Best photos ( Rock Hudson )

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Birth information

17 November 1925 Winnetka, Illinois, USA

Death information

2 October 1985 Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, California, USA

Given Name

Roy Harold Scherer Jr.

Nickname

Roy
Leroy
Rock Pyle
Fitz
Mr Beefcake

How tall is Rock Hudson?

1.96 m

Who is(are) his/her spouse(s)?

Phyllis Gates

Life Story of Rock Hudson

Rock Hudson was born Roy Harold Scherer, Jr. in Winnetka, Illinois, to Katherine (Wood), a telephone operator, and Roy Harold Scherer, an auto mechanic. He was of German, Swiss-German, English, and Irish descent. His parents divorced when he was eight years old. He failed to obtain parts in school plays because he couldn't remember lines. After high school he was a postal employee and during WW II served as a Navy airplane mechanic. After the war he was a truck driver. His size and good looks got him into movies. His name was changed to Rock Hudson, his teeth were capped, he took lessons in acting, singing, fencing and riding. One line in his first picture, Fighter Squadron (1948), needed 38 takes. In 1956 he received an Oscar nomination for Giant (1956) and two years later Look magazine named him Star of the Year. He starred in a number of bedroom comedies, many with Doris Day, and had his own popular TV series McMillan & Wife (1971). He had a recurring role in TV's Dynasty (1981) (1984-5). He was the first major public figure to announce he had AIDS, and his worldwide search for a cure drew international attention. After his death his long-time lover Marc Christian...

Significant features of Rock Hudson

Deep, sensous voice
Thick black hair
Moved from westerns to sob stories to sosphisticated comedies
Towering, sculpted frame
Ideal leading-man good looks

How much money has Rock Hudson earned?

Giant (1956) $100,000
A Farewell to Arms (1957) $17,000 per week
McMillan & Wife (1971) $120,000 /episode
McMillan & Wife (1971) $120,000 /episode (first season)
McMillan & Wife (1971) $75,000...

Publications and Magazines about Rock Hudson

Mark Bego Rock Hudson-Public and Private. 1986
Phyllis Gates with Bob Thomas My Husband, Rock Hudson. 1987
Tom Clark, w/Dick Kleiner Rock Hudson: Friend of Mine. 1989
Brenda Scott Royce Rock Hudson: A Bio-Bibliography. 1995
John Parker The Trial of Rock Hudson. 1990
Jerry Oppenheimer and Jack Vitek Idol, Rock Hudson: The True Story of an American Film Hero. 1986
Mark Griffin All that heaven allows: A biography of Rock Hudson. 2018

Biographical movies about Rock Hudson

Rock Hudson's Home Movies 1992
Rock Hudson 1990
E! True Hollywood Story: "Rock Hudson" Episode #3.27 1999

What movies did Rock Hudson play or participate?

Producers Filmography
Tobruk (1967) , Seconds (1966) , Man's Favorite Sport? (1964) ,
Actors Filmography
Dynasty (1985) Daniel Reece, The Vegas Strip War (1984) Neil Chaine, The Ambassador (1984) Frank Stevenson, The Devlin Connection (1982) Brian Devlin, The Devlin Connection III (1982) Brian Devlin, World War III (1982) President Thomas McKenna, The Patricia Neal Story (1981) Rock Hudson, The Star Maker (1981) Danny Youngblood, The Mirror Crack'd (1980) Jason Rudd, The Martian Chronicles (1980) Col. John Wilder, Avalanche (1978) David Shelby, Wheels...

Birth information

17 November 1925 Winnetka, Illinois, USA

Death information

2 October 1985 Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, California, USA

Given Name

Roy Harold Scherer Jr.

Nickname

Roy
Leroy
Rock Pyle
Fitz
Mr Beefcake

How tall is Rock Hudson?

1.96 m

Who is(are) his/her spouse(s)?

Phyllis Gates

Life Story of Rock Hudson

Rock Hudson was born Roy Harold Scherer, Jr. in Winnetka, Illinois, to Katherine (Wood), a telephone operator, and Roy Harold Scherer, an auto mechanic. He was of German, Swiss-German, English, and Irish descent. His parents divorced when he was eight years old. He failed to obtain parts in school plays because he couldn't remember lines. After high school he was a postal employee and during WW II served as a Navy airplane mechanic. After the war he was a truck driver. His size and good looks got him into movies. His name was changed to Rock Hudson, his teeth were capped, he took lessons in acting, singing, fencing and riding. One line in his first picture, Fighter Squadron (1948), needed 38 takes. In 1956 he received an Oscar nomination for Giant (1956) and two years later Look magazine named him Star of the Year. He starred in a number of bedroom comedies, many with Doris Day, and had his own popular TV series McMillan & Wife (1971). He had a recurring role in TV's Dynasty (1981) (1984-5). He was the first major public figure to announce he had AIDS, and his worldwide search for a cure drew international attention. After his death his long-time lover Marc Christian...

