CBC Digital Archives

James Coburn is kind to hippies

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He began his career in Hollywood westerns, but it was his turn as the suave spy Derek Flint in the James Bond parody Our Man Flint and its sequel In Like Flint that really made James Coburn a star. In 1968 he is branching out into a new role as producer with The President's Analyst, a satire he happily discusses with Elwood Glover on the CBC-TV show Luncheon Date. In this clip, Coburn describes an action sequence that was so realistic that an overzealous cop blew the shot by chasing down a running Coburn and billy-clubbing him. (Note: this is the audio of a TV program for which video is unavailable.)
• James Coburn was born in Nebraska in 1928 and grew up in Los Angeles. He worked on the stage, in TV and commercials before being cast in his first movie, 1959's Ride Lonesome. In The Magnificent Seven (1960) he broke out of the villain role to play the knife-wielding good guy Britt.

• The tagline for Coburn's movie The President's Analyst, as seen in the poster pictured here, was "The picture dedicated to life, liberty and the pursuit of happenings." A "happening" was a 1960s term for an event that blurred the lines between performance and participation. Poetry, art or music could all be part of it.  

• Coburn worked little during the 1980s due to a serious case of painful rheumatoid arthritis. He returned to view in the 1990s in Roberts Altman's The Player, playing himself.

• In 1999 Coburn won his first and only Academy Award for his portrayal of an abusive, alcoholic father in the movie Affliction. When accepting his award, Coburn said: "I've been working and doing this work for, like, over half my life and I finally got one right, I guess." 

Medium: Television
Program: Luncheon Date
Broadcast Date: Jan. 10, 1968
Guest(s): James Coburn
Host: Elwood Glover
Duration: 13:05
This is the audio of a TV report for which video is unavailable.
Photo: Movie poster, The President's Analyst, Paramount Pictures

Last updated: June 7, 2013

Page consulted on February 28, 2014

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