William Demarest

Carl William Demarest (February 27, 1892 – December 28, 1983) was an American character actor. He frequently played crusty but good-hearted roles. He was born Carl William Demarest in St. Paul, Minnesota, the son of Samuel and Wilhelmina (née Lindgren) Demarest. He moved to New Bridge, a hamlet in Bergen County, New Jersey, in infancy. A veteran of World War I. Demarest was a prolific film and television actor, having worked on over 140 films. He started in show business working in vaudeville, appearing with his wife as "Demarest and Colette", then moved on to Broadway. His film career began in 1926 and spanned the decades up to the 1970s. Demarest worked regularly with director Preston Sturges, becoming part of a "stock" troupe of actors that Sturges repeatedly cast in his films. He appeared in ten films written by Sturges, eight of which were under his direction, including The Lady Eve, Sullivan's Travels, and The Miracle of Morgan's Creek. His most famous TV role was in the ABC and then CBS sitcom My Three Sons from 1965 to 1972, playing Uncle Charley O'Casey. He replaced William Frawley, whose failing health had made procuring insurance impossible.


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