Richard Anderson, Actor on ‘The Six Million Dollar Man,’ ‘Dynasty’ Who Was Mentored By Cary Grant, Dies at 91

 Richard Anderson, who portrayed Oscar Goldman, the head of a secret scientific government organization, on the 1970s series The Six Million Dollar Man and its spinoff, The Bionic Woman, died Thursday. He was 91.richard-anderson

Anderson, mentored by Cary Grant and received a huge career boost when he was cast in Stanley Kubrick’s anti-war classic Paths of Glory (1957), died at his home in Beverly Hills, publicist Jonathan Taylor announced.
A frequent authority figure onscreen, Anderson also portrayed a colonel in another notable war film, the Rod Serling-scripted Seven Days in May (1964), and he operated on Rock Hudson, the second time much to Hudson’s dismay, in another John Frankenheimer film, the sci-fi thriller Seconds (1966).
As an MGM contract player who started out in the mail room, Anderson appeared early in his career in such films for the studio as The Magnificent Yankee (1950), Scaramouche (1952), Escape From Fort Bravo (1953) and Forbidden Planet (1956).
He then moved to Fox and played Joanne Woodward’s mama’s boy boyfriend in The Long, Hot Summer (1958).
In the highly rated, two-part episode that brought a thrilling end to the 1960s ABC series The Fugitive, Anderson portrayed the brother-in-law of Richard Kimble (David Janssen). He also was Police Lt. Steve Drumm on the final season of CBS’ Perry Mason and Santa Luisa Police Chief George Untermeyer on ABC’s Dan August, starring Burt Reynolds.
After three popular Six Million Dollar Man telefilms in 1973, the Universal TV property was given steady life as an ABC series in January 1974. On the show, Anderson played the chief of the fictional Office of Scientific Intelligence and the boss of Steve Austin (Lee Majors), a NASA astronaut who is injured in a crash and “rebuilt” (at a cost of about $29 million in today’s dollars), becoming a secret agent.
Anderson also is heard in the show’s action-packed introduction: “Gentlemen, we can rebuild him, we have the technology. We have the capability to make the word’s first bionic man.”
The series then spawned The Bionic Woman — starring Lindsay Wagner as Jaime Sommers, a tennis player who’s infused with machinery and brought back to life after a parachuting accident, and Anderson played Goldman on that show (which went from ABC to NBC) as well.
He was the first actor to portray the same character in two TV series running concurrently on two networks.
Both shows ended in 1978, but Universal, prodded by Anderson, made three more bionic telefilms through 1994. As an executive producer, he was instrumental in the casting of Sandra Bullock as a bionic girl in 1989’s Bionic Showdown.
Years later, Andy Stitzer (Steve Carell) had an action figure of Oscar Goodman in The 40-Year-Old Virgin.
His first wife was Carol Lee Ladd, the step-daughter of actor Alan Ladd; his second was Katharine Thalberg, the daughter of Oscar-winning actress Norma Shearer and famed MGM producer Irving Thalberg. Both marriages ended in divorce.
Born in Long Branch, N.J., Anderson and his family moved to Los Angeles when he was 10. After graduating from University High School and serving a 17-month stint in the Army during World War II, he studied at the Actors Laboratory in Los Angeles.
Written By: Tommy Lightfoot Garrett
Photographs are Courtesy: AP; IMDB
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