Sunday, December 03, 2006
The passage of time has taken one of the most familiar faces of the 1950s-1980s period. It would probably be easier to list the television shows that Milton Selzer didn't appear in than the ones he did. Born in Lowell, Mass. in 1918, he attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts and The New School in New York. After serving in World War II, he began appearing on the stage and in live television, doing such shows as Playhouse 90 and You Are There (where he once played Ghandi !). He and his wife Alice moved to California in 1960, where he became possibly the most prolific character player of the decade. He could do comedy (he was Professor Parker in several episodes of Get Smart); drama (The Defenders, The Untouchables, Hawaii Five-O); even westerns (Gunsmoke, Have Gun Will Travel, High Chaparral). He even found time to appear in a handful of films, such as Henry Fonda's A Big Hand for a Little Lady, and Steve McQueen's Cincinnati Kid. He continued to work into the mid-1990s, showing up on MacGyver, Walker Texas Ranger, Cagney & Lacey, and as a regular on the short-lived Famous Teddy Z. Mr. Selzer died October 21 of a stroke at St. John's Hospital after being retired for over a decade and living in Oxnard, California. His wife of 53 years and a son survive him.