WHATEVER HAPPENED TO KENT MCCORD? 'ADAM-12' STAR STILL SHINES.
"Adam-12" may have ended its original run 32 years ago, but fans of the police drama have no trouble recognizing Kent McCord as the actor who portrayed Officer Jim Reed for seven seasons.
"I get that all the time, especially when I'm doing things that are related to police," said McCord, who was born Kent Franklin McWhirter on Sept. 26, 1942.
It's no surprise that the L.A. native's first acting gig was on "The Adventure of Ozzie and Harriet" since he was a buddy of Ricky Nelson, whom he met at USC. McCord appeared in seven episodes from 1962 to '66 and remembers one scene particularly well.
"I started on that show working background, standing in for Ricky. One day, they were doing a fraternity show where there was a party going on -- early-day 'Risky Business'-type thing -- while Ozzie and Harriet were away from the house.
"They came home early and I was standing at the door with my date. Ozzie asked, 'Where's Rick?' and I said, 'Who's Rick?' Those were the first two words I ever said in pictures."
What followed were small parts in a trio of Elvis Presley films, as well as eight appearances as police rookie Reed on the Jack Webb drama "Dragnet 1967."
A year later, Webb cast McCord to reprise his role opposite Martin Milner as veteran officer Pete Malloy in "Adam-12." The series ran on NBC from 1968 to '75, and its positive portrayal of crime-fighting work was credited with boosting recruitment in the Los Angeles Police Department.
"I kind of got spoiled when I got into the business doing 'Ozzie and Harriet,'" McCord said. "That was a real-life family and the (plots) were always based on things that were real -- real things happening to real people. Then I was fortunate enough to do 'Adam-12,' which was based on fact.
"I've always been partial to doing that kind of programming, something that has a beginning, middle and an end, and can entertain as well as educate."
McCord may have never had another series as successful as "Adam-12," but he has kept working.
He was one of the leads in the ABC sci-fi series "Galactica 1980," had a recurring role on "SeaQuest DSV" in the mid-1990s. His semiregular role of Jack Crichton on "Farscape," a sci-fi TV cult hit that ran from 1999 to 2003, gained him lots of younger fans.
In recent years, however, McCord's most notable role has been as a leader in the Screen Actors Guild. He was elected to its National Board of Directors in 1972, as treasurer in 2001 and is currently first national vice president.
(color) Kent McCord
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|Publication:||Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)|
|Date:||Dec 5, 2007|
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