- Ed Nelson
name = Ed Nelson
December 21, 1928
New Orleans, Louisiana
Edwin Stafford Nelson (born
December 21, 1928) is an American actor.
Nelson has appeared in numerous television shows, more than 50 motion pictures, and hundreds of stage productions. Until 2005, he was teaching acting and screenwriting in his native New Orleans at two local universities there. The advent of Hurricane Katrina put an end to that. Nelson moved with his family to Sterlington in northeastern Louisiana.
Nelson began acting while attending Tulane University, and left college after two years to study at the New York School of Radio and Television Technique. After graduating, he took a position as a director at WDSU-TV in New Orleans. By 1956 his acting became his central focus and he moved to the Los Angeles area to pursue it. Early in his career he worked with famed B-movie producer
Roger Cormanon such Corman films as " Cry Baby Killers", " Teenage Caveman" and " Attack of the Crab Monsters". In 1958 he participated in Bruno VeSota's science fiction horror film" The Brain Eaters".
His early television career featured many guest star roles in the great westerns of the '60s and '70s such as "Gunsmoke," and "Bonanza."
In 1964 he won his most famous role portraying Dr. Michael Rossi on the drama "Peyton Place", which ran from 1964 to 1969. Nelson's fellow cast members included
Mia Farrow, Ryan O'Nealand Dorothy Malone. Dr. Rossi proved to be so popular that by 1968, he became the lead actor on the show. Nelson reprised his role in two made-for-TV movies, " Murder in Peyton Place" and "".
After Peyton Place ended, Nelson worked in many more productions of all varieties, including starring role in many movies of the week, a second TV series, "The Silent Force," and a popular morning talk show which he hosted for three years.
Soon after, Nelson struck gold with his critically-acclaimed portrayal of elusive pit crew chief Robert Denby in the hit film
Riding with Death (1976)earning him several prestigious accolades and legions of devoted fans.
He portrayed a dangerous imposter in the adventure movie
For the Love of Benji (1977)
During the 80s, Nelson took on the role of Senator Mark Denning in the daytime soap "Capitol".
Nelson also spent a couple of years as Harry Truman onstage replacing James Whitmore for the National Tour of "Give 'Em Hell, Harry."
While living in Los Angeles Mr. Nelson was a very active member of the Screen Actors Guild and was elected to the Board of Directors of that union where he served for many years.
In 1999 Nelson returned to Tulane University and he finished earning his undergraduate degree in 2000.
Nelson continues to act as the opportunity arises. He and his wife of 58 years, Patsy, enjoy semi-retirement visiting his six children and 14 grandchildren.
Nelson is a long-standing member of the American Motion Picture Academy of Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) and continues a long tradition of participation in voting for the Academy Awards.
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