'Bonanza' Star Pernell Roberts Dies at 81
Veteran actor Pernell Roberts of 'Bonanza' died at his Malibu home Sunday. His wife Eleanor Criswell told the Los Angeles Times that Roberts lost his battle with cancer. He was 81.
Roberts shot to fame in the role of Adam Cartwright on the long-running western, though he left the show to pursue a film career after six seasons - an arguably premature move that Entertainment Weekly recently counted among the 50 worst TV blunders of all time. After 15 years out of the limelight, Roberts took on the starring role of 'Trapper John, MD,' for all seven seasons of its run.
Roberts appeared in guest roles and documentaries in the 1980s. The actor retired from show business in the late '90s.
ROBERTS, Jr., Pernell Elvin
Born: 5/18/1928, Waycross, Georgia, U.S.A.
Died: 1/24/2010, Malibu, California, U.S.A.
Pernell Roberts' westerns – actor:
Sugarfoot (TV) – 1957, 1958 (Salt River Smith, Deuce Braden)
Trackdown (TV) – 1958 (Bannion)
Gunsmoke (TV) – 1957, 1967 (Nat Pilcher, Dave Reeves)
Have Gun – Will Travel (TV) – 1958 (Maury Travis)
The Sheepman – 1958 (Choctaw Neal)
Tombstone Territory (TV) – 1958 (Johnny Coster)
Zane Grey Theater (TV) – 1958 (Jet Mason, Lew Banning)
Ride Lonesome – 1959 (Sam Boone)
Lawman (TV) – 1959 (Fent Harley)
Cimarron City (TV) – 1959 (O'Hara)
Bronco (TV) – 1959 (Reverend David Clayton)
Buckskin (TV) - 1959 (Oscar)
Bonanza (TV) – 1959-1965 (Adam Cartwright)
The Virginian (TV) – 1966, 1971 (Jim Boyer, Sr., Stranger)
The Wild Wild West (TV) – 1967 (Sean O'Reilley)
The Big Valley (TV) – 1967, 1968 (Patrick Madigan, Ed Tanner
Lancer (TV) – 1969 (Banning)
The Silent Gun (TV) – 1969 (Sam Benner)
Four Rode Out – 1970 (Marshal Ross)
Alias Smith and Jones (TV) – 1971, 1972 (Sam Finrock, Terence Tynan)
The Bravos (TV) – 1972 (Jackson Buckley)
The Quest (TV) – 1976
Charley Cobb: Nice Night for a Hanging (TV) – 1977 (Sheriff Yates)
Cetnenial (TV) – 1978 (General Asher)
High Noon, Part II: The Return of Will Kane (TV) – 1980 (Marshal J.D. Ward)
Desperado (TV) – 1987 (Marshal Dancey)
The Young Riders (TV) – 1990 (Hezekiah Horn)