Darryl Hickman

Active - 1940 - 2007  |   Born - Jul 28, 1931   |   Genres - Drama, Comedy

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Actor Darryl Hickman was discovered at age three by kiddie-troupe entrepreneur Ethel Meglin, to whom Hickman's insurance salesman father had sold a policy. Whenever young Hickman would ask his ambitious mother exactly why he was trodding the boards with Meglin's Kiddies, she would reply, "But, dear, it's what you've always wanted." Hickman's first movie was a minor role in If I Were King (1938), followed by a better, critically lauded role in Bing Crosby's The Star Maker (1939). After free-lancing for several seasons, Hickman signed a five-year MGM contract, which he later considered a mixed blessing in that, while his roles were good ones, he grew up much too quickly for his tastes. During the 1940s, Hickman often played the film's leading adult character as a child: young Ira Gershwin in Rhapsody in Blue (1945), young Eddie Rickenbacker in Captain Eddie (1945), and so on. Hickman's first mature role, for which he garnered a passel of excellent reviews, was as Clark Gable's son in 1949's Any Number Can Play. Weary of the Hollywood game in 1951, Hickman entered a monastery, but quit this austere existence after 18 months to enroll in Loyola University. Some of Hickman's better adult roles after his Army service included a meaty part in 1956's Tea and Sympathy and a starring part on the 1961 Civil War-based TV series The Americans. In the late 1950s, Hickman found that his fame had been eclipsed by his younger brother Dwayne, who co-starred on TV's Bob Cummings Show and played the lead in the weekly sitcom Dobie Gillis. Like Dwayne, Darryl eventually went into the production side of the business as a CBS executive, though he was still willing to take a part if the project interested him (as 1976's Network obviously did). Darryl Hickman was married to actress Pamela Lincoln, whom he met on the set of The Tingler (1959).

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