Saturday, December 9, 2023

Ryan O'Neal Passes On

Ryan O'Neal, who starred in such movies as Love Story (1970), What's Up, Doc? (1972), and Paper Moon (1973), died yesterday, December 8 2023, at the age of 82.

Ryan O'Neal was born on April 20 1941 in Los Angeles. His father was novelist and screenwriter Charles "Blackie" O'Neal, who wrote screenplays for such films as The Seventh Victim (1943) and The Unknown (1946). as well as the novel The Three Wishes of Jamie McRuin. Ryan O'Neal was only a teenager when he took up boxing. He competed in Golden Gloves events in Los Angeles in 1956 and 1957. It was in the late Fifties that his family moved to Munich. There he became a stand-in and stuntman on the syndicated TV series Tales of the Viking.

After Ryan O'Neal returned to the United States, he made his television debut in the Dobie Gillis episode "The Hunger Strike." It also marked the television debut of Marlo Thomas. That same year he guest starred on the shows The Untouchables and General Electric Theatre. In the Sixties he was a regular on the short-lived show Empire and the night-time soap opera Peyton Place. He guest starred on the shows The DuPont Show with June Allyson, Bachelor Father, Laramie, Two Faces West, Westinghouse Playhouse, Leave It to Beaver, My Three Sons, The Virginian, Perry Mason, and Wagon Train. He made his film debut in The Big Bounce (1969). He appeared in the movie The Games (1970) before making his big break with the hit movie Love Story (1970).

In the Seventies Ryan O'Neal appeared in the hit films What's Up, Doc? (1972) and Paper Moon (1973), as well as the movies Wild Rovers (1971), The Thief Who Came to Dinner (1973), Barry Lyndon (1975), Nickelodeon (1976), A Bridge Too Far (1977), The Driver (1978), Oliver's Story (1978), and The Main Event (1979). In the Eighties he appeared in the films Green Ice (1981), So Fine (1981), Partners  (1982), Irreconcilable Differences (1984), Fever Pitch (1985), Tough Guys Don't Dance (1987), andChances Are (1989).

In the Nineties Ryan O'Neal starred in the short-lived sitcom Good Sports and the short-lived drama Bull (not to be confused with the 2016 series of the same name). He guest starred on The Larry Sanders Show and appeared in the TV movie The Man Upstairs. He appeared in the films Faithful (1996), Hacks (1997), An Alan Smithee Film: Burn Hollywood Burn (1997), Zero Effect (1998), Coming Soon (1999), Gentleman B. (2000), and The List (2000).

In the Naughts Ryan O'Neal was a regular on the short-lived comedy TV series Miss Match and had a recurring role on the TV series Bones. He guest starred on the shows Desperate Housewives and 90210. He appeared in the films People I Know (2001) and Malibu's Most Wanted (2003). In the Teens he continued to appear on Bones. He appeared in the movies Slumber Party Slaughter (2012) and Knight of Cups (2015).

Ryan O'Neal was a talented actor who played a wide variety of roles. He played the musicologist Dr. Howard Bannister, who becomes involved with an eccentric woman (Barbara Streisand) in What's Up Doc?. He was also the easy-going con man Moses Pray who agrees to deliver a little girl (Tatum O'Neal) to her aunt in St. Joseph in Paper Moon. He was the rogue of the title in Barry Lyndon, who marries a rich widow to better his social position. On the TV series Bones he played Max, the father of the main character Temperance "Bones" Brennan, a former, non-violent bank robber. Ryan O'Neal played a number of roles throughout his career and he gave many good performances.

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