George Maharis

Active - 1960 - 1993  |   Born - Sep 1, 1928   |   Genres - Drama, Mystery, Crime, Thriller, Adventure

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Biography by Hal Erickson

George Maharis was one of seven children of Greek immigrant parents. Though he could very easily have gone into his father's restaurant business, Maharis decided to try for a singing career. When his vocal chords were injured by overuse, Maharis switched to acting, studying at the Actors' Studio and making one of his earliest appearances as a Marlon Brando parody on the 1950s TV sitcom Mr. Peepers. Maharis was very active in the off-Broadway scene, appearing in Jean Genet's Deathwatch and Edward Albee's The Zoo Story. He gained a fan following (primarily female) through his weekly appearances as handsome drifter Buzz Murdock on the TV series Route 66. He played Buzz from 1960 to 1963, leaving the series for a variety of reasons, among them artistic differences and a bout of hepatitis. His subsequent film career failed to reach the heights of his TV work, and by 1970 Maharis was back in the weekly small-screen grind in the adventure series The Most Dangerous Game. When not performing in nightclubs, summer stock or films, George Maharis spent a good portion of the 1970s and 1980s indulging in his pet hobby, impressionistic painting.

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