday, October 25, 2021

soap opera spoilers

Soap Opera Spoilers For Monday, October 25, 2021

Alec Baldwin Fires A Prop On Set That Causes One Fatality And A Serious Injury

Celebrity Deaths

Alec Baldwin Fires A Prop On Set That Causes One Fatality And A Serious Injury

Queen Elizabeth II Hospitalized After Canceling Visit To Ireland

Royals

Queen Elizabeth II Hospitalized After Canceling Visit To Ireland

Young And The Restless Spoilers For The Week (October 25, 2021)

The Young and the Restless

Young And The Restless Spoilers For The Week (October 25, 2021)

B&B’s Sean Kanan Fires Back At Angry Viewer With Hilarious Tweet

Bold and the Beautiful

B&B’s Sean Kanan Fires Back At Angry Viewer With Hilarious Tweet

Bold And The Beautiful Spoilers For The Week (October 25, 2021)

Bold and the Beautiful

Bold And The Beautiful Spoilers For The Week (October 25, 2021)

X
- Click Here to Close Menu -