Alan Hale Jr.
Alan Hale Jr. was a veteran character actor best remembered as the blundering but likable skipper of a charter boat that for three television seasons during the 1960s was shipwrecked on "Gilligan's Island."
Portly and gregarious, the 6-foot, 2-inch Hale was often mistaken for his father, a successful character actor who had roles in more than 100 feature films. The father's career included appearances as Little John both in the 1922 silent screen version of "Robin Hood" with Douglas Fairbanks Sr. as Robin and the same role opposite Errol Flynn in a 1938 sound remake of that epic adventure.
Hale Jr. played supporting roles in more than 70 films, beginning as a youth in 1933 with "Wild Boys of the Road." Before "Gilligan's Island," which ran from 1964 to 1967, he appeared in two other television series—"Casey Jones" and "Biff Baker, U.S.A."
But it was the ill-fated "three-hour tour" on the SS Minnow that launched Hale's most notable character. In the plot, the tour was waylaid by a storm and the Minnow swept away to an uncharted South Pacific Island.
For three full seasons of television production and now nearly three decades of syndicated reruns, Hale's belly laughs created a lasting impression on two generations of TV viewers.
Since the original series ended, the cast has been reunited for three TV movie reunions in 1978, '79 and '81.
After the series, Hale continued to act in movies and on television. His most recent appearances include cameos on "Alf," "Growing Pains," "Murder She Wrote" and "The New Gidget."
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