Thursday, June 30, 2011

6/30 Robert Conrad Talks with Elliott Gould - and YOU!

Elliot Gould was one of Hollywood's hottest actors of the early '70s and he remains a steadily employed supporting and character actor. Gould's lifelong involvement in show business is partially the result of his mother. She encouraged an eight-year-old Gould take numerous classes in performing,singing, and dance, including ballet. She enrolled him in Manhattan's Professional Children's School and then had him perform in hospitals, temples, and sometimes on television. Gould was also a child model. During summers, Gould performed at Catskill mountain resorts.

When he was 18, he made it into a Broadway chorus line. Working odd jobs in between minor stage gigs, Gould did not get his big break until he joined the chorus line of the musical Irma La Douce. From there he won the leading role opposite Barbra Streisand in I Can Get It for You Wholesale. Though the two leads got good reviews, the show did not and rapidly closed. During its short run, Gould and Streisand fell in love, and in 1963, married.

The following year, Gould made a feature-film debut playing a deaf-mute in The Confession (1964). He went on to make The Night They Raided Minsky's (1968). While his wife's popularity hit the stratosphere, and for a time, he helped arrange her television appearances. By 1967 Gould untied the knot with Streisand.

Gould became a star in 1969 when his co-starring role in the sex comedy Bob and Carol and Ted and Alice earned him a Best Supporting Actor nomination. After playing Trapper John in Robert_Altman's counterculture classic M*A*S*H, Gould at last made it to the big league. Tall, curly-haired, laid-back, unconventional, and sensitive, Gould was tremendously popular with young adults who strongly identified with the often confused and neurotic characters he played. Gould's subsequent few films, notably Getting_Straight (1970) and Little_Murders, reinforced his counterculture image.

A powerfully subtle performance as Philip Marlow in Altman's Long Goodbye (1973) proved that Gould had talent to spare. He was in films California Split and Capricorn One, S*P*Y*S and I Will, I Will for Now.

His son, Jason_Gould, is an actor, too.

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