R.I.P. Stuart Whitman, star of Cimarron Strip and Highway Patrol

The TV Western and war movie actor was 92.

The Everett Collection

In the late Sixties, the creators of Gunsmoke looked to bring another tough marshal to the small screen. Cimarron Strip followed the law-keeping of U.S. Marshal Jim Crown on the borderlands beyond the Kansas Territory. The Western cast an Oscar-nominee in the lead as Crown.

Stuart Whitman had earned a Best Actor Academy Award nomination for his work in The Mark (1961), a psychological drama about an ex-con. The following year, Whitman appeared in The Longest Day, a role he fatefully stumbled into after delivering some cigars to producer Darryl F. Zanuck. Zanuck cast him in the picture.

The San Francisco native was a familiar face in Westerns and War World II films of the era, titles like The Decks Ran RedThe Day and the Hour and Rio Conchos. A onetime boxer and Army man himself, Whitman slid into tough-guy roles with ease.

On television, Whitman landed his first significant recurring role as Sergeant Walters on Highway Patrol. Series lead Broderick Crawford enjoyed the company of Whitman and invited him onto the show whenever his buddy needed the paycheck.

Cimarron Strip at last gave Whitman a headlining role on the level of a James Arness, though the series only lasted one season. It faced competition from Batman, Bewitched and Daniel Boone.

In the Seventies, Whitman appeared in cult B-movies like Crazy Mama and popped up several times on Fantasy Island. A decade later, he landed another regular role as comic book icon Jonathan "Pa" Kent on Superboy.

Whitman passed away on Monday after a battle with skin cancer, a longtime friend told TMZ. He was 92.

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MikefromJersey 27 months ago
It's January 2022 and I just noticed this post.
Whitman was aces on Cimarron Strip, each episode 90 minutes had a large budget that made
each seem like it was more a Hollywood B movie than a TV episode.
One of the best was with Richard Boone as a old army Sgt. whom the times and the army
no longer had any use for.
The British actress who portrayed the owner of the saloon/hotel was a stunner, she made her counterpart Miss Kitty look like chopped liver by comparison. The critics liked this series
but I understand it was canceled because it was so expensive to make. Free on YouTube.
DethBiz 42 months ago
RIP Stuart. Great bad movie actor. Loved him in Demonoid, Night of the Lepus and Mean Johnny Barrows.
Granny 42 months ago
Wow. They are dropping like flies!
kimmer 42 months ago
Again...we have lost so many recently....R.I.P
jacko3 48 months ago
Stuart Whitman .. another fine actor .. LORD Rest his Soul ...
william561 49 months ago
Lyle Waggoner alwas was a hot bod!
George 49 months ago
Was amazing in lead role of The "Grandpa " Steve Kozara story. He nailed it. R.I.P. my friend.
TroyLowe 49 months ago
He did a great job as cult leader Jim Jones in "Guyana Cult of the Damned".
Chloe 49 months ago
I have a DVD copy of him in Irwin Allen's, "City Beneath the Sea".
jacko3 49 months ago
GOD Be With Stuart Whitman .. another fine actor!
JudyClavel 49 months ago
He was the handsome cowboy in "Those Magnificent Men in their Flying Machines." RIP Mr. Whitman
GaryGoltz 49 months ago
He was terrific on 'Highway Patrol' and a close friend of David Janssen's of 'The Fugitive'.
GaryGoltz GaryGoltz 49 months ago
YouTube Link - https://youtu.be/CaYCH-X8cjs
slim115W 49 months ago
Always liked Stuart, he was a very good character actor. RIP Stuart.
texasluva 49 months ago
So sad to hear about actors and people from the past that entertained millions. I remember him in The Comancheros when it came on TCM some years ago. From the great era of cinema. He has over 180 credits through the years. R.I.P Stuart Whitman.
harlow1313 49 months ago
I love "Night of the Lepus," with its giant blood-thirsty killer bunnies. Now that's horror.
Barry22 harlow1313 49 months ago
Those wascaly wabbits! Wasn't DeForest Kelly in that movie also?
Greg Barry22 49 months ago
Yes as was the other Enterprise Doc Paul Fix
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