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Christopher Jones
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    (August 18, 1941-January 31, 2014)
    Born in Jackson, Tennessee
    Birth name was William Frank Jones
    Portrayed the title role in the ABC series 'The Life of Jesse James' (1965-66)
    Appeared on Broadway in 'The Night of the Iguana' (1961)
    Appeared in the films 'Wild in the Streets' (1968), 'Three in the Attic' (1968), 'Ryan's Daughter' (1970) and 'Mad Dog Time' (1996)
    Married actress Susan Strasberg (1965-68)
    Two days after joining the Army, he went AWOL and stole a car, eventually serving six months in a military prison.
    During filming of 'The Looking Glass War' (1969), he carried on simultaneous affairs with co-star Pia Degermark, ex-wife Strasberg, and Sharon Tate (who was pregnant with husband Roman Polanski's child).
    After filming 'Ryan's Daughter,' he had a nervous breakdown that he blamed on overwork and having 'so many love affairs, I was exhausted.'
    His lines in 'Ryan's Daughter' were redubbed by another actor because of his inability to produce an adequate British accent.
    He said, 'After 'Ryan's Daughter,' I gave up acting because I realized I hated it.'
    Quentin Tarantino offered him the role of Zed in 'Pulp Fiction,' but he turned it down, reportedly because his girlfriend hated the script.
    He and his brother were placed in Boys Town after their mother was hospitalized with emotional problems.
    He strongly resembled James Dean.
    His breakdown was also triggered by grief over Sharon Tate's murder.
    He took up painting and sculpting after quitting acting.
    His only post-'Ryan's Daughter' film appearance, a cameo in 'Mad Dog Time,' was a favor to director Larry Bishop, who he had befriended when they both appeared in the cult film 'Wild in the Streets.'
    He said about leaving the movie biz, 'I am happy.... I did exactly as I pleased, within my own world.'

Credit: C. Fishel

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