Significant features of Rock Hudson

Deep, sensous voice
Thick black hair
Moved from westerns to sob stories to sosphisticated comedies
Towering, sculpted frame
Ideal leading-man good looks

How much money has Rock Hudson earned?

Giant (1956) $100,000
A Farewell to Arms (1957) $17,000 per week
McMillan & Wife (1971) $120,000 /episode
McMillan & Wife (1971) $120,000 /episode (first season)
McMillan & Wife (1971) $75,000...

Publications and Magazines about Rock Hudson

Mark Bego Rock Hudson-Public and Private. 1986
Phyllis Gates with Bob Thomas My Husband, Rock Hudson. 1987
Tom Clark, w/Dick Kleiner Rock Hudson: Friend of Mine. 1989
Brenda Scott Royce Rock Hudson: A Bio-Bibliography. 1995
John Parker The Trial of Rock Hudson. 1990
Jerry Oppenheimer and Jack Vitek Idol, Rock Hudson: The True Story of an American Film Hero. 1986
Mark Griffin All that heaven allows: A biography of Rock Hudson. 2018

Biographical movies about Rock Hudson

Rock Hudson's Home Movies 1992
Rock Hudson 1990
E! True Hollywood Story: "Rock Hudson" Episode #3.27 1999

What movies did Rock Hudson play or participate?

Producers Filmography
Tobruk (1967) , Seconds (1966) , Man's Favorite Sport? (1964) ,
Actors Filmography
Dynasty (1985) Daniel Reece, The Vegas Strip War (1984) Neil Chaine, The Ambassador (1984) Frank Stevenson, The Devlin Connection (1982) Brian Devlin, The Devlin Connection III (1982) Brian Devlin, World War III (1982) President Thomas McKenna, The Patricia Neal Story (1981) Rock Hudson, The Star Maker (1981) Danny Youngblood, The Mirror Crack'd (1980) Jason Rudd, The Martian Chronicles (1980) Col. John Wilder, Avalanche (1978) David Shelby, Wheels...

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Rock Hudson in Im Schatten des Korsen (1953)

Chosen by Empire magazine as one of the 100 Sexiest Stars in film history (#28). [1995]

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Rock Hudson in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

The Prudential Life Insurance Co. stopped using its slogan "Own A Piece Of The Rock" after Hudson's death from AIDS and the slogan became the subject of ridicule.

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Rock Hudson and Dorothy Malone in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

Went to the same school, New Trier Township High School East (Winnetka, Illinois), as Ann-Margret, Charlton Heston, Ralph Bellamy, Hugh O'Brian, Bruce Dern, Penelope Milford, Virginia Madsen and Liz Phair.

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Rock Hudson and Robert Middleton in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

Worked as a truck driver when he first moved to Los Angeles, but he spent his spare time idling outside of studio gates and sending photographs of himself to various producers.

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Rock Hudson, Dorothy Malone, and Robert Middleton in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

Talent scout Henry Willson coined the stage name, "Rock Hudson", by combining the Rock of Gibraltar and the Hudson River.

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Rock Hudson and Dorothy Malone in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

Although he tried out for roles in school plays, Hudson failed to win any because he could not remember lines.

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Rock Hudson, Dorothy Malone, Robert Middleton, and Alan Reed in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

Enamored of movies as a teenager, he worked as an usher. Before taking his first film role, he got his teeth capped and was coached intensively in acting, singing, dancing, fencing and riding. Still, it took no less than 38 takes before he could successfully complete one line in his first picture, Fighter Squadron (1948).

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Rock Hudson and Robert Stack in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

Hudson was the original choice to play Jason Colby in the Dynasty (1981) spin off The Colbys (1985), but had to turn it down due to his declining health. The part went to Charlton Heston instead. By the time he had taken the guest role of Daniel Reece on Dynasty (1981) in late 1984, the AIDS virus was consuming him. Before long, he was suffering from memory loss and was forced to use cue cards to read his lines. He also had difficulty speaking. When he went to Carmel, California, in July 1985 to help his Pillow Talk (1959) co-star Doris Day launch her cable series, Doris Day's Best Friends (1985), his gaunt appearance and obvious disorientation suddenly became the media focus of what was meant to be a joyous reunion of one of Hollywood's favorite on-screen couples. He died just three months later.

