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Max Showalter
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Actor
    (June 2, 1917-July 30, 2000)
    Born in Caldwell, Kansas
    Frequently credited as Casey Adams
    Acted in 'Niagara,' 'Bus Stop,' 'It Happened to Jane,' 'Sixteen Candles,' '10,' 'Return to Peyton Place,' 'The Naked and the Dead,' 'Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club,' and 'Indestructible Man'
    Performed in Broadway productions of 'Knights of Song,' 'The Grass Harp,' 'Make Mine Manhattan,' and 'This is the Army'
    Played the stage role of Horace Vandergelder in over 3,000 performances of 'Hello Dolly!'
    Best known as the original Ward Cleaver in the Leave it to Beaver pilot, then-titled 'It's a Small World' (1957)
    His mom used to make a living playing the musical accompaniment to silent movie-house films.
    He made his film debut as a pen salesman in 'Always Leave Them Laughing.'
    His roles on film and television were generally limited to uncredited cameos and walk-on roles.
    He had a lead role in Stockard Channing's short-lived TV series.
    'Leave it to Beaver' fans found it almost impossible to accept the sight of June Cleaver kissing another man named Ward when the pilot was made available to viewers as part of the 50th Anniversary of the show.
    While it remains unclear why he was replaced by Hugh Beaumont as Ward, he came off as smarmy and sarcastic, even smoking a cigarette in one scene (something Beaumont's Ward never did).
    His former stage name has resulted in Google searches turning up images of Casey Anthony.
    He liked to spend his free time painting oil miniatures.
    He had back-to-back roles in Marilyn Monroe movies ('Niagara' and 'Bus Stop').
    He was skilled as a composer, pianist, and singer, and sidelined as a stage producer, writer, and director.
    His tenure playing Horace in 'Hello Dolly' was extensive enough that he played opposite Carol Channing, Ginger Rogers, and Betty Grable.
    He had a memorable role in the Dudley Moore movie, '10,' as a pastor whose hobby is writing songs.
    He retired from acting to move into an 18th-century farmhouse in Chester, Connecticut, which he had fallen in love with during the filming of 'It Happened to Jane.'
    He probably would have been better suited as the host of a 'Dick Van Dyke'-style show, where his wry delivery would have been appreciated.

Credit: BoyWiththeGreenHair


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