Thursday, April 4, 2019

Seven Things to Know About Martin Milner

1. A second season episode of Route 66 featured a brawl between the characters played by Martin Milner and Lee Marvin--resulting in Milner accidentally breaking Marvin's nose. In the biography Lee Marvin: Point Blank, Milner recalls: "The only reason he didn't punch me back is because we were such good friends." Click here to watch the fight on our YouTube Channel.

2. Milner's first screen role was as John Day, the second oldest son in the Day family in the William Powell comedy Life With Father (1948). He once said: "I was never a child star. I was just somebody who got two or three jobs before I was a young adult."

George Maharis and Martin Milner.
3. Route 66 guest star Nancy Malone said in a 2006 interview: "George (Maharis) was the bad boy. He had this dangerous element about him which was very attractive; this dark, smoldering sexuality. Marty (Milner) was the adorable and wholesome one who held everything together. In certain ways, they were like oil and water, but the overall result was that they were fabulous together."

4. In James Rosin's book Route 66: The Television Series, producer Herbert Leonard noted that the casting of Tod Stiles came down to Martin Milner and a newcomer. The latter "had a tendancy to scream every time he got emotional," so Milner won the role. The other actor had a pretty good career though--his name is Robert Redford.

As Officer Peter Malloy on Adam-12.
5. Martin Milner knew Jack Webb long before he was cast in Adam-12. Milner appeared on Dragnet and starred with Webb in The Halls of Montezma (1950) and Pete Kelly's Blues (1955). Webb also directed the latter film, which featured Lee Marvin in a supporting role alongside Milner's hot-headed drummer (a very different role from the good guys typically played by Milner).

6. Milner married actress Judith Bess Jones (she has one acting credit in the IMDb) in 1957. They remained married until Milner's death from heart failure in 2015. They had four children. Their daughter Amy guest-starred on Adam-12 when she was 17. She died from leukemia in 2004.

7. Reflecting on his two iconic TV series, Martin Milner said in a 1992 interview: "The older people stop me for Route 66 and the younger, yuppie-types stop me for Adam-12."


Caftan Woman said...

Starting the day with you and Martin Milner is perfect. And there were a couple of things in there that I did not know. (I'm glad Redford blew the audition.)

I love his bit as the MP in Mister Roberts. When that movie is on and I don't have time for it, I try to time it to check in when the men get back from liberty.

Silver Screenings said...

That was quite a punch he delivered to Lee Marvin.

BandMama said...

I would have stoped Martin for either series! I wanted to grow up and someday meet a nice guy like Tod Stiles and I felt safe whenever watching Pete Malloy on Adam 12.I was greatly disappointed when either show was canceled. Too bad Swiss Family did not last... Such a DREAMBOAT Marty was (and still is)!