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Rock Hudson and Dorothy Malone in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

Involved with Marc Christian during the period he knew he had AIDS, but allegedly did not disclose it to Christian. Christian hired Marvin Mitchelson, and sued Hudson's estate for damages and emotional distress. He won a $21.7 million jury award in 1989, which was reduced to $5.5 million in 1991.

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Rock Hudson and Dorothy Malone in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

Underwent emergency quintuple heart bypass surgery to relieve severely clogged coronary arteries in November 1981 after suffering chest pains, and began smoking again soon after leaving the hospital. Consequently he was very frail during the filming of The Ambassador (1984), while in Israel during the winter of 1983-84, and he did not get along with his alcoholic co-star Robert Mitchum. Production on the television series The Devlin Connection (1982) was also suspended for a year while he was recovering from quintuple heart bypass surgery.

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Rock Hudson and Dorothy Malone in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

Hudson and his partner Marc Christian went out of their way while traveling near downtown Los Angeles, so that the couple could meet Michael Jackson during the filming of his award-winning music video, Michael Jackson: Thriller (1983).

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Rock Hudson and Robert Middleton in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

According to the book, "The Man Who Invented Rock Hudson", the original plan was to call him "Roc" but someone pointed out the possibility of confusion with the 1940s actress, Rochelle Hudson, so a "k" was added and "Roc" became "Rock".

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Rock Hudson and Dorothy Malone in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

Biography in: "The Scribner Encyclopedia of American Lives". Volume One, 1981- 1985, pages 405-407. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1998.

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Rock Hudson, Jack Carson, Dorothy Malone, etc.

Following a right-shoulder injury in 1973, often used his left hand to write and pick up objects on McMillan & Wife (1971).

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Rock Hudson in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

In 1977 he toured 13 cities as King Arthur in the musical "Camelot".

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Rock Hudson and William Schallert in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

A conservative Republican, Hudson joined Ronald Reagan, John Wayne, Irene Dunne and Raymond Massey in campaigning for Barry Goldwater in the 1964 presidential election. Hudson stayed at the White House in May 1984 as a guest of then President Ronald Reagan. First Lady Nancy Reagan wrote to Hudson saying how glad she and her husband were to see him looking well following his operation.

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Rock Hudson and Dorothy Malone in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

Made "Top 10 Stars of the Year" a record eight times, from 1957-1964.

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Rock Hudson and Dorothy Malone in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

Was very close friends with singer Dusty Springfield.

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Rock Hudson and Dorothy Malone in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

Grew a mustache and sideburns for his role in The Undefeated (1969). Afterwards he decided to retain that look throughout the 1970s.

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Rock Hudson and Dorothy Malone in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

Early in his career he had surgery on his vocal chords to make his voice deeper, and had his teeth capped. The surgery had the unfortunate side effect of making it impossible for Hudson to learn to sing. Therefore when he played King Arthur in "Camelot" he had to talk his way through the songs, just as Rex Harrison did in My Fair Lady (1964).

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26 th
Rock Hudson in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

He was the original choice to play Jason Colby in the Dynasty (1981) spin off The Colbys (1985), but had to turn it down due to his declining health. The part went to Charlton Heston instead.

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Rock Hudson and Dorothy Malone in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

Was seriously considered for the male lead in Alfred Hitchcock's Marnie (1964), and actually met with Hitchcock, but was turned down in favor of Sean Connery.

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Troy Donahue, Rock Hudson, and Robert Middleton in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

In order to make A Farewell to Arms (1957), he turned down Marlon Brando's role in Sayonara (1957), William Holden's role in The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957), and Charlton Heston's role in Ben-Hur (1959). The three films he had turned down went on to become hugely successful and were critically acclaimed, while A Farewell to Arms (1957) proved to be one of the biggest flops in history.

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Rock Hudson and Christopher Olsen in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

After announcing he had AIDS in July 1985, Hudson received telegrams of support from Frank Sinatra, Gregory Peck, Marlene Dietrich, James Garner, Carol Burnett, Ali MacGraw, Jack Lemmon, Richard Dreyfuss, Ava Gardner, Mickey Rooney, Milton Berle and Madonna. President Ronald Reagan, who had recently undergone surgery for colon cancer, personally telephoned him at the hospital.

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Rock Hudson and Christopher Olsen in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

He was very near-sighted and wore glasses all the time off screen. He would rarely allow himself to be photographed wearing glasses though.

