The Story of Timothy Scott

September 13, 2010

Here is a short excerpt from my memoir, MY FORTY-FIVE YEARS IN HOLLYWOOD AND HOW I ESCAPED ALIVE.

To order the book, go to Amazon.com:

http://www.amazon.com/Forty-Five-Years-Hollywood-Escaped-Alive/dp/159393601X/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1282489337&sr=1-1

Timothy Scott was an early publicity client.

I doubt if many (or any) of you will recognize his name, but you’ve certainly seen some of his movies. He played gang member “News Carver” in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, “Deputy ‘Shagbag’ Martin” in In the Heat of the Night and, perhaps his best role, “Pea Eye Parker” in the Lonesome Dove miniseries.

Tim always seemed to be working. He was a nice, friendly guy; a tall, lanky fellow, sort of a young Walter Brennan type.

He grew up on a sheep ranch in either Arizona or New Mexico. I don’t remember which.

There was one story Tim told me that I’ve never forgotten. In fact, I’ve repeated it many times, because it shows how naive people are about the movie business. At least, how naive they were back in the 1960s and earlier.

With all the coverage that the entertainment industry gets on television or in DVD “extras” these days, most people who come to Hollywood to break into the movies are (hopefully) more sophisticated.

Having come from a sheep ranch, Tim believed the “Lana Turner myth” about being discovered at a soda fountain. He wasn’t the only one.

As a publicist, I ran into more than one person who’d bought that story.

Tim came to Hollywood, planning to be “discovered”. To the best of my knowledge, he’d had no training whatsoever as an actor.

So, what did he do?

For the first month he was in town, he spent all day/every day walking up and down the sidewalk in front of Columbia Pictures, which was then located at Sunset and Gower in Hollywood, hoping that some producer or director would come out and say, “You’re just the guy I’m looking for.”

It didn’t happen.

Eventually, Tim got smart. He took some acting lessons, and although he never achieved stardom, he made a good living as a respected character actor.

You have a creative day.

Michael

© Michael B. Druxman

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