James Garner was a rarity on two fronts. He was a television star who became a movie star – at a time when that just didn’t happen – who then transitioned right back into television. He was also a character actor at heart who managed to become a leading man. Oscar-nominated and Emmy-winning, Garner did a lot of fine work. Best known for Maverick and The Rockford Files, Garner was adept at drama as well as comedy. Whether playing opposite Doris Day in two of her typical ’60’s comedies, or opposite James Woods as his older brother/caretaker of a schizophrenic in Promise, he was always a class act.
He was also a pioneer in challenging Hollywood’s “creative accounting” system. For that alone, everyone in the acting community owes him a debt of gratitude. The rest of us can just be thankful we got to watch him perform for so many years.