Larry Hagman Biography

Larry Hagman, born Larry Martin Hageman on September 21, 1931, is an American actor who is most famous for playing J.R. Ewing in the television soap opera Dallas. Hagman was born in Fort Worth, Texas to Ben Hagman and his wife, legendary stage actress Mary Martin. He has been married to Swedish-born Maj Axelsson since 1954, and they have two children. They live in Ojai, California. Hagman served in the United States Air Force in the entertainment unit and began his own acting career shortly after his service ended.

In addition to his role on Dallas, Hagman is well known for his role as "Major Tony Nelson" on the popular television sitcom I Dream of Jeannie (1965-1970), in which he co-starred opposite Barbara Eden. He also directed several episodes of the show. In the years after the series, Hagman severely distanced himself from Jeannie, refusing to speak about it until 2001, the year his tell-all book was published, even though he invited former co-star Eden to appear on Dallas.

After Jeannie was cancelled, Hagman had two other short-lived series in the 1970s: Here We Go Again and The Good Life. He did guest appearances on television shows like Love American Style, Medical Center, and McCloud. He also appeared in such television films as Getting Away From It All (1972), Sidekicks (1974), The Return Of The World's Greatest Detective (1976), Intimate Strangers (1977), and Checkered Flag Or Crash (1977). Hagman also appeared in the theatrical films Harry And Tonto (1974), The Eagle Has Landed (1977), Superman: The Movie (1978), and Primary Colors (1998). He also directed a low-budget horror film in 1972 called Beware The Blob! Some have jokingly called this "the film that JR shot."

Hagman won wide praise for his performance as the charismatic antihero. At the conclusion of the 1979-1980 season, J.R. was shot by an unknown assailant and the burning question that summer all over the United States was, "Who shot J.R.?" When the culprit was finally revealed on November 21, 1980, the show received the highest ratings in television history at that time. Larry Hagman stayed with Dallas through 357 episodes until it was cancelled in 1991.

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