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Rock Hudson and Christopher Olsen in Duell in den Wolken (1957)

Although Hudson never publicly came out as gay during his lifetime, he did authorize a biography by Sara Davidson, "Rock Hudson: His Story" (1986), which discussed his private life in great detail.

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Rock Hudson in Der Mann, der zweimal lebte (1966)

Had a priceless record collection, which was taken by Marc Christian after his death.

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Rock Hudson and Jeff Corey in Der Mann, der zweimal lebte (1966)

He stood six foot by the time he was fourteen.

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Rock Hudson in Der Mann, der zweimal lebte (1966)

He had always been critical of plastic surgery, although in 1981 he had surgery on his eyelids after a cameraman convinced him it would make him look better on screen.

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Rock Hudson and Wesley Addy in Der Mann, der zweimal lebte (1966)

He actively sought the leading role in Ice Station Zebra (1968), and after Laurence Harvey backed out of the project, Hudson was cast.

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Rock Hudson in Der Mann, der zweimal lebte (1966)

He was very disappointed by the box office failure of Seconds (1966), which he considered to be his best performance and had hoped would show the public that he could be a versatile film actor.

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Rock Hudson in Der Mann, der zweimal lebte (1966)

In 1979 he was involved in a DUI incident when he crashed his car into a palm tree in Los Angeles late one night.

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Rock Hudson and Salome Jens in Der Mann, der zweimal lebte (1966)

Once said he knew had made it in Hollywood after he received more applause and cheers at the premiere of Bend of the River (1952) than the film's star, James Stewart.

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Rock Hudson and Salome Jens in Der Mann, der zweimal lebte (1966)

He was reportedly Universal Studio's first choice to play Atticus Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird (1962), but was rejected as being too youthful looking at age 36.

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Rock Hudson in Der Mann, der zweimal lebte (1966)

Along with Cary Grant, he was regarded as one of the best-dressed male stars in Hollywood.

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Rock Hudson in Der Mann, der zweimal lebte (1966)

In the summer of 1966 he was released from his studio contract after filming Tobruk (1967). Five years later, he signed a contract with Universal Studios to do McMillan & Wife (1971) in 1971 for one of the largest salaries ever seen in television at the time.

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Rock Hudson in Der Mann, der zweimal lebte (1966)

Although commonly listed as 6'4", he is believed to have downplayed his height. His character is repeatedly referred to as being 6'6" in the film Pillow Talk (1959) and, upon co-starring with John Wayne and James Stewart, he was clearly taller than those very tall stars. Many sources list him 6'5", which would put him as equal to Vince Vaughn, Tim Robbins and, the tallest leading man per the Guinness Book of World Records, Christopher Lee as the tallest leading men.

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Rock Hudson in Der Mann, der zweimal lebte (1966)

His agent subtracted two years from his date of birth--from 1925 to 1923--in order to get Hudson more mature roles.

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Rock Hudson in Der Mann, der zweimal lebte (1966)

Was in talks, with Doris Day and Tony Randall, for a Pillow Talk (1959) sequel at the time he was diagnosed was AIDS. The story reportedly would have him and Doris Day's character being married and dealing with their daughter's upcoming marriage to Tony Randall's son.

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Rock Hudson and Richard Anderson in Der Mann, der zweimal lebte (1966)

Universal agreed to loan Hudson to his original studio Warner Bros. in exchange for the services of Warner contractee Virginia Mayo for the potboiler Congo Crossing (1956).

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Rock Hudson and Richard Anderson in Der Mann, der zweimal lebte (1966)

MGM offered Universal $750,000 for Hudson to play the starring role in Ben-Hur (1959) but the studio refused.

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5 th
Rock Hudson and Cornell Borchers in Nur Du allein (1956)

After Husdon had chosen his new name Rock, when it was suggested by agent Henry Willson, the actor objected when Universal tried to shorten the spelling to Roc.

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Rock Hudson in Embryo (1976)

After Raoul Walsh sold Rock Hudson's contract to Universal, he retained the right to his services in one film. This was ultimately settled a decade later, when Walsh was assigned a percentage of the profits from Come September (1961).

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3 rd
Rock Hudson, John Elerick, and Anne Schedeen in Embryo (1976)

Hudson was assigned to The Golden Blade (1953) only after Tony Curtis and Farley Granger turned it down.

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2 nd
Rock Hudson, John Elerick, and Anne Schedeen in Embryo (1976)

Hollywood writer Sidney Skolsky reportedly coined the term "Beefcake" with Hudson in mind.

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1 st
Elizabeth Taylor and Rock Hudson

In June 2014, he was honored as Turner Classic Movies' Star of the Month.

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