About the author

Erik Gratton

Incurable Royals and Chiefs fan since late 70's. I'm professional actor that was raised in Kansas City. Rockhurst, then Olathe North, then Olathe East, then Olathe North again (then Emporia State, Detroit, New York, LA and now Seattle). Life is pretty good and you can listen to me talk about it at thelazymuse.com and snark about it on twitter. Watch good movies.

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  1. 7

    Erik Gratton

    The Times piece is really pretty great. As for his work with Burt, I agree, but as has been pointed out to me I could have gone on for 3000 words about the guy. I wouldn’t put Evening Shade as his lasting contribution, but am happy to be confronted on the subject. In my defense, Sharky’s Machine gets a reference in my next column. Hope that mollifies. (BTW, enjoy your work, OMD.)

  2. 6

    old man duggan

    No love for his turns in Stick, Sharky’s Machine, and Evening Shade? His work with Burt Reynolds is what he should be remembered for. Let’s just forget Rescue Me, though. It’s depressing to see him that old.

    The weirdest thing about Durning is that he looked the same age from about 1978 until about 2002 and then aged 20 years in five minutes.

    And I’m sure this was covered in his Times obit, but the dude stormed the beach at Normandy. Much more a man than I’d imagine any of us are.

  3. 5

    Erik Gratton

    Walter Brennan is a great choice and one of my favorites, certainly. In Princess and the Pirate, he has one of my favorite scenes in film, with Bob Hope. As far as best go, I might disagree, but it’s a strong choice and I disagree with just about everything. Pertaining to Big Ronnie Reagan, you’ll have to read the article and navigate the links. Thanks again!

  4. 4


    By the way, the best character actor of all time…Walter Brennan.

  5. 3


    Does Ronald Reagan get a mention?

  6. 2

    Erik Gratton

    Thanks! Up next is a ranking (of sorts) of athletes that made the shift to Hollywood. I’m hip-deep in research, right now.

  7. 1


    Excellent article. You are off to a good start.

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